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ClearSky Team

Our Team & Culture

At ClearSky, we believe in dreaming big — and executing on those dreams. We're building a culture of achievement where a world-class team comes together to succeed and grow.

ClearSky's culture of achievement is founded on strong core values:

Excellence in what you do, with self-awareness of areas for development

Inspiration of customers and team members through outstanding performance

Learning through collaboration with continuous idea sharing among team members as well as external experts to solve problems creatively

Celebration and recognition of success and achievement across the company, both individual and as a team

Opportunity for rapid growth internally across all areas of the company

Openness to achieve your personal goals with no non-competes

Ready to join a team facing a $15 billion market, based in the hub of Boston’s startup life? Hear more from CEO Ellen Rubin:

Leadership Team

Ellen Rubin | CEO & Co-founder
Ellen Rubin
CEO & Co-founder
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Ellen Rubin is an experienced entrepreneur with a proven track record in leading strategy, market positioning and go-to-market for fast-growing companies. Most recently she was co-founder of CloudSwitch, a cloud enablement software company that was successfully acquired by Verizon in 2011. At Verizon, Ellen ran the cloud products group and was responsible for the strategy and roadmap for all cloud offerings.

Prior to founding CloudSwitch, Ellen was Vice President of Marketing at Netezza (NYSE: NZ), the pioneer and global leader in data warehouse appliances that power business intelligence and analytics at over 200 enterprises worldwide. As a member of the early management team at Netezza, Ellen helped grow the company to $130 million in revenues and a successful IPO in 2007. Ellen defined and created broad market acceptance of a new category, “data warehouse appliances,” and led market strategy, product marketing, complementary technology relationships and marketing communications.

Prior to Netezza, Ellen founded Manna, an Israeli and Boston-based developer of real-time personalization software. Ellen played a key role in raising over $18 million in venture financing from leading US and Israeli venture capital firms, recruiting the US-based management team and defining product and market strategy. Ellen began her career as a marketing strategy consultant at Booz, Allen & Hamilton, and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree magna cum laude from Harvard College. She speaks regularly at industry events and has been recognized as one of the Top 10 Women in the Cloud by CloudNOW, as a Woman to Watch by Mass High Tech and Rising Star Entrepreneur by the New England Venture Capital Association.

Lazarus Vekiarides |CTO and Co-founder
Lazarus Vekiarides
CTO and Co-founder
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For over 20 years Laz Vekiarides has served in key technical and leadership roles delivering breakthrough technologies to market. Most recently, he served as the Executive Director of Software Engineering for Dell’s EqualLogic Storage Engineering group, where he led the development of numerous storage innovations and established the EqualLogic product line as a leader in host OS and hypervisor integration.

Laz joined Dell from EqualLogic, which was acquired in early 2008, where he was a member of the core leadership team – playing a key role in the company’s early success as a Senior Engineering Manager and Architect for the PS Series SAN arrays and host tools. Prior to EqualLogic, Laz held senior engineering and management positions at several companies including 3COM and Banyan Systems.

An occasional blogger, Laz frequently speaks at industry conferences, particularly in the areas of virtualization and data storage. He holds several storage technology patents, as well as a BSEE from Northeastern University, and an MSCS from the Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Mike Macey | VP of Sales
Mike Macey
VP of Sales
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Deb Murphy | VP of Finance
Deb Murphy
VP of Finance
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As VP Finance, Deb is responsible for all the financial, human resource, legal and administrative operations of the company. She brings more than 25 years of operational and financial leadership experience and a track record of success at fast growing technology companies to ClearSky.

Prior to joining ClearSky, Deb served as VP Finance of Netezza Corporation where she helped guide and scale the business from a start up to a highly successful public company. She was involved in all aspects of Netezza’s 2007 initial public offering and its sale to IBM ($1.9B) in 2010.  Before Netezza, Deb was Corporate Controller at Silknet Software where she was a key player in their 1999 initial public offering and acquisition by Kana Software ($4.2B) in 2000.  Deb began her career with PricewaterhouseCoopers where she earned her CPA. 

Deb received her BA from Colgate University and an MS from the Graduate School of Professional Accounting at Northeastern University.  She is an avid hiker and, in her spare time, can usually be found in the mountains of New Hampshire with her family, friends and dog.

