Who is Building NEAR?

The teams that make up the NEAR Collective have built successful companies and implemented some of the only real-world sharded systems at scale

Alexander Skidanov

Alex started his professional career at Microsoft in 2009, then joined memSQL in 2011 as Engineer #1, where he worked for 5 years as Architect and Director of Engineering. He is a 2x ICPC medalist (gold in 2008 and bronze in 2005).

  • ICPC Gold Medal (2008)
  • ICPC Bronze Medal (2005)

Illia Polosukhin

Illia is an ICPC finalist and has more than 10 years of industry experience, including 3 years at Google where he was a major TensorFlow contributor and a manager of the team building question answering capabilities for the core Google search.

  • ICPC Finalist (2008)

Mikhail Kever

Mikhail was a senior software engineer at MemSQL for more than 4 years. He is also one of only 9 people to become a 2-time ICPC world champion.

  • ICPC World Champion (2012)
  • ICPC World Champion (2013)

Evgeny Kapun

Evgeny has been working in the blockchain industry for more than 7 years. He has achieved top awards in ICPC, Google Code Jam, and other programming competitions.

  • ICPC World Champion (2009)
  • ICPC World Champion (2012)

Evgeny Kuzyakov

Evgeny is an ICPC gold medalist (2008) who began his professional career at Google in 2011, started at Facebook in 2015 and left in 2017 to work on Machine Learning and Blockchain research.

  • ICPC Gold Medal (2008)

Alexander Kouprin

Alex has been building high-load, low-latency and machine learning solutions for millions of people for almost a decade. He has also achieved top awards in programming competitions.

  • ICPC Finalist (2011)
  • ICPC Bronze Medal (2014)

Dr Maksym Zavershynskyi

Maksym has more than 10 years of industry experience, most recently at Google where he worked on applied Machine Learning.

Vlad Grichina

Vlad started his career as a professional TopCoder competitor and worked on mobile apps since 2009. He founded a 15 person mobile dev company and worked 3 years at Google on the Play Store.

  • TopCoder Open Finalist (2006)

Marcelo Fornet

Marcelo graduated from University of Havana with BsC in Mathematics in 2017. He is a twice ICPC Finalist and led the first team from Cuba to achieve an ICPC Latin American Champion Award. Right now he is focused on Blockchain research.

  • ICPC Latin American Champion (2017)
  • ICPC Finalist (2015)

Peter DePaulo

Peter is a product-focused engineer with over 7 years of experience in tech who has shipped code to millions of users with pharmaceutical oncology clients such as Pfizer, Merck, and Roche.

Bowen Wang

Bowen graduated from University of Chicago with a Masters in Programming Languages and Machine Learning.

Erik Trautman

Erik is an entrepreneur who started 5 years on Wall Street in 2007 and left to create an open source community which grew to over 100,000 members. He led Viking Education as CEO until its acquisition in 2017.

Aliaksandr [Sasha] Hudzilin

Aliaksandr studied business at UC Berkeley, worked in investment banking under Frank Quattrone, and spent 4 years selling and marketing MuleSoft and MemSQL products.

Yifang Ma

Yifang graduated from the Stevens Institute of Technology with master in Financial Engineering. She built machine-learning-based statistical models and data collection systems for financial applications.

Jake Stutzman

Jake is a designer with over 18 years of experience solving real-world design problems with brands like HP, CAT, ESPN and VMware, along with startups like InVision, Hudl, YouVersion, and Boxee. His mantra: 'Design on Purpose'

  • SP Designer of the Year (2013)

Bo Yao

Bo graduated from New York University with a master's degree in Computer Science focusing on distributed systems and compiler techniques.

Alexandra Breines

Alex is a marketer with 8 years of industry experience. She's built growth strategies that better nurture and convert millions of users. Most recently at ConsenSys, where she focused on community & growth.

Kendall Cole

Kendall is a technologist with 6+ years of experience as a product manager, software engineer, and founder of startups in the US and Europe. Most recently, he worked on improving Ethereum’s developer experience at ConsenSys.

Julie Bissinger

Julie is a builder and operator who spent nearly 6 years at Facebook, leaving to pursue a social impact startup she co-founded. She's an ops pro in building and scaling global teams, driving organizational growth strategies, and growing people.

Sherif Abushadi

Sherif is a teacher with over 20 years of experience in web development and automation with clients such as Stripe and Microsoft as well as the US Departments of Education and Homeland Security. He spent about half that time teaching thousands of adults.

Ashley Crawford

Ashley has been growing communities since 2015. She's built experiences for communities such as Bebo (acquired by Twitch/Amazon) and FetLife. She's designed and implemented strategy for a variety of event types, ranging from charity fundraising to hackathons.

Patrick Tajima

Patrick founded his first internet-based venture in 2012 and has since acquired deep knowledge in UX/UI design and front-end engineering.

Mildred Idada

Mildred brings experience from KKR, where she held several roles during her three-year tenure. Mildred was a member of the Client and Partner Group, actively involved in KKR's business development and capital raising activities. Prior to that, Mildred was a member of KKR's Technology team, responsible for supporting and implementing strategic technology initiatives.

Yessin Schiegg

Yessin has 15 years of experience in finance and private equity. He served on the Ethereum Foundation's advisory board and in various roles in the blockchain industry since 2015. Yessin has a master's degree in finance, is a Swiss CPA, a CFA Charterholder, and CAIA designation.

