Founder & CEO
Dee founded Cognii because of his passion for developing cutting edge technologies that have a real social impact. He has over 15 years of experience in technology and business development in the areas of artificial intelligence and natural language processing industries. Most recently, he was part of the core technology teams at Vlingo and then Nuance that pioneered the virtual personal assistant technology for smartphones such as the S-Voice on Samsung Galaxy devices. He studied PhD in Electrical Engineering at IIT Delhi and carried out post-doc research at Carnegie Mellon University and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. He is passionate about improving the quality and affordability of education for all. His other innovations include a personalized speech recognition system, a semantic search and discovery engine for e-commerce and a healthcare automation technology.
Dee enjoys metaphotography, cooking, ballroom dancing and learning new languages.
John was the Co-Founder and VP of Product and Business Development of Vlingo which was acquired by Nuance in 2012. Prior to Vlingo, he was at Groove Mobile, a leading mobile music platform provider, where he was VP of Engineering. At Groove Mobile, he recruited the technical team and managed all research, development and operations of the critically-acclaimed music application for many mobile operators, including services with Sprint, Bell Canada, Orange, and 3. In addition, he initiated Groove Mobile's key innovations in mobile content search, superdistribution, and recommendations.
Prior to Groove Mobile, Nguyen was Senior Director of Network Speech Products at ScanSoft (now Nuance) where he joined as a result of the SpeechWorks acquisition. At ScanSoft, he managed research and development on all network speech recognition products, including the core speech-recognition engine and application modules for enterprise, auto-attendant, and directory assistance. Prior to ScanSoft, he was Director of Speech Products for SpeechWorks where he managed research and development on the speech recognition engine and platform.
Nguyen holds Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science from MIT and B.S. degrees in Math and Computer Science from MIT.
Dave was the President & CEO of Vlingo which was acquired by Nuance in 2012. He joined Vlingo in 2007 from Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, where he was a General Manager and responsible for leading Nokia's entry into the mobile email market.
Grannan has extensive experience in the mobile and software industries and a proven track record for launching and growing new businesses. Prior to Nokia, Grannan held various executive positions in the wireless and software industries. Early in his career Grannan was part of the communications industry group at Accenture, where he advised new entrants in the PCS market on market entry strategies, and from there he joined Sprint PCS as a General Manager to help launch what became the fastest growing US wireless carrier. Later, Grannan served as President and CEO of Geoworks, a global wireless data software company. Prior to joining Nokia, he was vice president of partners at Openwave.
Grannan started his career in the US Marine Corps where he led a unit responsible for the deployment of spread spectrum wireless position location systems in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in Kuwait and Iraq. Dave holds an MBA from the University of California, Berkeley.
Brian is a technology and product professional with more than 25 years of experience creating and bringing new products to market. He is currently the President and COO of EnglishCentral, a leader in online English language learning. EnglishCentral provides a unique online English language learning experience with a focus on International users.
Previously he was CEO of Avenue100 Media Solutions. During his tenure, Avenue100 broadened its advertising efforts into many areas of online and offline marketing. Avenue100 runs multiple web properties in the education and career space, including its flagship website, CourseAdvisor.com, and education and advice site, StudentAdvisor.com. Previously, he led product management for Nuance Communication's speech division, where he was responsible for driving the product roadmap, strategy and marketing efforts. In his last year at Nuance, he led the product strategy for merging the technology and product offerings of Nuance Communications and ScanSoft, as a result of the merger of these two companies.
Brian has also held positions at Digital Equipment Corporation's research labs and the MIT Artificial Intelligence lab. Brian holds patents in a speech technology, internet search, robotics, and virtual reality. Brian holds a Ph.D., S.M. and BS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.
David advises Cognii with the vision of making learning truly engaging by building a company that makes a difference. He has 20 years of broad based business leadership in growing and scaling companies, as well as experience in strategy, finance, operations, general management, and corporate development. Most recently, David was at Constant Contact, an engagement marketing leader, as part of the team that helped take the company public and scale it to $250M revenues. He has also held leadership positions at Raytheon, Gtech, and Citibank; he started his career in econometric research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. David has an MBA from Duke University and B.A. from Clark University.
When he's not with his wife and two young kids, you can find David on the soccer field or taking a long walk in woods.