Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Arjun Gupta, Executive Chairman

Founder and Managing Partner, TeleSoft Partners

Arjun Gupta is the Executive Chairman of Nexant, and the founder and chief believer at TeleSoft Partners, a special situations venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. Over the last three decades, he has overseen investing in and helping build over 60 technology companies, of which over 40 companies have been acquired or gone public to date. At TeleSoft, Arjun manages capital commitments of $625+ million and has established corporate partnerships with Alltel/Verizon, Bechtel, and Deutsche Telekom's T-ventures. He was ranked by Forbes Magazine in the Top-100 technology venture investors on the 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 Midas Lists. Arjun serves on the boards of Nexant, Calient,, L&T, Infotech, L&T Technology Services, the Aspen Institute, and the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI). He is a co-founder and co-chair of YPO Aspen Chapter. Earlier in his career, Arjun was a technology industry specialist with McKinsey & Company, where his clients included Apple, PacBell/AT&T, and PacTel/Verizon Wireless. Prior graduate school, Arjun was a software design engineer, applications engineer and product specialist at Tektronix, Inc. Arjun has an MBA from Stanford University, MS and BS in Computer Science from WSC, and a BA in Economics with honors from St Stephen's College. He is an Advanced Leadership Fellow from Harvard University and Henry Crown Fellow from the Aspen Institute. Arjun is a passionate outdoorsman and lives in San Francisco and Aspen.

Basem Y. Sarandah, Vice Chairman

Founder and CEO, Nexant

Mr. Sarandah is the founder and CEO of Nexant, Inc., and has over 33 years of experience in managing consulting and technology development organizations. He founded Nexant, Inc., in 2000 and grew it into a premier provider of technology enabled services and software to the Utility, Energy and Chemicals industries. Prior to Nexant, Mr. Sarandah was a principal vice president of Bechtel Group, Inc., and general manager of Bechtel's Technology and Consulting (BTeC) unit and Bechtel Software, Inc (BSI). During his tenure, BTeC emerged as a leading provider of technology commercialization and consulting services, and BSI became a leading developer of engineering and work-process software products. Mr. Sarandah started his career as a strategy analyst at the Institute of Asian Pacific Studies and as a management consultant with Arthur D. Little in San Francisco. He has an MBA from San Francisco State University and an MA in economics and BS in physics from the University of San Francisco.

John Gustafson

Former President, Nexant and Senior Advisor, TeleSoft Partners

Mr. Gustafson is a recognized leader in the Utility and Energy Industry who has consistently delivered transformative growth in previous roles building businesses up to $500M in revenue. Mr. Gustafson has experience leading all aspects of strategy, operations, delivery, and sales and marketing.  He brings a strong customer centric focus to creating growth and developing and delivering solutions to meet industry needs. He has significant experience in building a strong ecosystem of key strategic partners, advisors, and analysts to build awareness and drive growth in the market. He has worked closely with partners such as Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, IBM, GE, ABB, and other leading solution providers as well as leading advisors and analysts such as ISG, Everest, HfS, Avasant, IDC, Gartner, Ovum, and others. While at Nexant, Mr. Gustafson oversaw the development and marketing of the new iEnergy and Trade Ally Connect platform. Prior to joining Nexant, Mr. Gustafson led the Energy and Utility Business Unit at Cognizant and has held similar leadership roles at other leading Professional Service and Solution Providers. Mr. Gustafson holds a BS in Industrial Management and an MS in Industrial Administration from Purdue University. 

Gary Cuccio

Former CEO, ATG and LHS Group

Gary Cuccio has over 35 years of broad operating experience in wireless, software, engineering, operations, sales, and marketing. Mr. Cuccio was CEO of ATG, a CLEC based in California, Oregon, and Washington. Prior to ATG, Mr. Cuccio was CEO of LHS group (Nasdaq: LHSG), a Telco billing software supplier. LHS was acquired by Sema, a French software company, in Q3, 2000 for 6.8BB. Mr. Cuccio was also COO of Omnipoint, a PCS mobile wireless carrier which went public (Nasdaq OMPT), merged with Voicestream and the combined company was acquired by Deutsche Telekom to form T-Mobile USA. Mr. Cuccio's experience also includes several positions held at Airtouch, most notably Vice President of Operations for Europe, Vice President Asia, and President of Airtouch Paging. The company was merged with Vodafone in 1999. He has also served as chairman of the board and audit committee chairman of several privately held companies and has helped sell and merge several public and privately held companies. Mr. Cuccio started his career with 27+ years at PacificTel in Operations, Engineering, Customer Service, and Sales & Marketing, ending his tenure there as VP / General Manager. Mr. Cuccio received his AMP from Harvard University, his MBA from St. Mary's College and his BA in Political Science from California State University Los Angeles.

