Alex is a General Partner focusing on growth equity investments at AXA Venture Partners, a $1.2B global venture capital firm, where his portfolio responsibilities include One, Inc. and Contrast Security.
Prior to AVP, Alex was a Principal at New Enterprise Associates (NEA), where his investments included Braintree (online and mobile payments) and Box (enterprise collaboration SaaS). Previously, Alex invested in enterprise software, fintech and Internet companies at Silver Lake, 3i and FTV Capital, where his portfolio included Trustwave (security SaaS), Coremetrics (web analytics SaaS) and Actimize (risk management software). Alex held also operating roles at Microsoft and Trilogy, and was a management consultant at Monitor Group.
Alex graduated with Distinction from Stanford with an MS in Engineering and AB in Economics, and received an MBA from Harvard, where he was named a Baker Scholar.
Chief Executive Officer
Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer
Rick Fitz is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Contrast Security. Prior to joining Contrast, he served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Splunk’s IT Operations & Application Development Market Group. He helped lead the company through multiple acquisitions, launch new products, develop new capabilities and develop new go-to-market strategies. Rick has over 25 years of experience building software for the enterprise and a proven track record of scaling high-growth companies. He received his undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering from the University of the Pacific and his Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Golden Gate University.
Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer
Jeff brings more than 20 years of security leadership experience as Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Contrast. Previously,
Brian was the Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Fortify Software for 10 years. After Fortify, he founded Ritual Software and is now the SVP of Infrastructure and Security Engineering at NetSuite where he implements a wide range of security products. In between, Brian's started several security companies, written a book, authored a number of cybersecurity papers, and is an inventor of a variety of patents.
Brian holds a Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he studied the application of static analysis to the problem of finding security-relevant defects in source code. He's worked on a broad set of topics, including integrated circuit design, cloud-based business applications, and enterprise security.
John W. Thompson
John W. Thompson joined the Microsoft Board in February
Thompson brings over 40 years of experience in the technology industry. Most recently, he served as chief executive officer of Virtual Instruments, a privately held company. Prior to this, he was the Chief Executive Officer of Symantec for 10 years, during which time he helped transform the company into a leader in security, storage, and systems management solutions. Thompson also held several leadership positions during his 28 years at IBM in the areas of sales, marketing, and software development, and he also served as general manager of IBM Americas.
Since 2009, Thompson has been an active investor in early-stage technology companies in Silicon Valley. He currently serves as either an advisor or board member with Liquid Robotics, ReviverMX and Illumio. Previously, he served on the boards of NIPSCO (Northern Indiana Public Service Company), Fortune Brands, Seagate Technologies, and United Parcel Service (UPS).
In addition to his services in the technology industry, he is also a member of the board of trustees for the Wetland America Trust. He has served on the national board of Teach for America and on several government commissions that include the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, the National Infrastructure Advisory Committee, and the Silicon Valley Blue Ribbon Task Force on Aviation Security and Technology.
Thompson received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Florida A&M
Brian Chang is based in New York, first joined Warburg Pincus in 2005 and returned in 2009. He focuses on investments in the Technology, Software, Information, and Financial Technology sectors. Prior to joining Warburg Pincus, Mr. Chang worked at Merrill Lynch in the Media and Telecommunications Investment Banking Group focusing on Corporate Finance and Mergers and Acquisitions transactions.
He is currently on the Board of Directors of Businessolver, Cyren, eSentire, Neogov and Procare and also works with BitSight, CrowdStrike, and RS Energy Group. Mr. Chang received a B.S. with Distinction in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar.
Chief Revenue Officer
Andy Vallila brings more than 17 years of field operations leadership experience in Cybersecurity. He joined Contrast Security from Securonix, where he served as Chief Revenue Officer and led global sales for four years, leading to an acquisition by Vista Equity Partners in 2022.
His career spans executive sales roles at venture-backed startups to private equity-owned and publicly traded companies.
As a General Catalyst XIR and Chief Executive Officer of Lowell Cambridge Partners II, LLC, Paul Sagan leverages his operational experience and domain expertise to support businesses that capitalize on trends in cloud computing, hyper-connectivity and mobility, media and big data. Paul is non-executive chairman of the boards of Datto and L2, which are both General Catalyst portfolio companies.
Paul is a Director of Akamai Technologies, which he joined as Chief Operating Officer and employee #15 in 1998, and served as Chief Executive Officer for nine years until 2013. Paul also is a Director of two other public companies, EMC and VMware. Previously, Paul served as a director of iRobot, and earlier at Dow Jones & Company, Digitas and Maven Networks before they were acquired.
Paul was a senior advisor to the World Economic Forum from 1997 to 1998. He held a number of management positions at Time Warner from 1991 to 1997. He was a Founder of Road Runner, the world’s first broadband cable modem service, and Pathfinder, one of the early Web properties that pioneered Internet advertising. Paul joined Time Warner Cable in 1991 to design and launch NY 1 News, the television news network based in New York City. Paul’s career began in broadcast television news. He joined WCBS-TV in 1981 as a news writer and was named news director in 1987.
