I founded Brilliant Forge, a product strategy and design consultancy, for a simple reason: I like helping companies make better products. No one enjoys poorly-designed products. No one enjoys seeing people struggle with bad experiences. So, I help companies create great product experiences, make their customers happier, and, as a result, grow their business. With more than 20 years of experience in the industry ranging from small startups to large global corporations, I have deep expertise in weaving together business goals, product strategy, and design to create great products and services for consumer markets.
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Prior to founding Brilliant Forge, I was a product and design executive with over 18 years of experience designing, defining, and building consumer products at a number of technology and internet companies in Silicon Valley; including Apple Computer, Yahoo, eBay, and IBM. Most recently, I was the Vice President of Consumer Products for Yahoo! Search, leading a wonderful team of product managers, designers, and developers who were focused on creating world-class Search experiences to compete with Google and Bing.
I began my career at IBM’s Santa Teresa Laboratory while in the graduate program at Rice University in Texas, designing database and development tools. I returned to Rice to complete my doctorate and soon after had the opportunity to move to the Bay area to work as a designer for Apple Computer, where I worked on the Finder for Mac OS 8, OS 9, and OS X, as well as Internationalization and Localization software.
After many memorable years at Apple, I left to join a number of ex-Apple and ex-Sun folks at a startup (Ridge Technologies) during the infamous Silicon Valley Boom. After a couple of acquisitions, spin-outs, and restarts; I founded MindSpan Design, an interaction design agency, where I worked on desktop, web, and mobile solutions for a variety of startups for several years until the Bust. Then, I joined eBay to lead a really great team focused on multiple products for vertical shopping experiences (e.g., eBay Motors, Half.com, Kijiji), platform solutions, and eBay’s international sites. This included moving to Shanghai, China to work with the local team to define and launch several new products and help optimize the Product and Design organization.
I received my Ph.D. in Psychology from Rice University with an emphasis on Human Factors and Human-Computer Interaction. While there, I designed and developed a coaching system for training software users to become more effective and efficient in their daily usage of productivity software (Dissertation). I hold a number of patents, which include design work on web-based products and hardware solutions.