Ashiss Kumar Dash

Global Head of Services, Utilities, Resources and Energy, Infosys

Ashiss Kumar Dash is the Global Head of Services, Utilities, Resources and Energy segment at Infosys. Mr. Dash leads a highly driven global team of client services professionals and technologists focused on creating leading-edge capabilities to help clients navigate their digital journey. In his role, Mr. Dash is responsible for the growth of this amalgamation of verticals, from setting strategic direction, driving financial and operational excellence, to accelerating revenue momentum. Mr. Dash has over two decades of industry experience and the last decade has enabled him to build deep expertise, lead business strategy and consolidate client services for the Resources (Chemicals, Metals, Mining, and Agribusiness) and Utilities (Electric, Gas, Water) sectors. Mr. Dash specializes in global delivery solution design and digital transformation of business processes. He also has expertise in designing value-driven engagement models to ensure long term success in business transformation programs. Mr. Dash has been actively involved in steering committees of transformational programs for several large customers.

His areas of interest include digital transformation of client’s business in his industry sectors as it relates to experience, security, automation, speed and insights. As an initiator of innovative thoughts and opinions, Mr. Dash has represented Infosys at forums such as Smart Grid Interoperability Panel and Microsoft Smart Energy Reference Architecture Advisory Council. He is a keen observer of technology trends and has published perspectives on energy industry trends, process automation and analytics. Dash is an engineering graduate from Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India and has a certification from the Global Leadership Program at Stanford University. Mr. Dash is based in Los Angeles. He is an avid reader and ardent runner.

Brian Frank

Former Vice President, Global Sales Operations, LinkedIn

Brian Frank was one of the principal architects of the LinkedIn Sales Organization, helping grow revenues from $75M to over $6B during a 10 year period. During that time, Brian was responsible for the leadership of multiple diverse organizations with a cumulative size of over 1300 professionals, ranging from Sales Strategy, Sales Enablement, Sales Development, New Hire Graduate Programs, Lead Generation, Advertising Operations, Channels and Partners, Events and EBC, Sales Systems and Tools, Insights and Analytics, and Sales Operations. In addition, Brian helped launch the LinkedIn Sales Solutions line of business in 2012---one of the fastest growing SAAS businesses of all time.

Prior to LinkedIn, Mr. Frank spent ten years at Ariba, an enterprise software company and one of the most successful companies from the era. Mr. Frank began his career at Ariba as Associate General Counsel, managing teams of lawyers working on commercial and strategic transactions. Over his tenure, he led functions ranging from Alliances and Business Development to Real Estate and Facilities, and 2005 was promoted to Regional Chief Financial Officer of the Americas Business Unit. Subsequently, Mr. Frank took on the role of General Manager, Contract Management Solutions, navigating the successful launching a new line of business within the large company.

In addition, Mr. Frank founded the Juniper Fund, a Real Estate Investment Corporation, which had a successful liquidation in 2015 resulting in ARR of over 20%. Mr. Frank is also on the advisory boards of several prominent technology companies, including DocuSign (eSignature), Bluejeans (video conferencing), and Reali (consumer real estate). Mr. Frank holds a BA in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego, magna cum laude, and a JD from Santa Clara University School of Law, holding the distinctions of both Order of the Coif and Order of the Barristers. He is also a licensed Real Estate Broker in California.

John Hamm

Founding Partner, Soda Rock Partners

John Hamm has a diverse background as a technology CEO, a venture investor, and a leadership coach/advisor and Board member. He has been an investor and Board member at Brocade (NASDAQ:BRCD), Ironport (acquired by Cisco), SiliconStor (acquired by LSI Logic), Documentum (acquired by EMC), Truveo (acquired by AOL), and Webify (acquired by IBM). John has excelled in senior leadership/operating roles at several high-growth companies, including Whistle Communications, where he served four years as president and CEO. He held several executive positions at Western Digital in the U.S. and Europe.  John is also an established writer and contributor on leadership, including his popular leadership book, "Unusually Excellent." John has been published in Fast Company, Business 2.0, Business Week, Fortune, Forbes, and The WSJ.