President Obama appointed Paul to the President’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee in 2010. In 2015, Paul was appointed as Chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. He is a three-time Emmy Award winner for broadcast journalism in New York, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2008, and the 2009 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the technology category. In 1996, the World Economic Forum named him a Global Leader for Tomorrow.
Paul is a member of the Visiting Committee in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT; a member of the board of ProPublica; a life trustee of Northwestern University and a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern; and a Winter 2013 Fellow and a member of the advisory board of the Shorenstein Center on the Media, Politics & Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He was a member of the Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy.
Dharmesh joined Battery Ventures in 2015 to focus on early-stage venture and growth-equity investments in areas including cloud infrastructure, big data, security and next-generation enterprise applications. Previously, he was a managing director at Intel Capital, where he led the firm’s global cloud and big-data practice and made early and later-stage investments in companies globally. He also assisted in long-range strategic planning for Intel’s $14 billion
Chief Customer Officer
Julie Giannini is the Chief Customer Officer (CCO) at Contrast Security. In this role, Giannini is responsible for accelerating the adoption of the Contrast Secure Code Platform, while driving top- and bottom-line revenue.
Throughout her career, she has transformed organizations by achieving notable revenue milestones, scaled high-growth SaaS technology companies from startup through IPO and led international expansion opportunities leading to multiple billion-dollar acquisitions.
Giannini holds a Bachelor's degree from UCLA in Economics & Business. In addition, she studied at the Sorbonne in Paris during college and completed an Economics seminar at the University of Oxford while working at TIBCO Software. Giannini is the proud mother of two sons and resides in Ross, California with her fiancé.
Ron Gula is currently Chairman of the Board of Tenable Network Security, a company that is transforming security technology for the business needs of tomorrow.
Frequently sought out by media such as the Bloomberg, Forbes and New York Times, Ron Gula is one of the leading cybersecurity thinkers in the industry. Ron started his career in information security at the National Security Agency conducting penetration tests of government networks and performing advanced vulnerability research. He was also the original author of the Dragon Intrusion Detection System and Chief Technology Officer of Network Security Wizards, acquired by Enterasys Networks. At Enterasys, Ron helped many financial, government, service providers and commercial companies to enhance their network security monitoring. He also served as Director of Risk Mitigation for USinternetworking. While working for BBN Technologies and GTE Internetworking, Ron helped to develop one of the first commercial network honeypots and developed security policies for large carrier-class networks.
Ron served as Chief Executive Officer for Tenable from its founding until May of 2016. As a community leader and a passionate advocate for education and scientific research, Ron serves on the Advisory Board for the University of Maryland Cybersecurity Center. He was also appointed to the National Cybersecurity Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Education Advisory Board as part of the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education.
Ron has received special awards for leadership from both The Washington Post and The Baltimore Sun, and was named Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 for defense and security, together with Jack Huffard and Renaud Deraison. He has authored three patents. Ron holds a BS from Clarkson University and an MSEE from the University of Southern Illinois.
Board Member, Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer
Jeff brings more than 20 years of security leadership experience as Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Contrast. In 2002, Jeff co-founded and became Chief Executive Officer of Aspect Security, a successful and innovative consulting company focused on application security. Jeff is also a founder and major contributor to OWASP, where he served as the Chair of the OWASP Board for eight years and created the OWASP Top 10, OWASP Enterprise Security API, OWASP Application Security Verification Standard, XSS Prevention Cheat Sheet, and many other widely adopted free and open projects. Jeff has a BA from the University of Virginia, an MA from George Mason, and a JD from Georgetown.
John M. Jack
John M. Jack (JJ) has worked in the software industry since 1980 in sales, marketing, and executive management. Highlights include Chief Executive Officer at Fortify Software (sold to Hewlett-Packard) and Chief Executive Officer at Covalent (sold to VMware); Chief Operating Officer at The Vantive Corporation (public, sold to PeopleSoft); and, executive positions at Sybase, Inc.
Since leaving Hewlett-Packard in January of 2012, he has served as a consultant to start-up companies and their Chief Executive Officers. JJ currently serves on a number of venture-backed company boards in the cyber-security and other segments. He is also a board partner at the VC firm Andreessen Horowitz.
Samir is managing director of M12 (Microsoft’s Venture Fund), providing technical leadership for the recently announced AI Fund. He will also lead investment activities in other key frontier technology areas such as quantum computing and autonomous vehicles. Prior to this, he was senior director for business development and product management in Qualcomm’s corporate R&D division. In this role, he led early stage product validation, partnerships, acquisitions & strategy for embedded/on-device deep learning. Samir started his career at Microsoft and spent several years in Redmond leading product management/product planning efforts for enterprise mobility before heading to Palm, Samsung, and Qualcomm. He holds a bachelor’s of science degree in mechanical engineering from Cornell University.
