John V. Cole
Founder and CEO
John Cole comes to skyTran after a distinguished career in both the government and private industry. After graduation from the U.S. Military Academy, he served as a platoon leader and company executive officer in intelligence and aviation brigades of an Army infantry division. John’s service included work on top secret guided missile systems and ballistic systems. He also managed the overseas deployment of personnel and equipment and served as liaison between U.S. and foreign commanders while a military officer. In the private world, John led a team that built and installed 120kW turbine from concept to finish in 5 months. He also secured CRM/ERP software for a multi-office building products company. Among his other exceptional accomplishments were the equipment used to fabricate DNA microarrays and the development of software and opto-mechanical systems for precisely aligning masks and wafers.
Dr. Robert Baertsch
Founder and VP Software Engineering
skyTran is fortunate to have Robert Baertsch providing his extensive software expertise to the company. Robert has a BA in Electrical Engineering from SUNY, Stony Brook and a PhD in Computational Biology from the Center for Bio-Molecular Science and Engineering at UC, Santa Cruz. At Brookhaven National Labs, Robert worked for the Instrumentation Division where he built detectors for high-energy physics experiments. Robert also was employed at the United Nations where he led a worldwide team of software developers. He also wrote the software for the computer cluster used to analyze mammalian genomes looking for patterns of evolution in the Human Genome Project. Robert has published over 20 peer-reviewed publications (including “Science, Nature, PLoS and PNAS”). He is responsible for skyTran’s linear synchronous motor control software.
J. Lee Wamble
Founder and VP Electromagnetics Engineering
J. Lee Wamble has a combination of skills that suit his position with skyTran perfectly. His BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Washington was centered on analog circuit design, electromagnetics and network analysis. In addition to a career manufacturing professional sound reinforcement equipment, Lee is also an expert in linear motor principles as applied to electro-acoustic transducers. He has manufactured precision automated machinery for the aerospace industry and was instrumental in producing proprietary designs for essential hardware in the areas of magnetic levitation, linear propulsion and switching. Among his many notable achievements was managing technical work on a four-year U.S. government research grant as a Senior Electromagnetics Engineer focusing on levitation, linear propulsion, and switch design.
Founder and VP Mechanical Engineering
skyTran is very fortunate to have mechanical engineer Clark Foster with a history of effective solutions. His first patent was issued while he was a design engineer at Boeing’s wind tunnel complex. Clark is a named inventor on over 160 US patents and has been awarded “Prolific Inventor” by the U.S. Patent office. Clark has a BSME from University of Washington. His career includes being an Expert Witness with the Securities and Exchange Commission. His experience spans wind tunnel testing of hypersonic space vehicle re-entry concepts to military tilt-rotor aircraft. Invited into the field of medical devices development, Clark has contributions from ETO sterilization tech, multiple surgical instruments for treating glaucoma and laparoscopic procedures. Clark has worked on the design, building, and commission of manufacturing plants requiring the coordination of multiple trades and regulatory agencies. His work included a DNA analyzer that won a prestigious “Design Excellence Award”. Clark joined the skyTran project in 2002 and has contributed to its refinement into a solid transportation solution with a proven technical foundation.
Founder and VP Business Development, India
Ankur Bhatnagar, based out of New Delhi, India, leads skyTran’s Indian initiatives. Holding a B. Tech from the storied Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, he also has an M. Tech. degree in Industrial Engineering and Management from the equally prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. Ankur has 17 years of experience perfecting the interface between technology and business. His primary expertise is in driving and commercializing technological innovations. Besides skyTran, Ankur has worked in the areas of mobile commerce, mobile applications, social networks, media technologies and other such emerging technologies. He has previously worked with companies including Wipro, Miebach Consulting, PricewaterhouseCoopers and 2ergo.
William Ferguson, Jr.
VP Business Development, North America
Bill Ferguson has excelled at developing the underlying strategy that drives successful projects as the founder and chairman of The Ferguson Group LLC (TFG), a bipartisan government relations consulting firm with specialties in local government, land use and water resources. TFG specialized in representing local communities on federal issues in Washington, D.C., where the firm is headquartered. Under Bill’s leadership, TFG has been in the forefront of base reuse and redevelopment efforts nationwide. Today, the firm is among the top 25 non-law, lobbying firms and represents more public agencies and public water agencies than any other firm in Washington. Bill represents private sector and local government clients in his specialty areas, including transportation, water and waste water infrastructure, wind energy, community and economic development, Department of Defense base reuse, and land use. Bill received a B.A. in History and Political Science from Michigan State University and attended the University of Southern California, Washington Public Affairs Center; Boston University, Department of Urban Affairs; and Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government.