Stefano Pepe

Stefano is a serial entrepreneur with 7 years of experience building B2B blockchain products. He is active in Italy's Bitcoin community as a book author and TEDx speaker. Most recently, he bootstrapped UniquID, a decentralized and open-source identity as a service for IoT devices.

Chad Ostrowski

Chad has 10 years of engineering experience including launching his own products, creating and teaching curricula, contributing to startups, and building tools at Comcast and Apple.

Yulian Lavysh

Yulian worked at startups for 5+ years preforming various functions ranging from data analytics and digital marketing to operations and sales.

Mike Purvis

Mike pursued a Computer Science degree in beautiful Hawaii where he found success in software competitions. He brings professional experience from large companies in healthcare, food distribution, and entertainment.

Corwin Harrell

Corwin is a product designer with 7+ years of experience working in user research, UX & UI design, front-end development, and design sprint facilitation for projects spanning greenfield startups to established products serving millions of active users. Prior to Near, Corwin aimed to help establish UX best practices for dApps on Ethereum at ConsenSys, where he led design for the Bounties Network.

Ashley Tyson

Ashley Tyson spent the past 7 years aligning diverse teams working on decentralized systems and supporting blockchain ecosystem initiatives. She is a co-founder of Web3 Foundation and DEFCAD. She also worked as a marketing executive helping global brands and tech startups develop growth strategies.

Willem Wyndham

Willem earned his masters from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and enrolled in a programming language PhD program at the University of Maryland, College Park, with a focus on language security and implementation.

Nikolay Igotti

Nikolay began his career at Sun Microsystems and has since worked on projects at Google, Oracle and JetBrains in areas including runtimes, virtual machines, compilers, and hypervisors.

Amos Zhang

As a founder/executive at VC backed startups, Amos worked on scalable public chains, stablecoins, and SaaS products. Amos engaged with a dozen Fortune 500 companies, as well as some of the largest crypto projects in the world. Amos earned a BA in Economics and a MS in Engineering from Brown University.

Michael Birch

Michael earned a masters degree in physics from McMaster University. He is an experienced software developer in blockchain, having worked on implementing consensus algorithms and smart contract runtimes.

Matt Lockyer

Matt is a full stack developer with experience in UX research. He also served as a computer science lecturer and developed curriculum. He wrote the Ethereum ERC-998 standard for Composable Tokens and has been published in a16z's crypto canon reading list.

Sandi Fatic

Sandi previously worked on releasing the Facebook web, analyzing Google traffic and various other blockchain and machine learning projects.

NiMA Asghari

NiMA started his journey in tech as a reporter and community builder. Not long after he immigrated to Germany (from Iran), he dropped out of college to found an AI/robotics startup. After finishing his degree in cognitive science, NiMA found his tribe in the crypto space and has been building/growing AI*Blockchain ecosystems and communities.

Angela Yan

Angela is a digital marketing expert with 7 years of industry experience. She used to work for TBA Global, a famous advertising company in Singapore. She helped numerous brands and tech startups to develop their marketing strategies in China.

Breeze Liu

Breeze is a national award winner in public speaking, she received her B.A. in Peace and Conflict Studies from UC Berkeley. She started her career at a prestigious human rights NGO, soon to realize the flaws of centralization and the lack of transparency in the industry. Before discovering her true passion in blockchain, she worked at Eventbrite.

Homer He

Homer He is an experienced translator and reporter in the blockchain field and has worked at top crypto media companies in China including Mars Finance and Bishijie. He graduated from Beihang University with a master degree in Foreign Language.

Shreyas Narayanan Kutty

Shreyas is a community builder with a strong focus on open source technology. He has built and executed community strategies within tech and open source communities for almost a decade.

Tiffany Gao

Tiffany has academic backgrounds in Computer Science, Media, and Marketing Analytics from NYU and Columbia Business School. She is passionate about connecting data with business insights to build steady growth.

Steve Huang

Steve graduated from UCLA with a B.A. degree in Political Science. As a crypto enthusiast, he entered blockchain world in July 2017. Previously, he worked at Bitcoin Magazine and Fenbushi Capital. Steve has a deep understanding of crypto industry in China

Dr Alex Shevchenko

Alex began his career in high performance computing, working with complex computational problems on hybrid architectures. Alex has focused on blockchain since 2015, when he joined Bitfury and developed Exonum among other projects. Alex has a Ph.D. in Physics and Mathematics.

Josh Ford

With nearly 20 years of IT experience, Josh recently changed direction and dove into software development. Creative coding paired with blockchain technology has become an obsession and continual source of curiosity for him.

Jay Chang

Jay brings a decade of experience in building and launching emerging technology products. He's been immersed in the blockchain space since 2017, focusing on product marketing for leading developer platforms.

Dani Osorio

With over 12 years' experience at high-growth startups, Dani is an open-source proponent on a quest to build the open web. She previously worked on Infura, the Ethereum-based blockchain infrastructure project at ConsenSys. She volunteers as Young Alumni Chair for the Dartmouth Club of NYC, is a contributing writer for the non-profit MISSION Mag, and is a co-creator of ETH New York.

Dmitri Prokopenko

Dmitri is a serial entrepreneur in educational business and co-founder of Block Oracle Capital. He has been in the blockchain space since 2016, having also spent the last few years living in China.

Austin Harshberger

Austin transitioned into technical recruiting after spending 5+ years as an engineer at companies including Apple, Coinbase, GitHub, and IDEO. Austin has a passion for people and looks to bring his unique approach to development to the recruiting ecosystem.


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