About Us | Noom Inc.
Saeju Jeong (Co-Founder & Co-CEO, BizDev, Investor Relations) (The Money Guy) provides the core of the Noom spirit and drive. His entrepreneurial journey started at age 19 in Korea, when he established BuyHard Productions, an independent music label chosen as the most promising e-business in Korea in 2001. After early success in Asia, his ambition led him to global markets and New York, where he was the sole representative of an international music company. Saeju was able to build the team for the Asian tour of the Broadway musical "Bye Bye Birdie," without knowing anyone beforehand. Despite his other interests, Saeju has always pursued technology, studying Electrical Engineering at Hong Ik University, working as an IT specialist in the Korean defense industry for 3 years, and completing a variety of IT certifications. At Noom, Saeju contributes his integrity and passion to the team, investors, partners, and users. Saeju is always the loudest guy at the lunch table, cheering on the team's daily accomplishment and celebrating progress. He truly believes Noom's diverse culture is the reason it has succeeded globally.
Artem Petakov (Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Product, Engineering) (The Product Guy) fell in love with programming at age nine, and has not stopped making software since. In his teens, he took key roles in several dot-coms, before going on to study at Princeton University. While earning his B.A. in Computer Science (Finance Minor), he interned at Microsoft's SQL Server and Sun Solaris groups, learning life-long lessons in running software teams. He won the Robocup World Championship in 2005. From 2005-2008, he founded and then led the User-Created Map Content team at Google, a project described as a "pioneering" effort that will "transform" GIS. At Noom, Artem oversees all software engineering and product development efforts.
Ken Nesmith (VP Product Strategy) (VP Product Strategy) started his experience with health and wellness by focusing on DNA. After studying biology and political science at MIT, he was a founding employee at Codon Devices, a synthetic biology firm in Cambridge working on new ways to make DNA. He traveled to China to teach Biology and English before starting his MBA at Wharton, where he studied health care management. He worked in healthcare investment banking with Goldman Sachs and healthcare and technology consulting with BCG, before starting Done.com, a peer-to-peer marketplace, with two college friends. After the company exited, he had the good fortune to get to know the Noom team and their vision and passion for wellness and consumer technology. At Noom, Ken works on product and strategy. He plays the piano and is a casual runner.
Chow Lin (Chief Operating Officer) (Facilitator of Awesomeness) has been optimizing teams and processes as long as he can remember. From being a Google TeamEDGE facilitator helping teams diagnose organizational issues to become even more effective to helping structure lean metrics-based processes at Noom, Chow's raison d'être is to create an environment where everyone can quantifiably excel and execute even more effective. Prior to joining Noom, Chow spent 5 years at Google, leading infrastructure and e-commerce efforts and playing a key role in recruiting, the internship program, and team effectiveness efforts. He has extensive experience in technical roles at numerous companies ranging from early stage startups to large multinationals including Sybase, Financial Fusion, RDS Data Group, and Cogency Semiconductor. At Noom, Chow's primary focus is to help create an organization of very happy people who have the freedom to learn from their mistakes so they can make great decisions and execute rapidly.
Mark Simon (Senior Software Engineer) (Senior Software Engineer) always took his robots seriously, and got quite upset when his mother gave away his childhood Lego creations. While majoring in Computer Science at the Free University of Berlin, he was the mastermind behind the FU-Fighters Robotic Soccer Team, leading the team to two world championship wins and numerous second place finishes. He earned the RoboCup Engineering Award for his real-time vision system, and has published numerous papers. After graduating with honors, Mark co-led the Autonomous Vehicle Group, and earned a place in the semi-finals at the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge Competition. At Noom, like in all of his previous endeavours, Mark is a crucial part of all development efforts.
Ketill Gunnarsson (Senior Hardware Engineer) (Senior Hardware Engineer) graduated with a Master's Degree in Computer Science with an award-winning thesis on automatic robot color calibration. After graduation he became an Assistant Professor in the Artificial Intelligence Group at the FU-Berlin. There, he organized and co-led the group's entry into the 2007 Darpa Urban Grand Challenge Competition, where his team earned a place in the semi-finals. In 2008, Ketill co-authored the paper "Using Reinforcement Learning in Chess Engines" which received the Best Paper Award at CONCIBE SCIENCE 2008, and appeared in the "Journal Research in Computing Science". Ketill joined Noom in 2008 where he creates innovative software and hardware, as well as does the dishes.
Jane Oh (Executive Chef) (Chief of Tasty Operations) graduated from the French Culinary Institute and began her career as a line cook at Cafe Gray, where she developed her commitment to quality and discipline. She then worked as a line cook at Hotel Le Parker Meridien, as well as a variety of top catering companies in New York City. In June 2007, Jane moved to Los Angeles where she worked as a restaurant consultant, and also created her famous braised short rib stuffed burger which was voted the #1 best burger in LA three weeks in a row. Jane returned to New York, and a year later joined Noom. Every dish that she prepares features her special ingredient: love.