VP Business Development, EMEA
Thomas Curran, leads skyTran’s EMEA Business Development activities bringing over 35 years’ experience in all aspects of executive level high-tech business development, engineering, and management. Working with firms such as General Dynamics (GD), BAE Systems, Israel’s Elbit Systems Ltd., Israel Aerospace Industries, NICE Systems and several other high-tech startups, in Engineering and Business Development, Thomas covers tech and big ticket programs industry from many angles. Joining the US Navy in 1978 he served in aviation simulation, studying Electronics, Aerodynamics, Computer Science, and Pneumatic and Hydraulic systems. Mr. Curran supported Global Air Forces in Air Combat Training Systems and was at the epicenter in the evolution of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and Internet technology at Executive levels in Marketing and Sales and Business Development. He obtained his undergraduate degree in business Cum Laude (1989) and a Masters in International Business (1994) Magna Cum Laude from National University San Diego California. He is a published author in trade journals, a member of the Press, and a musician.
As Creative Director for skyTran, Roger takes the lead on branding, promoting, and advertising for skyTran including the art direction of all creative materials—both conventional and digital. He recently served as an Art Director for Genentech (a division of Roche) in South San Francisco where he created digital and print materials for a variety of pharmaceutical product divisions. He fits perfectly into the fast-paced world of high-tech and bio-tech because of his corporate background as a Marketing Communications Manager for several national and international companies including: Philips, Palm, and Intel. His creative and presenting skills, first honed as an Architect for the US Forest Service, are perfect for promoting and enhancing all kinds of products and services—big or small, simple or complex. Prior to Genentech, Roger had success as an Art Director for the Office of Education at NASA Ames Research Center where he informed the public, educators, students, and others about NASA’s missions and objectives. He also gained awards and acclaim as a Creative Director and TV Producer for the Collaborative, a communications company headquartered in Boston.
Daniel Margulies, as part of the skyTran team, brings a varied background in both engineering and project business management. His experience in engineering project management covers working with both government and private companies. He worked as a Chief Test Engineer with the Department of the Navy on nuclear submarines. His work in private industry covers a variety of duties with a number of start-up technical companies in the fields of medical instruments, logistics, and agricultural engineering. Daniel’s background also includes managing various non-profit agencies, with an emphasis in science education and the disability community, with a focus on accessibility issues (ADA accommodation), and transportation, in particular. He has also worked as an independent consultant on disability access issues.
Genevieve is the Information Architect at skyTran where she collaborates with teams across the company to define specific requirements for how the design, interface, and underlying technology will work together. She approaches problems from first principles and translates general objectives into concrete frameworks. She has worked as a technical writer and consultant for start-ups in art, analytics, data storage, cybersecurity, agtech, algorithmic trading, and logistics to streamline business processes while maintaining a view of systems as a whole. By organizing, structuring, and labeling content in an effective and elegant manner, Genevieve creates multidimensional information spaces to maximize efficiency inside and outside of skyTran. After graduating from the University of Alberta with a B.A. in Philosophy, she moved to the Bay Area to be closer to the people, technology, and startups that will shape our future.
In her role as Website Director for skyTran, Jane maintains the skyTran website, assists in maintaining the skyTran electronic phone system, and works with the IT team to provide general IT support to the skyTran team. Prior to joining skyTran, Jane enjoyed a diverse career in software engineering, website development, and technical writing at firms such as the Collaborative, Genentech, IBM, Oracle, TiVo, TIBCO, and VMware. She is a graduate of Boston University (BS in Computer Engineering, BA in Mathematics) and Stanford University (MSEE) and is a member of the Society for Technical Communication.
Douglas J. Malewicki
Founder and Chief Visionary
skyTran’s founder and visionary, Doug Malewicki, is a graduate of Stanford University with degrees in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering. Doug worked as a Structural Dynamics engineer at North American Aviation’s Space Division, where all the Astronaut capsules for the NASA Apollo Missions to the moon were built. He worked on Northrop’s B-2 stealth aircraft as a Senior Technical Specialist in Advanced Composites Manufacturing. He has been a Certified Contractor for DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), where he invented new morphing wing UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles). Doug also holds two official Guinness World Records for MPG efficiency. He was a Bonneville Salt Flats land speed record team member on both the world’s fastest electric car, the White Lightning, which reached an incredible 245.523 mph (395 kph) and for the world’s fastest pedal bicycle, where Olympic cyclist, John Howard, pulverized the old motor paced record with an average speed over the measured mile of 152.2 mph (245 kph)!
