The OSDV took form in the autumn of 2006 when long-time tech sector colleagues John Sebes and Gregory Miller, met in the midst of the mid-term election rush (and resulting voting controversies) to discuss their individual interests in election reform and voting processes. Both Sebes and Miller have well over two decades of experience as technologists and have spent several years in the venture start-up arena serving VCs and companies alike as venture advisers on product and business strategies and venture fund raising. By September 2006 both had determined to turn their attention and experiences to a benevolent effort to resolve the challenges of today’s voting technology.
E. John Sebes is a Co-Executive Director and Chief Technology Officer. He brings over 20+ years to bear as a strong technology architect, particularly in digital information security and hardened systems. John has been involved start-ups for years, not only starting and growing organizations, but also in rapid experimental development projects. He’s very interested in combining the ”in the trenches” appreciation of technical challenges with a passion for the processes of democracy and in particular voting.
Greg Miller is a Co-Executive Director and Chief Development Officer. He brings 24+ years experience in the tech sector, divided between software development and technology business development. He is also a (non practicing) IP lawyer involved in Internet & technology public policy. His technical experience is in user interface, distributed computing, and digital security. He has significant product management/marketing experience in large firms and start-ups. He’s spent the past 7 years advising start-up ventures. He’s also developed non-profit industry alliance projects. Greg’s interests in voting technology and digital democracy have become his professional pursuit and passion.
Pito Salas is a Principal Technical Architect and a member of the core team of the TrusttheVote Project. He is also a Curacaoan-American Cambridge, Massachusetts-based software developer. While working with the Lotus Advanced Technology Group in 1986, Pito Salas invented a next-generation spreadsheet concept which later became the basis for Pivot Tables in Microsoft Excel. The product was released by Lotus in 1989 as Lotus Improv. In their book Pivot Table Data Crunching, authors Bill Jelen and Mike Alexander call Pito Salas the “father of pivot tables” and credits the pivot table concept with allowing an analyst to replace fifteen minutes of complicated data table and database functions with a few seconds of dragging fields into place. He is a principal architect of the BlogBridge Newsreader software.
This team appreciates the challenges before us, as a nation, with regard to how America votes. And they know that the tech sector has never been afraid by hugely difficult problems. In fact, they believe most technologists aren’t all that interested in something unless it is a seemingly intractable challenge. That’s why they are leading the OSDV community in tackling the problems of voting technology, by creating solutions in the public trust through a transparent process that builds on the principles of open source—some of which dates back to the seminal work of Eric Raymond.