Vera Kern (Engineering Artiste) (Engineering Artiste) Vera's earliest childhood memory is visiting an art exhibition by Jean Tinguely. Since then she has never stopped going to museums and art galleries, or caring deeply about art and design. Vera majored in Computer Science at the Free University of Berlin and in Art History at the Humboldt University of Berlin. She started working for internet projects in the art history department. For the past 6 years Vera has programmed research databases, art websites, and e-learning platforms.
Charlie Sneath (Director of Communications) (Typography Junkie) brings a rich background of talent and experience to the Noom team. A graduate of Princeton University, his bachelor's degree from the School of Architecture reflects his continued interest in technology and design. Charlie was involved in a number of creative projects for both web and print, extensions of his senior thesis work on typography, before joining Noom. He is responsible for communicating both the technical work of the engineering team and important company news to our dedicated group of users and business partners.
Amado Batour (Design Guru) (Design Guru) holds a Bachelor's Degree in Architecture, a Master's in Mechanical Engineering, and a love of typography, industrial design, graphic design, and anything that involves interaction. In short, Amado sure knows how to build an eclectic resume. Right out of Architecture School, Amado created AXB Group, a multidisciplinary design and consultation firm; the firm engaged in a wide variety of work including - 3D design, multimedia, identity, exhibit design, marketing, architecture, graphic design, and other types of creative projects. As an adjunct professor, he went on to teach design studio to undergraduates at the School of Architecture and a variety of other courses at the College of Computing Science at New Jersey Institute of Technology. Amado also founded joymonger.com and online gift card trading site that allowed users to merge the values of various gift and trade them with other users. Amado then completed a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering and Product Architecture from Stevens Institute of Technology. During his Engineering training, Amado founded Switch2Health (S2H). He designed a wrist worn product that would track your physical activity and let you earn online points for Rewards. S2H.COM is currently the top online destination for getting rewards for earned physical activity. If there's a design challenge out there, Amado's ready to be seriously distracted!
Gennadiy Shafranovich (Code Whisperer) (Code Whisperer) was born in Ukraine and spent his adolescence in NYC, learning BASIC before Algebra, SQL before Calculus. He obtained a B.S. in Computer Science from Pace University while trying to get a start-up off the ground. Gennadiy has worked in a diverse set of industries, from online dating to banking to media in an attempt to always keep learning. He's an amateur guitar player, avid bicyclist, skiier, snowboarder, and all around fan of getting outside, even in a concrete jungle.
Stacy Lee (Director of Operations) (Multi-Hat Logistician) graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College with a BA in Middle Eastern Studies and Spanish. She spent half of her junior year studying at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and traveling throughout the Middle East, mastering the fine art of haggling. In Jerusalem, she worked on a Palestinian hip hop project for the Truman Institute for the Advancement of Peace. She spent the second half of the year in southern Spain as a student at the Universidad de Càdiz. Upon graduating, she continued her studies in modern Middle Eastern history and politics while working at Harvard University as a research assistant on the Minerva Project. She joined Noom as an operations specialist and technical recruiter.
Tom Joynt (Agile Engineer) (Total Badass) grew up in the "other" Southampton (the one in Ontario, Canada) and currently studies Software Engineering at the University of Waterloo. When he's not learning about programming, he indulges in topics like quantum mechanics and quantum computation. He hacks routers, phones and computers, and isn't afraid to break something to make it better. His professional background consists of mobile, web and application development from large companies to startups. While he's an active guy who enjoys a good workout or a long run, he also makes time to watch ample amounts of comedy, and plays guitar when the mood strikes. All of this keeps him pretty busy, but he's always ready to take on more.
Juni So (Pixel Masseuse) (Pixel Masseuse) completed her degree in Visual Communication Design at the Yonsei University in South Korea. During the summer of 2011, Juni spent time with a small team at the Pangalaktik App Campus, an intensive mobile interface design program in Hungary, to build Crowdspottr. Her portfolio also features logo and branding work she has done for previous clients while in school. At Noom, Juni works on graphics, illustration, user interface design, and concepts for future projects and applications. She loves photography with film (forget the digital stuff), collecting key-rings from the cities she visits around the world, and watching her clothes spin while she's doing the laundry.
Diana Mackinnon (Software Engineer) (Software Engineer) has a background in a variety of fields, including mobile development, government contracts, technical support, and grocery store deli service. An undergraduate Computer Science student at the University of Waterloo, she is interested in user experience, graphic design, and numerical computation. When she's not busy developing software or studying, her hobbies include playing hockey, watching too much TV, and learning to snowboard.
Kelly Fitzpatrick (Wordsmith Extraordinaire) (Wordsmith Extraordinaire) brings to the Noom team her varied experiences as a health and lifestyle writer. She graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor's degree in Print Journalism and no clue what to do with it (ya know, in the real world). She jumped head-first into writing for the web. While she's worked at every level — from the media giants, like Demand Media, to her own hometown newspaper — she's the most passionate about start-ups. She believes Noom has the ability to change people's lives, and writing and editing engaging and interesting copy is her way of contributing to that change.
