The Team

The Team

Chief Executive Officer

Evan A Thomas, PhD, PE, MPH is the CEO and founder of Virridy. Evan is also the Director of the Mortenson Center in Global Engineering and Resilience and the Climate Innovation Collaboratory at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is a tenured Associate Professor in the Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering Department.

Evan has a PhD in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado at Boulder, is a registered Professional Engineer, and has a Masters in Public Health from the Oregon Health and Science University.

Evan’s technical background is in water and air testing and treatment applied in developing communities through to operational spacecraft. Previously, Evan worked as a civil servant at the NASA-Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas for six years. At NASA, Evan was a principal investigator and project manager in the Life Support and Habitability Systems Branch working on flight hardware for the Space Shuttle, the Space Station, and concepts for Moon and Mars spacecraft.

Chief Business Officer

Lydia is leading Virridy’s business bevelopment and marketing efforts as our Chief Business Officer. Her passion for preserving natural resources supported her work in food systems, Clean Water legislation, community organizing, and the Agtech industry. She's motivated by actionable solutions that help the agriculture industry improve profitability while remaining sustainable. She has a BS in Natural Resource Management from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and enjoys rollerblading and traveling in her spare time.

Chief Scientist

Jason Neff, PhD is the Chief Scientist of Virridy Inc. Jason is also the director of the Sustainability Innovation Lab at Colorado and a Professor of Environmental Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Prior to joining the University of Colorado, Jason was on the Earth Surfaces Processes Team as a Mendenhall Postdoctoral Fellow at the US Geological Survey in Denver. Jason has also worked at Colorado State University and was a visiting scientist at the Max Plank Institute for Biogeochemistry in Germany.

Jason has a PhD in Biological Sciences from Stanford University and is the author of over one hundred scientific publications as well as an introductory Environmental Science textbook.  Jason’s technical training is in the cycling of carbon, water, and nutrients through terrestrial and aquatic systems and he has carried out soil carbon and nutrient cycling research in South America, Africa, Asia, and across the United States.  In the past few years, Jason has focused most of his work on improving land planning and management in agricultural systems in sub-Saharan Africa and working on developing new mobile, modeling, and remote sensing technologies to understand and respond to the challenges of climate change and land degradation in agriculture. 

Chief Technology Officer

Danny specializes in designing, building, and analyzing data from sensors. Danny holds a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from U.C. Berkeley, and is a former Fulbright Fellow and National Science Foundation Fellow. Daniel’s Ph.D. work focused on monitoring cookstove adoption and using machine learning to allow non-technical users to process large data sets. Previously, Danny has worked in the aerospace industry designing landing gear for Boeing and Airbus, and he has served as Chief Technology Officer of Persistent Efficiency, an internet of things company focused on simpler monitoring of electricity usage.

Mechanical Engineer

Taylor's work focuses on the design and deployment of environmental monitoring systems to help address food and water security issues internationally. He leads the mechanical design of Virridy's monitoring systems, using rapid prototyping techniques to develop new sensor systems. Taylor holds BS and MS degrees in Mechanical Engineering, and is working towards his PhD in Environmental Engineering at CU Boulder. In his spare time, he plays music, climbs, bikes, and skis.

Africa Regional Director

Christian is the Africa Regional Director for Virridy, leading practical and systematic support, develops and oversees the implementation of project and programmatic Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) plans in Africa, liaises, helps, and works closely with our partners (public and private entities) to improve informed decision-making through integration and adoption of innovative systems to ensure sustainability-driven implementation of public health-related programs. Christian has a BSc Hons in Environmental Health Sciences, and an MPH in Globe, Culture and Public Health from the University of Eastern Finland. 

Data Scientist

Katie uses machine learning and advanced statistics to assimilate data from sensors and satellites to enable data-driven decision making for sustainable and resilient livelihoods. Katie has an MPH in Biostatistics and is currently working towards a PhD in Environmental Engineering. Katie's work creates predictions and forecasts of groundwater to inform the implementation of early warning, early action services and environmental markets for improved water and food security in drought-prone regions. Previously, Katie worked in large-scale water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) and sustainable energy programs in East Africa and as a biostatistician with a diverse portfolio of research questions.

Environmental Engineer

Emily holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Nevada, Reno and an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Portland State University and a PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Colorado Boulder. For her masters research work she completed a study on unmanned aerial vehicle-based structure from motion biomass inventory estimates.  In this research she quantified the impact of riparian restoration projects on biomass growth using a small quadcopter UAV. Emily also worked for 2 years at Suvelope Solar, a small solar hot water company in Reno, NV where she manufactured, designed, and installed solar hot water systems in residential and commercial settings. In her free time Emily likes to be outside, sew, skateboard, and talk social and environmental justice with her friends. 

Director

An entrepreneur with over 30 years’ experience in investing and building successful businesses throughout the U.S., Kevin is the founder of Accord. Beyond being the driving force behind Accord’s investment strategy, he provides mentorship and guidance to the entire team. As an entrepreneur himself, Kevin brings a valuable perspective to the firm’s investments, connecting with business operators on a personal level. Prior to Accord, he founded and managed several successful businesses, ranging from startups to acquisitions to turnarounds, in a variety of industry sectors including hospice, home health care, hospital, real estate, and lending. He’s seen a lot in his time, which enables him to offer expert strategic guidance to each of Accord’s valued clients. Kevin received his MBA from the University of Texas and his Bachelor of Science in Economics from George Mason University. When he’s not working, he enjoys surfing and spending time with his wife and kids in their home in La Jolla, CA.

From evaluating new investments to providing strategic support to current portfolio companies to managing the team, Chris is responsible for Accord’s overall performance. The firm has grown a lot since he joined as a financial analyst in 2013, and he has evolved along with it, moving from VP to Director to his current position as Managing Director overseeing a robust network of assets and the infrastructure needed to support them. Chris is the first and foremost face of Accord for many clients, and as a flexible, strategic partner dedicated to building lasting relationships, he embodies the values on which Accord was founded. He received both his undergraduate degree in Accounting and his MBA from Oklahoma State University. On the weekends, you can find Chris hiking or at the beach along with his wife, their young son, and their three dogs.

Director

CEO and Executive leader in Startup and NYSE technology based firms. Significant international experience with Cloud based content, Remote sensing and Global Enterprise sectors. Founded and grew two market leading companies for 10 years each- successful exits. Customers and partners ranged from Supermajor Energy, Google, SLB,DigitalGlobe,Airbus, Microsoft and IHSE.Emphasis on Fortune 500 and industry leading customers.

Director

Ron is a highly decorated Fighter Pilot, Test Pilot, Explorer, Entrepreneur and Humanitarian who believes that appropriately designed /targeted social enterprise can solve many of the problems facing our world. Ron traveled 71,075,867 miles in 2,842 orbits of our planet over 178 days in space and 27 hours of EVA during four spacewalks. His last position in the US Government was with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) where Ron led an effort called Unity Node to develop a universal, open source, collaborative platform to enable humanitarian organizations around the world to work together toward their common goals.