AIA, LEED AP
George Loisos, AIA, is a founding partner of Loisos + Ubbelohde, an architecture and consulting firm specializing in sustainable design and high performance buildings. Mr. Loisos has extensive design and research experience, including work on lighting controls and design, software for energy modeling, daylighting metrics and whole building energy performance. His projects have received 29 AIA awards, three AIA/COTE Top Ten Green Projects, and three LEED platinum certifications. Mr. Loisos previously lead research programs in building energy use at the University of California, San Diego, and the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis and served as the architectural program coordinator for PG&E, directing groundbreaking projects in daylighting design and productivity. As project manager and research lead for the California Energy Commission, he coordinated research and product development on energy efficient lighting and lighting controls. His work has recently been featured in Design Informed: Driving Innovation with Evidence-Based Design and “Transparency: Literal and Sustainable” in Architectural Record.
Attorney in Israel
Amir Halevy has extensive experience in the fields of Technology and Venture Capital representing numerous venture capital funds and Israeli start up enterprises, including several that have gone on to become publicly traded companies. He represents companies publicly traded both in Israel and the U.S. and has been involved in securities litigation matters in Israel. Amir has been instrumental in the adoption of legislation and regulations that affect investment in Israeli technology companies. He has counseled international investment banks in connection with their activities in the Israeli and international markets, as well as in connection with privatization of government companies in Israel. According to “Chambers Global” the World’s Leading Lawyers 2008 Clients Guide, Managing Partner Amir Halevy garners respect as “a terrific technical lawyer who really knows his venture capital.” Elected three times as a member of the Israel Venture Association’s board of directors, he has played a key role in shaping the market. A venture capital guru, Amir earns respect from peers as “a true professional who knows his stuff.”
Matt Todd serves as the Administrative Partner at Novak Druce and is the Co-Chair of the firm’s New Ventures & Corporate Transactions Practice. He counsels clients on all aspects of domestic and international patent, trademark and copyright use, registration, enforcement, and licensing. He has managed the trademark portfolios of major U.S. consumer product manufacturers and has extensive experience in domestic and international trademark selection, clearance, use, protection, registration, enforcement, licensing, and merchandising. Mr. Todd counsels clients regarding branding, marketing, advertising and competition strategy, ecommerce issues including domain disputes, privacy, advertising, and intellectual property concerns. He structures, drafts and negotiates settlement, license, joint development, technology sharing, and master service agreements. Mr. Todd is also an experienced litigator in the field of intellectual property involving patents, trademarks, copyrights, false advertising, unfair competition, and trade secrets. He works closely with client management to design and implement intellectual property asset management strategies and processes to capture technology and create value from intellectual property portfolios.
Andrew Z. Weaver
Andrew Z. Weaver’s practice at Novak Druce is focused on the prosecution and reexaminations of patents. He has participated in writing and prosecuting patents relating to technologies in the complex mechanical arts field, electronic communications devices, small engines, automotive accessories, cutting tools, and various aspects of the automotive and heavy vehicle industry including engines, transmissions, suspension and communication systems. Mr. Weaver has also participated in preparation of opinions and reexamination proceedings relating to electronic and mechanical technologies. He has participated in both ex parte and inter partes reexaminations. Mr. Weaver has participated in the licensing and worldwide portfolio development of several clients. He has coordinating filings with foreign agents in Australia, China, France, Germany, Korea, Japan, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Prior to graduating from law school, he was involved in the design of metering systems to measure the flow of liquids and gases.
Ariel Schwalb is the business development intern at skyTran and a participant in the Onward Israel 2016 Green Energy program. She is a recent graduate of Rutgers University, where she majored in Environmental Policy (BS), minored in Leadership Skills, and graduated a year early with summa cum laude honors. Ariel won the Rutgers Energy Institute student contest when she proposed that Rutgers replace their university bus system, the second largest bus fleet in the state of New Jersey behind NJ Transit, with a skyTran network. Since then, Ariel has presented the proposal to the Rutgers Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, and has been working with skyTran to get a financial assessment and computer simulation for a potential pilot project across campus. She has received the Rutgers Energy Institute’s support in pursuing this project, particularly from Supply Chain Management professor and former Rutgers Procurement Officer Kevin Lyons.
Christopher H. Perkins
Former CEO and Chief Government Officer
The skyTran Team is saddened by the death of our longtime colleague and former skyTran CEO, Chris Perkins. He passed away, surrounded by family and friends after a valiant battle with a prolonged illness. Chris was a backbone to this company and in his last skyTran role as our Chief Government Officer he was incomparable. His calm demeanor, wise counsel, and positive outlook were such a joy to behold. He was not just our colleague, but our good friend as well.
A graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz (B.A.), and of the University of Southern California (M.A.), Chris’ noted accomplishments were in the field of mechanized, elevated transportation systems and included developing cutting-edge optical technology and manufacturing systems for Universal Studios, Six Flags, NBCTV and the J. Paul Getty Museum.