Meet Our Team

Our Story

Figure Eight is dedicated to making machine learning work in the real world. Founded by a pair of data scientists, we’ve long provided businesses of every type with high-quality training data at scale that drives the most ambitious projects for the most innovative companies in the world.

Mark Brayan

CEO, Appen

Appen acquired Figure Eight in April of 2019. Mark joined Appen in July 2015 as CEO and is responsible for the company’s leadership, strategy and culture. Mark has over twenty-five years’ experience in technology and services. Prior to joining Appen, Mark was CEO of MST Global, a provider of technology solutions to the resources sector. Before that he was the CEO of Integrated Research Limited (ASX:IRI), an international software company listed on the Australian Stock exchange. Mark was also COO of the HR outsourcing company Talent2 (ASX:TWO) and CEO of Concept Systems (ASX:CSI) before its merger with Talent2.
Mark has an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management and Bachelor of Surveying with 1st Class Honors from the University of NSW.

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Lukas Biewald

Co-Founder and Advisor

Lukas co-founded and is an advisor at Figure Eight. He has worked as a Senior Scientist and Manager within the Ranking and Management Team at Powerset, Inc., a natural language search technology company later acquired by Microsoft, and also led the Search Relevance Team for Yahoo! Japan. He graduated from Stanford University with a BS in Mathematics and an MS in Computer Science. Lukas is also an expert-level Go player.

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Becky Scott

COO

As COO, Becky brings to Figure Eight over 25 years of executive, operational and financial leadership experience in Silicon Valley technology companies. She is responsible for Figure Eight’s operations and results.

Prior to Figure Eight, Becky was the COO and CFO of Pearl Law Group, a San Francisco based immigration law firm. She has held executive leadership roles at BabyCenter, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, Navigenics, and various other Bay Area technology companies. Prior to her leadership roles, she worked at Lehman Brothers in its San Francisco technology investment banking group, and at Arthur Andersen.

Becky holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Boston University.

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Wilson Pang

CTO, Appen

Appen acquired Figure Eight in April of 2019. Wilson joined Appen in November 2018 as CTO and is responsible for the company’s products and technology. Wilson has over seventeen years’ experience in software engineering and data science. Prior to joining Appen, Wilson was Chief Data Officer of CTrip in China, the second largest online travel agency company in the world where he led data engineers, analysts, data product managers and scientists to improve user experience and increase operational efficiency that grew the business. Before that, he was senior director of engineering in eBay in California and provided leadership to various domains including data service and solutions, search science, marketing technology and billing systems. He worked as an architect at IBM prior to eBay, building technology solutions for various clients.

Wilson obtained his Masters and Bachelor’s degrees of Electric Engineering from Zhejiang University in China.

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Dale Brown

VP, Business Development and Operations

As VP of Business Development / Head of Operations and part of the Executive Team, Dale leads the strategy and programmatic execution with Figure Eight’s partners. Dale’s career in the technology sector spans decades, centered in Business Development and Enterprise Sales leadership roles. His past successes have two themes: driving business outcomes for partners and customers; and achieving results in emerging trends, markets and technologies.

Most previously, Dale was the Vice President of Business Development for Bitnami, a global leader in application packaging and a major contributor to Kubernetes-related projects. Dale also advises start-ups in the areas of strategy and leadership.

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Benjamin Kearns

VP, Engineering

With 10+ years of full-stack software leadership and business strategy experience, Benjamin has led hundreds of multi-geographical staff, managers, and directors within successful engineering organizations including Mayfield Robotics, Stem, Inc., U1 Technologies, and Verizon. His approach to success is to source the right people, and then find the proper balance of process and freedom to keep people inspired and passionate.

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Jon Kondo

SVP, Sales and Marketing, Appen

Appen acquired Figure Eight in April of 2019. Jon Kondo brings over 30 years of sales and marketing experience to Appen from global big data companies and SaaS-based start-ups, as well as a strong track record of revenue growth. As Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, his responsibilities include leading Appen’s global sales and marketing teams and ensuring strong alignment to deliver continued customer value and revenue performance. Jon brings an extensive background in data, technology, and customer-focused leadership to Appen.

Before Appen, Jon was co-founder and CEO of OpsPanda, a leading application for sales resource management that was acquired by Xactly. Jon’s additional leadership roles include Chief Revenue Officer at Replicon and CEO of Host Analytics which posted record-breaking customer growth every year. Before Host Analytics, Jon was Group Vice President at Oracle and SVP & GM, Americas at Hyperion.

Jon received his BA at UC Santa Barbara as well as his MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management.

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Sid Mistry

VP, Marketing

Sid is a metrics driven marketer, with more than 15 years of experience in B2B and SaaS technology. He began his career in internet security, managing channel and field marketing programs and has had progressive leadership roles within demand generation and marketing at several companies, including Fliptop (acquired by LinkedIn), ThousandEyes and Entelo. His focus is on marketing programs and operations, and to continue leading the brand as the essential Human-in-the-Loop Machine Learning platform.

Sid has a BA in Business Management from the University of California, Santa Cruz and an MBA in Marketing from San Jose State University.

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Preethi Pragash

VP, Finance and Administration

As VP of Finance and Administration and part of Executive team, Preethi leads Figure Eight in the strategic and financial oversight of the company. Preethi brings over 15 years of financial and accounting leadership experience. She began her accounting career with Deloitte India. Prior to joining Figure Eight, she held progressive leadership positions at Jigsaw and Financial Engines. During her tenure at Jigsaw, she was a big part of financial due-diligence team during acquisition by SalesForce.

Preethi holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from India and is a Certified Public Accountant (inactive) from the State of California. She is also a member of The Institute of Cost Accountants of India.

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Alyssa Simpson Rochwerger

VP, Product

Alyssa is a customer-driven product leader dedicated to building products that surprise, delight and bring new value to market. Her experience in scaling products from conception to large-scale ROI has been proven at both startups and large enterprises alike. As Director of Product Management at IBM Watson, Alyssa saw first-hand how thoughtful, sophisticated use of data has the power to transform industries. During her recent tenure at IBM, she oversaw the development of a large portfolio of AI products including vision, speech, emotional intelligence and machine translation.

Alyssa was born and raised in San Francisco and holds a BA in American Studies from Trinity College. When she is not geeking out on data and technology, she can be found hiking, cooking, and dining at “off the beaten path” restaurants with her labradoodle, Scout.

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Eric Shangle

VP, People and Culture

Eric brings over 20-years of experience in technology, science, hospitality, and government to Figure Eight. He acts as a strategic partner for growing the company and in making it a “great place to work.” He recently led the People Operations functions at Enjoy and ZeroCater taking each through hyper-growth phases and early funding rounds while focusing the team on culture and performance.

His time as a naval officer is the foundation for his perspective on coaching and developing teams. Eric is a former Meteorologist/Oceanographer with an M.B.A. from the Naval Postgraduate School, an M.A. in Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma, and a B.S. in Ocean Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy. He has lived and traveled all over the world but calls San Francisco home where he is active in the local community.

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Scientific Advisory Board

Lukas Biewald

Founder & Executive Chairman

Figure Eight

Barney Pell

Founder

Moon Express

Monica Rogati

Data Science &

AI Advisor

Adrien Treuille

Vice President, Simulation

Zoox

Pete Warden

Staff Research Engineer

Google

Adrian Weller

Senior Research Fellow

University of Cambridge

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