Meet The Team

Cogito Leadership

  • Joshua Feast
    Joshua Feast
    CEO and Co-Founder
  • Dr. Ali Azarbayejani
    Dr. Ali Azarbayejani
    CTO and Co-Founder
  • David Sudbey
    David Sudbey
    President and Chief Customer Officer
  • Jim Gomez
    Jim Gomez
    SVP of Client Services
  • Shawn Hoyt
    Shawn Hoyt
    VP of People, Office Operations, and Legal
  • Steve Kraus
    Steve Kraus
    SVP of Marketing, Product and Finance
  • Greg Neville
    Greg Neville
    VP of IT and Security
  • Jim Nystrom
    Jim Nystrom
    Chief Sales Officer
  • Dr. Skyler Place
    Dr. Skyler Place
    Chief Behavioral Science Officer
  • Martin Pitkow
    Martin Pitkow
    VP of Growth and Partners
  • Dr. John Kane
    Dr. John Kane
    Distinguished Scientist, Machine Learning
  • Dr. Sandy Pentland
    Dr. Sandy Pentland
    Scientific Visionary and Co-Founder
Joshua Feast
CEO and Co-Founder

Josh Feast is the CEO and Co-Founder of Cogito. He is a serial entrepreneur and thought leader with a passion for creating innovative technology that helps people live more productive lives. Josh has more than a decade of experience as a senior executive and is regularly quoted in Forbes, Fortune, and the Wall Street Journal. He holds an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management where he was the Platinum-Triangle Fulbright Scholar in Entrepreneurship and a Bachelor of Technology from Massey University in New Zealand.

Dr. Ali Azarbayejani
CTO and Co-Founder

Ali has 30+ years of experience as a scientist, engineer, entrepreneur, and developer of world-class computational technologies. His pioneering doctoral research at the MIT Media Lab in probabilistic modeling for 3-D vision was the basis for his first startup company Alchemy 3D Technology, which created the market in the film and video post-production industry for camera match-moving software. Before Cogito, he consulted in software development and developed computational algorithms on the research staff at Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs. He is a co-founder of Cogito and has served as CTO since 2009, building the engineering, machine learning, and product teams and leading innovation.

David Sudbey
President and Chief Customer Officer

David Sudbey is President and Chief Customer Officer at Cogito, where he is responsible for the complete customer lifecycle from sales and strategic partnerships to implementation and ongoing support. David has more than 30 years of experience in the rapidly growing B2B tech space and was previously an Independent Executive Advisor working with growth stage companies. Prior to that, David spent 22 years at customer service technology company, Genesys, ascending through a number of leadership roles, most recently as Chief Customer Officer. Serving as a key contributor in helping grow Genesys from $10M to $1.5B in revenue, in addition to his operational role, David also helped execute numerous corporate activities including the acquisition of more than 20 companies. Before joining Genesys, David spent 13 years at telecommunications company, Nortel Networks, where he focused on call center and advanced applications for the enterprise business in various sales and operational roles.

Jim Gomez
SVP of Client Services

Jim Gomez is Cogito’s Senior Vice President of Client Services, responsible for implementation, support and client retention . He is a Contact Center Professional, with over 30 years of leadership experience, in a wide range of contact center operational and technical roles. Jim began his career as a college student, at MCI Telecommunications, providing customer service. At MCI Jim quickly learned that smart people, armed with the great tools, will deliver amazing results, within a well led contact center operation. After the purchase of MCI by Verizon Jim went on to work with some of the largest contact center enterprises in the world, leading outstanding teams who designed, sold, delivered, and serviced world class contact center services offered through Verizon Contact Center Services. From his success at Verizon, Jim accepted a leadership role at the start up cloud contact center technology company Five9 Inc., where he established Five9 Professional Services as a business differentiator within this space, while helping to grow the Five9 dramatically over five years.

Jim Gomez is a proud husband, the father of five amazing daughters and a US Army combat veteran. His college, military and business careers have allowed he and his family the privilege to live across the US and around the world and they never tire of exploration.

Shawn Hoyt
VP of People, Office Operations, and Legal

Shawn has led operational and legal teams at numerous enterprise software and SaaS companies through periods of rapid growth.  At Cogito, Shawn is responsible for leading People & Culture, Office Operations, Deal Management, and Legal.  Prior to joining Cogito, Shawn led pricing, proposal, contracting, and legal functions for Enterprise B2B SaaS providers SessionM and Optymyze.  Shawn also led pricing, deal operations, commercial negotiation, and legal teams on a global basis for enterprise software and SaaS provider Pegasystems over an 11-year period of sustained growth.  Shawn began his career in legal roles at technology integration firm Sapient and the Boston law firm of Choate, Hall & Stewart.  Shawn has a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.