Courtney Pallotta |VP of Marketing
Courtney Pallotta
VP of Marketing
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Courtney is a marketing professional and entrepreneur with experience in go-to-market strategy, product marketing, demand generation and client advocacy. She has a passion for authentic marketing centered around creating communities of users that share ideas, adopt and advocate for capabilities that make them successful.

As a founding Netezza marketing team member, she built the demand generation and client advocacy programs and led these teams from launch through IPO and acquisition by IBM. At IBM, Courtney led two acquisitions, grew the big data and analytics portfolio and launched the marketing of the data science and open source initiative for IBM Analytics. At ClearSky, Courtney leads the marketing team and is focused on digital demand generation, deep client understanding and advocacy as key measures of go-to-market success.

Courtney enjoys spending time outdoors with her children and husband running, hiking and skiing.



akamai-logo.svg   Akamai is the global leader in Content Delivery Network (CDN) services, making the Internet fast, reliable and secure for its customers. The company's advanced web performance, mobile performance, cloud security and media delivery solutions are revolutionizing how businesses optimize consumer, enterprise and entertainment experiences for any device, anywhere. www.akamai.com


General Catalyst Partners   General Catalyst Partners is a venture capital firm that makes early-stage and growth equity investments. The firm backs exceptional entrepreneurs who are building innovative technology companies that transform industries, including KAYAK, Demandware, Stripe, Airbnb, The Honest Company, Warby Parker, Datalogix, BigCommerce, Snapchat, HubSpot, and Datto. www.gcvp.com


Highland Capital Partners   At Highland Capital Partners, we have always been focused on one goal: to help great people build great companies. Since our inception in 1988, we have invested in over 200 seed, early and growth stage companies - 90 of which have gone public or been acquired to date. We emphasize a team-oriented approach in providing the right mix of strategic guidance, hands-on leadership and deep industry domain expertise in helping entrepreneurs and their teams to become market-leading organizations.


Polaris_Logo_300x72.png   Polaris Partners invests in exceptional technology and healthcare companies across all stages of their lifecycles. With offices in Boston, San Francisco, and Dublin, we partner globally with an unparalleled network of repeat entrepreneurs, top scientists and emerging innovators who are making a significant impact in their fields and improving the way in which we live and work.  www.polarispartners.com


Board Members

Dave Barrett

Dave Barrett has 18 years of experience as an entrepreneur and operating executive to go along with his 15 years in venture partnership. He joined Polaris in 2000 and serves as a Managing Partner of the firm, focusing on investments in SaaS applications, cloud infrastructure, data science and healthcare technology. As a leader of the Polaris technology practice, Dave sits on the boards of Bitium, Confluence, Egnyte, GrowthHackers, Imprivata (NYSE: IMPR),InsideSales.com and Recurly. He has previously served on the boards of Archivas (Hitachi), Automattic/WordPress,LogMeIn (NASDAQ: LOGM), MarkMonitor (Thomson Reuters), Phytel (IBM) and vKernel (Dell).  Dave also helps partner with emerging, transformative companies like CliQr, Localytics, Lob and Logentries. He divides his time across Silicon Valley, Silicon Slopes, Dublin and Boston.

Dave is an Always-On Venture Capital 100 and Venture Capital East 50 recipient as well as an Always-On “Cloud Power Player”. He’s been embedded in the entrepreneurial ecosystem for years, including serving as a TechStars, Harvard iLab and IBM SmartCamp Mentor as well as a founding member of the Microsoft Venture Capital Advisory Board.  He received his B.S. from The University of Rhode Island.

Andy Champagne

Andy Champagne is Chief Technology Officer and Vice President of Akamai Labs at Akamai Technologies, the global leader in Content Delivery Network services. Akamai Labs is responsible for developing new and innovative technical ideas that extend Akamai’s technical and product portfolio. Mr. Champagne focuses on innovation, creation and evangelism of next-stage technologies and driving future business strategies for Akamai.

Sean Dalton

Sean Dalton is General Partner at Highland Capital Partners. Sean focuses on disruptive technologies in the mobile, enterprise and media markets. He represents Highland on the boards of CENX, ClearSky Data, ExaGrid, Infinio, Movik Networks, and QD Vision.

