President & CEO
Josh has been a social entrepreneur for the past 20 years, creating and leading successful organizations in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors. His ability to spot emerging trends in technology and how they can be used for the betterment of society and the environment have caused him to be considered a leading expert in the field. In spring of 2010, Josh was appointed by the Obama Administration to a working group of President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. He’s been featured in Time, Fortune, Newsweek and Wired, and was even named a New Media Hero by the Utne Reader.
Prior to Rhiza, Josh led MAYA Design’s Information Commons project. Before that, he founded and served as CEO of Green Marketplace, a clearing-house for socially and environmentally responsible products, services, and information, which he sold to Gaiam in 2002. In 1991, Josh founded and served as Executive Director of the EnviroLink Network, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to helping organizations adopt emerging technologies, and was one of the first .orgs on the Internet.
Involvement in the community is very important to Josh. He enjoys speaking with students about being an entrepreneur and has mentored many up-and-coming entrepreneurs who are creating socially and environmentally responsible businesses.
Josh lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his wife, children and dogs. When not starting up a new business, he can be found in his garden tending organic and heirloom vegetables or out hiking in the woods.
Chief Technology Officer
Mike is Rhiza’s Chief Technology Officer and leverages his experience in product design and development to oversee the development and release of cutting-edge features to the Rhiza Platform. Mike prefers to lead by example, and spends much of his time programming and overseeing the company’s product roadmap.
Prior to Rhiza, Mike worked for MAYA Design. He has published papers in pervasive computing, distributed systems, information visualization, and user experience design. He has contributed to the design and development of numerous products.
When not hacking or pondering the future of information technology, Mike likes to travel to offbeat places. He also enjoys feeling guilty about not keeping up with his writing and sketching projects. He loves his wife, cats, and public transit, and maintains a website devoted to the latter.
Maryl Curran Widdows
Chief Financial Officer
Maryl is a Co-Founder of Rhiza and manages the company’s Finance and G&A activities from the West Coast Office in Seattle. Maryl brings more than a decade of experience helping mission-driven organizations expand their operations and grow their customer base.
Prior to joining Rhiza, Maryl worked as a Senior Program Manager at MAYA developing new opportunities to grow the Information Commons. Maryl encountered MAYA through her work in the social finance sector, where she held senior positions with the Opportunity Fund and RSF Social Finance advising and funding social ventures, foundations and start-ups around the world. She’s helped organizations from the industrial centers of Mexico to the heart of Silicon Valley find ways to grow and improve financial performance without sacrificing their mission. Maryl holds an MBA in International Business from Thunderbird. She speaks Spanish and hopes to be as fluent in Portuguese one day.
When she’s not at Rhiza, Maryl can be found hosting jam sessions for local musicians and playing with her daughters, husband, and dog in the park.
Dr. Peter Lucas is a recognized pioneer in the fields of human-and information-centric computing, product design and research and is an Adjunct Professor at the Carnegie Mellon University Human Computer Interaction Institute. As a principal of Rhiza, Peter provides high-level management, strategy, design and engineering guidance to the company.
Peter is also a founder and principal at MAYA, which he established in 1989 to remove disciplinary boundaries that cause technology to be poorly suited to the needs of individuals and society. Peter received his Ph.D. degree from Cornell University, where he studied educational and cognitive psychology and psycholinguistics. His research interests lie at the intersection of advanced technology and human capabilities. He is currently developing a distributed device architecture that is designed to scale to nearly unlimited size, depending primarily on market forces to maintain tractability and global coherence. Peter holds 15 patents and has co-authored a book on letter and word perception.
Peter is committed to supporting the development of civic leaders and serves on the board of the Bayer Center for Nonprofit Management and Coro and is also working to create the Civium Foundation, which will be dedicated to promoting and preserving universal access to public information.
Mike is a Managing Director and co-founder of Draper Triangle Ventures, a member of the DFJ Global Network. Mike has nearly 30 years of experience with start-up technology companies both as a co-founder and early stage investor. Prior to Draper Triangle Mike spent the majority of his career serving as CFO and COO of several successful technology companies, where he directed the financial and business operations, acquisitions, mergers and capital raising functions.
Mike serves on the boards of Unitask, TOA Technologies, ClearCount Medical Solutions, OnShift and Aethon. Mike previously directed the Fund’s investments in ClubCom (acquired by Amer Sports), Active Media (acquired by Precor), Renal Solutions (acquired by Fresenius, NYSE: FMS) and New Media (acquired by Zoom Media). Mike is a Director and Past President of the Pittsburgh Venture Capital Association and a Director of the Ohio Venture Association. He is also a Director and Executive Committee member at Innovation Works, the Ben Franklin Technology Partner of Southwest PA.