Matt Sonier (Software Ninja) (Software Ninja) has always be interested — no seriously, since birth — in making great software that helps real people. Born in canada, he's an undergraduate at the University of Waterloo working toward his Bachelor in Computer Science. His interest include machine learning and crunching big data sets with MapReduce. When he's not busy coding, he is usually out enjoying the outdoors and staying active. He enjoys being on the water in the summer and snowboarding in the winter.
Astha Gupta (Sr. Product Manager) is all about delivering compelling user experiences to help Noom members make long-term changes. With a degree in Computer Engineering from University of Waterloo and experience as a software developer and program manager on large scale distributed systems, she loves getting things done and seeing them really have an impact. At Amazon.com she worked on real-time monitoring of large-scale distributed systems before heading to Microsoft Bing to work on map-reduce. Astha's passionate about learning as much as possible about food — everything from eating habits and how they form to food production and distribution. She's also worked on a couple pro-bono software projects, and when she's not busy developing awesome software, she loves traveling. She's visited 19 countries and lived in four, hiked the Inca trail, and made the 200 mile bike ride from Seattle to Portland in two days.
Thomas Payne (Dashingly Handsome Dev) comes to Noom from Savannah River Site where he was the lead developer writing applications to clean up nuclear waste. And while he grew up in Aiken, South Carolina, don't let that Southern accent fool you. Thomas is a personal trainer and martial arts instructor. With a computer engineering degree from Clemson University, he joined Noom to combine his passion for fitness with his talent for computers. He loves staying active with new hobbies — from rock-climbing to guitar-playing to fencing.
Betina Evancha (Ginger Engineer) has been programming for a long time, but only recently realized she could do it during business hours. She graduated from Princeton University with Honors in Mechanical Engineering and a Certificate in Robotics and Intelligent Systems. After spending a year as a management consultant in the consumer packaged goods sector, she decided to leave Excel behind and join the true quants. She is thrilled to be bringing her eclectic experience, business outlook, and plentiful enthusiasm to the Noom team. In her spare time, she drags her friends to karaoke and the most bizarre exercise available in New York, from Hot Yoga to Kangoo to trapeze.
Jon Gold (Customer Happiness Guru) (Customer Happiness Guru) brings a variety of marketing, support, and business experience to the Noom team. Jon earned a BA in Political Science and International Relations at UC Davis, where he was also Managing Editor at The California Aggie. Before braving the New York life, Jon spent three years working on marketing and managing finances at Hotspur Technologies, a venture-backed medical device startup that was acquired by Teleflex Inc. in 2012. In his spare time, Jon enjoys criticizing the Mexican food options in New York, running marathons, listening to bluegrass, and trying out weird seasonal beers. At Noom, he’s helping to get us more in sync with our users, streamline support, and make the app exactly what our awesome users want it to be!
(Design Lead) attended the Ontario College of
Art and Design where he learned how to draw, design, program, and write in the third
person — a skill-set that allowed him to land exciting jobs in design, advertising and
tech companies. Quiet, and reserved, he reluctantly discusses his accomplishments, but
will gladly talk about his cat, Maui, that just the other day did the most adorable thing!
You should ask him about it.
Denise de la Rama (Office Manager) (Office Manager) received her BA in International Relations and Global Business from the University of Southern California. While spending time abroad, she traveled and ate her way through Europe. Upon returning to the States, she spent a stint in fashion publicity in Los Angeles and a few years working for a foodie-focused online media startup, but was ultimately hungry for more. At Noom, Denise brings her masterful organization skills and enthusiastic startup attitude to the team. When she’s not going post-it crazy, you’ll be sure to find her brushing up on the Eater 38 or trying that new speakeasy.
JungMin Lee (Product Marketing Manager) (Product Marketing Manager) graduated from Providence College with a B.S in Biology (Music Minor) and spent three years as a research assistant in a biochemistry research that tested extended lipid hypothesis. She's presented her research at various conferences, and always thought she'd pursue a career in research. However, everything changed when she took a biochemistry-nutrition course during her junior year. The course not only deepened her interest in science but also explored the controversial issues that society is facing. At the time, she also worked as a Resident Assistant where she encountered students' eating disorders and self-image distortion. These experiences eventually inspired JungMin to earn a Masters Degree in Human Nutrition at Columbia University, where her program ranged broadly from the biochemical basis of nutrition to governmental health policies. Living in Manhattan also provided opportunities to interact with people of different backgrounds and to observe various lifestyles as they relate to nutrition and health in a complex urban environment. She believes Noom is a great way to motivate people to change their lifestyle and she focused on product marketing with our NoomKorea Team.
Ruby (Kitchen Clean Up Assistant) (Kitchen Clean Up Assistant) After growing up on the rough streets of Los Angeles and spending some time over in San Francisco, Ruby joined Noom in fall 2012. Ruby's skills include begging for truffle cheese, sniffing out our visitors, and sprinting back and forth across the office. At four years old, Ruby is also our youngest employee.