Ayasdi Team

Gurjeet Singh

Co-Founder & CEO

Gurjeet Singh is a co-founder of Ayasdi, has a Bachelor’s degree from Delhi University, and a Master’s and Ph.D. degree in Computational Mathematics from Stanford University. Gurjeet first met Gunnar Carlsson at Stanford during his Ph.D. and this led to Gurjeet’s graduate work and thesis on the theory, algorithms and applications of Topological Data Analysis (TDA), as well as, Gurjeet’s participation on Gunnar’s DARPA funded research project to study how topology can be applied to solve real world problems. During this time, Gurjeet designed and developed various TDA algorithms to bring out the shape and meaning of data. This led to the creation of Ayasdi’s core technology and machine-learning algorithms. Gurjeet has published academic papers in top mathematics journals and computer science conferences, previously worked at Google and Texas Instruments. He lives in Palo Alto with his wife and son, and develops multi-legged robots in his spare time.

Gunnar Carlsson


Gunnar Carlsson is one of the most renowned mathematicians in the world with his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and doctorate from Stanford. Over the past 35 years, Gunnar has taught at University of Chicago, University of California, Princeton University, and since 1991, Gunnar has been a professor of mathematics at Stanford University, where he has been a thought leader in a branch of mathematics called topology, the study of shape. In the theoretical sense, topology has been around since the 1700’s, but Gunnar pioneered the applied use of topology to solve complex real world problems starting in the late 1990’s. In the early 2000’s, this work led to $10M in research grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and DARPA to study the application of Topological Data Analysis (TDA) to problems of interest within the U.S. government. In 2008, based on the success of these efforts, Gunnar, along with two other Stanford mathematicians, co-founded Ayasdi. Gunnar is married, has 3 grown boys including two sons who are mathematicians, and lives in Palo Alto.

Latest Blog

February 21, 2014

Three Properties of Topological Analysis

Topology is the study of shape, but it is in fact the study of shape from a particular point of view.  For example, it does not distinguish betwe…

January 27, 2014

Measuring Shape

Unlike many numerical properties we deal with, shape is a somewhat nebulous concept.  We find that we can recognize similarities between shapes,…

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Harlan Sexton

Co-Founder and VP of Research

Harlan Sexton is a co-founder of Ayasdi, has a Ph.D. in Mathematics from Stanford University, and more than 30 software patents. In 2004, after more than 20 years in applied research and software development, he joined his longtime friend and colleague, Gunnar Carlsson, to work on the DARPA TDA project to apply topology to real world problems. Before this, Harlan spent a decade at Oracle where he was part of the 5-person team that implemented a Java Virtual Machine (JVM) for the Oracle RDBMS. One of the innovations in the Oracle JVM was a production-quality stack-conservative garbage collector that allowed tight integration between Java and the database. Parts of the code he wrote there still run hundreds of millions times per day, as Oracle databases carry out routine financial and retail transactions throughout the world. Earlier in his career, Harlan worked at Lucid, where he took the lead on Lisp performance and interoperability and wrote an incremental C/C++ linker that was later deployed by Sun Microsystems, and at Object Design, where he was an architect and implementer of an object-oriented database for Smalltalk. He also has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Ohio State, is married with 2 grown children, and when not inventing things, enjoys the game of golf.


Pek Lum

VP of Solutions and Chief Data Scientist

Pek Lum leads Ayasdi’s products and solutions team. After more than a decade in the life sciences industry, Pek has the passion to help find a cure to cancer and other diseases in her lifetime, and believes that Ayasdi’s technology may help solve these difficult problems. Pek was trained in molecular genetics and cell biology for her Ph.D. at the University of Washington. Her work has been widely published in scientific and medical journals, and her research has contributed to discoveries in drug development and the understanding of complex diseases. Pek spent 10 years at Rosetta Inpharmatics and was part of Merck’s $620M acquisition of Rosetta in 2001, one of the companies that in many circles is known to have started the genetics revolution with its bioinformatics solution for deciphering enormous amounts of gene-expression data to derive insights into numerous potential therapeutic targets for drug discovery. Pek also has a Master of Science in Biochemistry from Hokkaido University in Japan, speaks more than 5 languages, and lives in Palo Alto with her husband and two children.

Latest Blog

January 23, 2014

Team Ayasdi-UCSF Wins! Tackling Mild Traumatic Brain Injury with GE and the NFL

While the Bay Area is still nursing a tough loss to Seattle this past weekend in the NFC Championship game, the Ayasdi team received some great news f…

November 19, 2013

When is Breast Cancer like Ovarian Cancer?