Recognized multiple times by the Forbes Midas List as one of the top venture capitalists in the industry, Sean’s previous board seats include AccessLan Communications (acquired by Advanced Fibre Communications), Altiga Networks (acquired by Cisco), CCTV Wireless (acquired by TerreStar), CHiL Semiconductor (acquired by International Rectifier), Covergence (acquired by Acme Packet), Envoy Networks (acquired by Texas Instruments), Ocular Networks (acquired by Tellabs), Optasite (acquired by SBA Communications), P.A. Semi (acquired by Apple), Starent Networks (IPO and subsequently acquired by Cisco), and Telica (acquired by Alcatel/Lucent).

Previously Sean acted as Venture Associate—focusing on communications and electronic commerce—at Fidelity Capital. Before that, he was a Product Manager for GTE (now Verizon), leading the nation’s first DSL trial for Internet access. Sean holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, an M.S., Electrical Engineering from University of Pennsylvania and a B.S., Electrical Engineering from University of Delaware.

Paula Long

Paula is CEO and co-founder of DataGravity, where she brings over 30 years of experience in delivering meaningful and game changing high-tech innovation. Prior to DataGravity, Paula served as vice president of product development at Heartland Robotics. In 2001 Paula co-founded storage provider EqualLogic, resetting the bar on how customers managed and purchased data storage. EqualLogic was acquired by Dell for $1.4 billion in 2008 and Paula remained at Dell as vice president of storage until 2010. Previous to EqualLogic, she served in several engineering management positions at Allaire Corporation and oversaw all aspects of the ClusterCATS product line while at Bright Tiger Technologies. Her executive and technical leadership has been extensively recognized, including the New Hampshire High Tech Council Entrepreneur of the Year award, the Ernst & Young 2008 Northeast Regional “Entrepreneur of the Year” and a national finalist for the same award. Her technical awards span systems designs and enterprise software including the EqualLogic and ClusterCATS product lines. She is a graduate of Westfield State College. Paula is also active in the startup community. Outside of high tech, she works with charities creating equality for professional women and girls, as well as with organizations enabling literacy for all children, regardless of economic status.

David Orfao

David Orfao is Partner at General Catalyst Partners. Prior to joining General Catalyst Partners at the time of forming Fund II, David Orfao held the positions of President, CEO or Senior VP of Sales, Operations or Marketing for four publicly held companies. Most recently, David led Allaire Corporation from 1997 to 2000 as President, CEO, and Board Member. During his tenure, Allaire grew from a venture-backed start up to a public corporation trading on NASDAQ. The company pioneered the Internet Application Server market with industry leading products such as ColdFusion and JRUN. In January of 2001, Allaire merged with MacroMedia Corporation which was subsequently acquired by Adobe Systems (NASDAQ: ADBE). During his leadership from 1997 to 2000, Allaire Corporation’s annual revenues grew from approximately $2.4 million to $119.0 million, and the number of its employees increased from approximately 12 to 400.

Prior to his CEO role at Allaire, David held the positions of Senior VP of Sales and Operations at Frame Technology Corporation, Senior VP of Sales, Operations and Marketing at Claris Corporation, and Senior VP of Sales, Operations and Marketing at SQA Corporation. Frame Technology Corporation and SQA Corporation were venture-backed corporations that successfully completed initial public offerings on NASDAQ.

As a Managing Director of General Catalyst Partners, David concentrates on software and technology, i.e. deployment infrastructure, tools, application development and packaged applications within the enterprise software sector. He is based in the firm’s Cambridge office. David is a graduate of Norwich University, earning a B.A. in Business and Accounting.

Ellen Rubin

Jit Saxena

Jit Saxena is a business-savvy entrepreneur, with an impressive portfolio of accomplishments, skills and experience. Under his leadership, Netezza grew and had a successful initial public offering. Previously, Saxena was founder, chairman and CEO of Applix Inc., a leading provider of analytical CRM software that he took public in 1994. While at Applix, Saxena guided the company to a leadership position in the CRM market and achieved an eight-fold increase in market value subsequent to the IPO. Through his vision, the company was continually an innovator in new high growth markets. Prior to founding Applix, Saxena was a senior director at Data General where he was responsible for the development of the company’s software products. At Data General, he held several other senior management positions and built a successful development organization that introduced industry-leading software in many categories.

Saxena earned an MS in Electrical Engineering from Michigan State University, an MBA from Boston University and a B. Tech (EE) from the Indian Institute of Technology (Mumbai). In July 2003, he was named an Ernst & Young New England Entrepreneur of the Year and was recently named a Mass High Tech All-Star.

Lazarus Vekiarides