Meet The Team

 

STEPHEN COGNETTA

President

Stephen is a former Google PM and avid participant in the mental health tech space. Stephen has previously served as a volunteer hotline counselor at the San Francisco Suicide Prevention. He blogs frequently on his personal website, and is a current product management coach at PM Prep.

 

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Azwad sabik

project liason lead

Azwad holds high hopes for the future of the mental health technologies space. He sees approachability of mental health in community conversations as a primary barrier, and is excited to be a part of Hack Mental Health's efforts in breaking down that barrier while growing the community. He's a devout believer in cross-disciplinary problem solving efforts, inspired largely by the teams he's worked with while studying Biomedical Engineering and Robotics at Johns Hopkins University. He hopes to foster great ideas with the HMH community by encouraging and facilitating the collaboration of individuals from all walks of life.

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vinith johnson

Event lead

Vinith Johnson completed his undergraduate degree in electronics engineering in India. His interests in learning more about the human mind led him to pursue a career in neuroscience.  He currently works as a Research Associate at Neuroscape,UCSF, a cognitive neuroscience center which creates interactive experiences to harness brain plasticity. Outside of neuroscience, Vinith is an avid mental health advocate. He loves making music and also likes to travel whenever he gets a chance.
 

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Renalie Gabriel

business lead

Renalie is passionate about the intersection of healthcare and technology. She is an advocate for mental health care and believes that a mental health check up is just as important as a physical check regimen when seeing a doctor for a yearly visit.  She currently works in the field of mental health using a brain mapping technology platform, genomic testing  and utilizing  Big data and machine learning  to find the right medication the first time to avoid the trial and error dilemma. She believes in the power of data driven medicine.
She brings in sales and business development experience from her background of pharmaceuticals, medical devices, diagnostics, and most recently big data in healthcare.

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min shan lim

newsletter lead

Min Shan Lin works as a product marketing and relationship manager at BlackRock supporting BlackRock's technology platform, Aladdin. She is passionate about the ability to use technology to improve the landscape of mental health, and is a big believer in acceptance commitment therapy. Min Shan holds a degree in Economics from USC.
 

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zhifan li

hackathon lead

Zhifan Li is a software engineer at Intuit, working on delivering awesome features for small business. She graduated from Rice University majoring in computer science and psychology. She is passionate about cross-disciplinary efforts that delivers social impact. While she is not delivering and iterating on mini-prototypes in hackathons, she enjoys meditating, running and hiking to declutter her mind.

anne wu

hackathon planning team 

Anne works in Biz Ops & Strategy at SquareTrade and has a background in management consulting from Deloitte Consulting. She serves as a helpline volunteer for the National Alliance on Mental Illness SF and enjoys helping the Greater Good Science Center host community events. Anne is passionate about positive psychology and as a certified yoga teacher, she has found the mind-body connection to be an integral part of mental and emotional wellbeing. She currently works part-time at Ritual Hot Yoga on the weekends. Anne holds B.A. in Psychology and Economics from UC Berkeley.

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sandra sopol

hackathon planning team 

Sandra describes herself as “former science nerd turned UX designer with a solid research foundation.” Having spent years in healthcare as a pre-med student, she is passionate about leveraging design thinking to efficiently and creatively ideate solutions for both mental health and public health issues. She is excited about being a part of HackMentalHealth team and wrote about her experience from the first Hack Mental Health here. Sandra enjoys going on adventures around the world, contributing to social impact, and learning about different cultures and ideas. 

nick dirienzo

hackathon planning team 

Nick is a software engineer on the Application Platform team at Optimizely. He graduated from the University at Buffalo with a B.Sc. in Computer Science; while there, he started ubhacking, the university's annual student-run hackathon. Seeing a psychologist was life-changing for him and now better understands the positive impact of keeping the mind healthy; as a technologist and optimist, he's excited to bridge the gap between mental health care professionals and programmers.

Edith Borrebach

hackathon planning team

dith Borrebach is the Director of Community Engagement for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, San Francisco where she champions underserved communities in gaining access to culturally competent mental health care. She is dedicated to building thriving, empowered and interconnected volunteer communities that provide meaningful support to courageous endeavors. As a Bay Area native, Edith is particularly interested in fostering collaborations with the tech sector toward destigmatizing mental health conditions and increasing access to mental health care. In her spare time, Edith volunteers as a birth and postpartum doula, and enjoys hiking and kayaking her way through Northern California with her wife.

HackMentalHealth Experts

alexa meyer

Alexa is the founder of Orchid and the Mental Health Pop Up. After feeling frustrated that there wasn’t a modern ‘gym’ for mental wellness she started working on making it easier for people to take care of their mental health in the physical world via trial therapy sessions, group workshops, and quiet space. Prior to Orchid, Alexa spent 3 years leading growth and web products at Keen IO. She’s excited to make improving your mind as common, accessible, and modern as taking care of your physical health.

PRAGYA BAJORIA

Pragya is working a Software Engineer at Google on the AdWords infrastructure team. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College, a liberal arts institution in western Massachusetts. Prior to Google, she has done research in autonomous robotics and multi-robot formations. She is passionate about technology, diversity, philosophy and mindfulness.

Nick Dirienzo

Nick is a software engineer on the Application Platform team at Optimizely. He graduated from the University at Buffalo with a B.Sc. in Computer Science; while there, he started ubhacking, the university's annual student-run hackathon. Seeing a psychologist was life-changing for him and now better understands the positive impact of keeping the mind healthy; as a technologist and optimist, he's excited to bridge the gap between mental health care professionals and programmers.

CLARE KENNEDY Purvis, Psy.D.

Clare translates clinical science into engaging and innovative digital products. Currently she works in Clinical Innovation and Research at Lantern, a San Francisco-based digital mental health company. Clare completed her doctoral degree in clinical psychology at the PGSP-Stanford Consortium. Her dissertation research at the Stanford Virtual Human Interaction Lab used virtual reality to develop a new way to measure risk of eating disorder onset among college women. She is the founder of a professional organization bridging the gap between academia and technology, and provides mentorship for early-career clinicians and technologists who want to use technology to solve problems of mental health care delivery. Clare writes about psychology and startups, and presents her research both locally and internationally.

Ashwin kumar

Ashwin is the co-founder of Sway Finance, a machine learning startup aimed at automating accounting for small businesses. Previously he's worked in finance, hollywood and marketing automation. He's passionate about pushing technology to help us with our most complex and pressing problems, especially in the realm of mental health.

Neha Madan

Neha is an Implementation Lead at a startup Hive (focused on making employees productive) and is passionate about the mental health + tech space. Her background is in strategy consulting and finance. She's a big believer in positive psychology, mental fitness and daily meditation.