Preston R. Miller

Partner, The Tremont Group

Preston Miller is a founding partner of The Tremont Group, a private investment and strategic advisory firm specializing in energy and the environment. Previously, he was a founding partner of The Beacon Group, a private equity and advisory partnership which was acquired by the Chase Manhattan Corporation in 2000 (now J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.). He was also a partner and co-head of The Beacon Group Energy Funds (an affiliate of J.P. Morgan Partners) which holds a portfolio of investments in companies throughout the energy industry, from upstream to power generation and energy technology. Prior to the formation of The Beacon Group, Mr. Miller spent 14 years at Goldman, Sachs & Co. where he was a Vice President in the Structured Finance Group with global responsibility for the independent power industry, asset-backed power generation, and oil and gas financing.

Gregory J. Rossman

General Partner, Oak Investment Partners

Greg J. Rossmann joined Oak Investment Partners in 2016.  Greg focuses on investments in hardware, complex software, defense, and energy related companies. Prior to joining OAK, Greg was the Senior Managing Director at GJR Capital Management, a firm focusing on public market investments in companies requiring operational, structural, or financial improvement. Prior to GJR Capital, Greg was a Managing Director with the Carlyle Growth Buyout fund, executing mid-market buyout transactions and Growth Equity investments in operating companies. Before joining Carlyle Greg was with Pequot Capital, where he focused on growth equity investments in information technology companies. Previously, Greg was a Managing Director at Broadview International where he managed the firm's global merger and acquisition practice in Hardware, Semiconductor, and Communications Equipment.  Greg holds a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Cincinnati and an MBA from the University of Santa Clara.  He currently serves on the Board of Directors of NETGEAR (NTGR), Sleep Science Partner, and Nexant.

George Schmitt

Chairman and CEO of XG Technology

George Schmitt has over 45 years of broad operating experience in wireless and wireline companies. Mr. Schmitt's experience includes e.spire Communications, Omnipoint Communications, LHS Group, Objective Systems Integrators, PCS PrimeCo, Airtouch Communications, Mannesmann Mobilfunk (Germany), Pacific Telesis, Pacific Telephone and AT&T. Most recently, Mr. Schmitt was Chairman and CEO of e.spire Communications, a provider of voice, data and Internet services to markets throughout the US. Previously, Mr. Schmitt was President and Director of Omnipoint Communications Services (Nasdaq: OMPT) until VoiceStream's acquisition of Omnipoint in 2000. In 2013, Mr. Schmitt was inducted into the Wireless Hall of Fame by the Wireless History Foundation, an organization formed to preserve and promote the history of the wireless industry. Induction into the Wireless Hall of Fame is one of the industry's highest honors, acknowledging the leadership, innovation and achievement of each honoree. Mr. Schmitt received an MS in Management from Stanford University, where he was a Sloan Fellow, and a BA in Political Science from Saint Mary's College. 

Jim Steele

President and Chief Revenue Officer, Yext

Jim Steele serves as Yext’s Chief Revenue Officer and President. Previously he served as President and Chief Revenue Officer of, the industry’s first AI-powered predictive sales acceleration platform. Prior to joining InsideSales, Steele served at Salesforce for 12 years as Chief Customer Officer and President of Worldwide Sales and Operations where he helped grow the company from $25 million to more than $5 billion in revenue. Steele brings more than 35 years of business experience with some of the B2B tech sector’s biggest players, including Ariba and IBM. Steele holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Bucknell University.

Paul Unruh

Senior Advisor, TeleSoft Partners

Paul Unruh has more than 30 years of senior level professional experience in accounting, finance, and management. He is the former vice chairman of Bechtel Group, Inc., where he also served as manager of financial systems development, treasurer, and controller. While president of Bechtel Enterprises, he was responsible for investments in internet infrastructure and privatized power, airports, water, rail, and telecommunications. Mr. Unruh currently serves on the boards of Knowledge Adventure, HomeStore, Symantec, Genuity, and InterGen N.V.