Steve Kraus
SVP of Marketing, Product and Finance

Steve brings over twenty years of experience in marketing, selling, and delivering customer engagement solutions to the world’s most customer-centric organizations. Prior to joining Cogito, Steve led product marketing for Pegasystems CRM suite of applications, growing the suite from a niche player into a recognized leader for marketing, sales, and service applications. Steve led go-to-market activities for Verint (formerly KANA Software), serving as the General Manager for Verint’s customer experience management applications, and led product marketing and strategy for Chordiant Software’s CRM applications. Earlier in his career, Steve managed consulting teams within Ernst &Young. He has a B.A. in Economics and Accounting from The College of The Holy Cross.

Greg Neville
VP of IT and Security

Greg has led global information security and information technology teams in multiple heavily-regulated industries. At Cogito, Greg is responsible for leading the compliance, information security, risk management, disaster recovery, internal applications, technical infrastructure, and support functions. Prior to joining Cogito, Greg led global technology and security teams at Best Doctors, including executing a complete migration to a cloud-based infrastructure. Greg also led information security and technology teams at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and was a Managing Consultant at PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) where he provided guidance to clients in their CIO Advisory Practice. Greg has a B.S. in Mathematics from the University of Massachusetts.

Jim Nystrom
Chief Sales Officer

For more than 30 years, Jim Nystrom, Chief Sales Officer has helped build and lead high performing sales and customer success teams. At Cogito he is responsible for leading all aspects of sales strategy and execution. Prior to joining Cogito, Jim served as Executive Vice President of Sales at Five9, a leading provider of cloud contact center software. In that role, Jim led teams of sales and customer success professionals, with a focus on sales, adoption, retention, and expansion of Five9 software. During his tenure, Five9’s annual revenue grew from $20M to more than $300M. Earlier in his career, Jim led sales, sales engineering, and customer service teams within the global enterprise sales division of Verizon. Jim holds a degree in business administration and culinary arts from Johnson and Wales University. He is a recreational hockey player, former firefighter, and resides in Boston, MA with his family.

Dr. Skyler Place
Chief Behavioral Science Officer

Dr. Skyler Place combines decades of psychological theory with cutting edge behavioral data to drive positive behavior change. He influences product capabilities and provides thought leadership to clients within enterprise sales and service operations. His team of behavioral scientists, analysts and consultants apply best practice principles and novel insights to ensure higher performance for both organizations and individuals. Skyler has over fifteen years of experience developing and implementing new approaches to better predict and improve human behavior. Prior to Cogito, Skyler led large-scale academic research projects at the intersection of artificial intelligence and behavioral science. Skyler holds a BA in computer science from Colby College, PhDs in psychology and cognitive science from Indiana University, and completed his post-doctoral work in computational social science at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University.

Martin Pitkow
VP of Growth and Partners

Martin leads Cogito’s global client development team responsible for establishing relationships with the world’s most forward-thinking enterprises. Martin is an experienced leader of rapidly growing technology companies, including SuccessFactors, where he managed numerous sales functions helping build the company into the category leader in Enterprise HR, culminating in a $3.4B acquisition by SAP. Post-acquisition, Martin held a number of key executive positions within SAP, driving sales and growth initiatives. Martin has an undergraduate degree from Penn State University and an Executive Certificate from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

Dr. John Kane
Distinguished Scientist, Machine Learning

John Kane is Cogito’s Distinguished Scientist in the area of machine learning and has over a decade of expertise in speech science and technology. At Cogito he leads the research and development of machine learning algorithms to enable real-time processing of audio, speech and other behavioral signals. John is an active member of the speech research community, contributing as a reviewer for leading journals and conferences in the space and as a maintainer of open source speech processing tools.

Dr. Sandy Pentland
Scientific Visionary and Co-Founder

Sandy pioneered reality mining technology and is a leader in pervasive information systems generally.  He helped create and direct the MIT Media Laboratory, is a member of the U.S. National Academies, and is one of the most-cited computer scientists in the world. Forbes named Sandy one of the `seven most powerful data scientists in the world,’ along with founders of Google and the US Chief Technical Officer.

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