Rami is a general partner at Acero Capital, a venture capital firm focused on investments in business software (mobile, cloud, security, infrastructure). Until its acquisition by Oracle, Rami also served as
Chief Information Security Officer
David is an experienced application security professional with over 20 years in cybersecurity. In addition to serving as the chief information security officer, David leads the Contrast Labs team that is focused on analyzing threat intelligence to help enterprise clients develop more proactive approaches to their application security programs. Throughout his career, David has worked within multiple disciplines in the security field—from application development, to network architecture design and support, to IT security and consulting, to security training, to application security. Over the past decade, David has specialized in all things related to mobile applications and securing them. He has worked with many clients across industry sectors, including financial, government, automobile, healthcare, and retail. David is an active participant in numerous bug bounty programs.
Steven T. Mnuchin
Former Secretary of Treasury Steven T. Mnuchin founded Liberty Strategic Capital in 2021 and leads the Washington, DC-based private equity firm focused on strategic investments in technology, financial services and fintech, and new forms of content.
The Contrast Security investment is Liberty Strategic Capital’s second investment since its founding earlier this year. As Secretary of the Treasury and a member of the National Security Council, Secretary Mnuchin helped shape the U.S. government’s approach to cyber threats, including supervising the design of new economic sanctions targeting Iranian, Russian, and North Korean cyber attackers and transnational cyber criminals and using sanctions authorities to combat ransomware attacks. Secretary Mnuchin was also the U.S. government’s lead official responsible for cybersecurity across the financial services sector. In that capacity, he worked directly with top U.S. regulators and chief executives of the largest U.S. financial institutions on cybersecurity preparedness, regulatory coordination, and incident response. In addition, Secretary Mnuchin led the modernization of technology and data security within the Internal Revenue Service to better protect the single largest collection of sensitive personal financial data in the country.
Secretary Mnuchin’s previous private sector technology experience includes his service as the Chief Information Officer of Goldman Sachs, with responsibility for the firm’s global information and technology strategy and operations.
Senior Vice President of Finance
Ann brings over 10 years of experience building and leading finance and accounting teams for high-growth technology companies. She began her career in public accounting, where she held roles in audit and tax work for the Big Four.
Transitioning to corporate finance, Ann developed expertise in FP&A, international tax, treasury, and financial reporting. Most recently, she advised enterprise software, SaaS and PaaS companies on issues around GAAP accounting, systems implementations, business process automation, and post-acquisition integration. Ann holds a BBA from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin and is a licensed CPA.
SVP of Cyber Strategy
Tom Kellermann is the Senior Vice President of Cyber Strategy at Contrast Security. Previously Tom held the positions of Head of Cybersecurity Strategy for VMware and Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Carbon Black Inc. In 2020, he was appointed to the Cyber Investigations Advisory Board for the United States Secret Service. On January 19, 2017, Tom was appointed the Wilson Center’s Global Fellow for Cyber Policy. Tom previously held the positions of Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Trend Micro; Vice President of Security for Core Security and Deputy CISO for the World Bank Treasury. In 2008 Tom was appointed a commissioner on the Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th President of the United States. In 2003 he co-authored the Book “Electronic Safety and Soundness: Securing Finance in a New Age.”
Sharron Reed Gavin
VP, Operational Risk And Data Privacy Officer
As VP of Operational Risk, Sharron ensures Contrast has a robust but practical compliance program and brings over 30 years’ experience. Sharron also serves as our Data Privacy Officer. She has contributed to two start-ups, both of which successfully went public and were later acquired by Fortune 100 companies. Having been with Contrast since 2016, she has shaped Contrast’s Operational Risk framework predicated, wherever possible, on NIST guidelines and best practices. The Operational Risk organization consists of Internal Audit, Business Resiliency, Vendor Governance, oversight of the company’s SOC audit and has a deep partnership with Information Security.
Sharron spent most of her career with American Express where, in her last role, she was VP of Operational Risk/ International Card Operations and a member of the company’s Data Privacy Board.
Vice President of People
As Vice President of People, Babak (pronounced “Bob-back”) is responsible for all human resources functions for the company. He is a Silicon Valley veteran and has mainly gravitated towards the start-up to scale-up growth companies. Babak’s primary area of expertise is everything that has to do with Talent (talent acquisition, development, management, and retention). He is tasked with developing a strong Talent strategy for Contrast and enabling it to scale with Contrast’s culture in mind. Babak lead the people organization in companies such as MySQL, Taleo, and InMobi helping to drive massive global scale-up for them.
Babak’s philosophy is to believe, love, and serve our people to reach their personal best and potential. He lives in Palo Alto with his wife and two daughters. When he’s not at work, he’s at the gym working out, or he’s teaching his 4-year how to swim and taking the older one to volleyball practice. Babak is a UC Davis graduate (go Aggies!)