Cancer is a word no one wants to hear from the doctor. We’ve been fighting the disease for many decades now. The good news is that treatments ha…

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Ben Mann

Vice President, Federal Operations

Ben Mann holds a Ph.D. in Mathematics from Stanford University and was a graduate student with Ayasdi co-founder Gunnar Carlsson in the 1970s. Ben leads Ayasdi’s initiatives with government agencies. Prior to joining Ayasdi, Ben worked for more than 6 years at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), an agency within the United States Department of Defense (DoD). As Program Manager, he devised, initiated, and directed novel mathematical programs with wide-ranging applications in materials science, physics, chemistry, biology, and neuroscience. Ben’s signature DARPA program, Topological Data Analysis (TDA), developed a theory to solve complex problems that involved structured and unstructured data sets. Using geometric ideas that data has shape and that shape has meaning enabled this program to analyze a variety of massive data sets. Earlier in his career, Ben served as a Program Officer in Mathematics at the National Science Foundation and on the mathematics faculties of several universities, including Harvard, Clarkson, and the University of New Mexico. His publications and research interests span algebra, number theory, topology, and geometry, and their implications across science and technology. Ben is also the author of Life on Loan, a modern satire that lampoons universities, government, and private foibles. He and his wife enjoy exploring the Texas Hill Country.


Gary Hagmueller

Chief Financial Officer

Gary Hagmueller is Ayasdi’s Chief Financial Officer and brings an extensive background in enterprise software, SaaS/Cloud technology and hyper-growth startups. Gary has raised over $200M, helped create over $7.5B in market value and is also a frequent presenter on financial best practices for emerging technology firms, SaaS/Cloud/E-Commerce metrics, fundraising & growth-company strategic planning.

Prior to Ayasdi, Gary was CFO of Zuora, Inc., the leading cloud subscription commerce, billing & finance platform, where he helped raise $40M, rebuilt the finance team and ran G&A plus a host of other functions. Previously, he was CFO of KnowNow (Kleiner-Perkins backed), COO of Vinfolio (acquired by Revolution Capital) and Senior Director of Finance for RouteScience Technologies (Benchmark/Sequoia backed; acquired by Avaya). Earlier, Gary was Director of Corporate Development for NorthPoint Communications where he helped drive a $6.5B IPO. His career began in business and corporate development for Verizon.

Hagmueller holds an MBA in Finance from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California, where he was named Sheth Fellow at the Center for Communications Management. He also holds a bachelor's degree with honors in Business from Arizona State University.


Shane Paladin

Vice President, WW Sales

Shane Paladin heads sales and business development at Ayasdi. He brings over 15 years of enterprise sales management, sales execution and management consulting experience. Shane joined Ayasdi from SAP, an industry leading Analytics and Big Data platform company, where he held a number of leadership roles, including Vice President of Business Analytics & Technology, and Vice President of Sales in North America within the West Region specializing in Strategic Customers, Enterprise and Emerging customer segments.

Prior to SAP, Shane was part of the founding team at FocusFrame, a technology management consulting firm where he led sales and delivery in North America, growing the business from $2M to $34M annually. His expertise was key in driving growth via channels with Mercury Interactive, HP, Siebel and SAP, growing the company from 5 consultants to over 200 consultants throughout his tenure.

Shane holds a B.A. in Business Administration, is an avid hiker, skier and in his spare time strives to master the artistry of Jimmy Page.


Harnish Kanani

Vice President, Customer Success

Harnish oversees all aspects of making Ayasdi's customers successful, including Professional Services, Customer Support and all Account Management functions. He comes to Ayasdi with 20+ years experience selling and delivering enterprise software products and services, overseeing Customer Success and Client Services globally at several start-ups and mature companies including Oracle, Taleo, Emagia, SumTotal, Cognizant , Ernst & Young and TATA.

Prior to Ayasdi, Harnish was VP and GM of Cloud Application Services at Oracle, where he managed the Oracle Consulting team for RightNow CRM and Taleo HCM solutions, overseeing professional services, customer success and deployment of cloud-based solutions.

Harnish holds a Bachelor of Engineering with Honors from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science in India, and sits on the Board of Advisors of numerous consulting firms. He spends his spare time traveling around the world, singing, and spending weekends watching his children's basketball and volleyball games.


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