Balaji Gopinath is currently the Vice President of Emerging Technology with the Audience & Multi-Platform Technologies (AMPT) group for Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. (TBS, Inc.).
Over the last twenty years, Balaji has worked with leading media and entertainment companies leading their digital initiatives, has held global roles as a GM, SVP of Product and Consumer Experience at both private and public companies; and has previously worked at CTP, Scient, NCR, Delivery Agent, and Nike and was instrumental in helping launch Hotwire.com and Sephora.com among others.
He is a startup junkie, has been a founding member of several companies, is an angel investor, and guided the creation of Turner’s Media Camp to help media oriented startups accelerate what entertainment will look like in 20 years.
Balaji earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Life Sciences from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and works/lives in both San Francisco, CA, and Atlanta, GA.
Debra Baker, Senior Vice President, Global Business Development, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, leads a team focused on driving new business partnerships, models, channels and products across Warner Home Video, Warner Bros. Digital Distribution and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, the three divisions of WBHEG. She is also charged with seeking out forward looking opportunities and recommending new businesses, products and revenue streams consistent with front line innovation to support and drive WBHEG divisional priorities. She develops, evaluates and negotiates opportunities for acquisitions and partnerships, and represents the divisions’ interests in Warner Bros. and Time Warner Corporate activities such as public policy, financial investments, and development of new businesses within WBHEG.
Before her current position, Debra joined Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment when it was formed in 2004 and served as General Counsel and SVP, Business Operations, overseeing Business & Legal Affairs, Business Development and Operations for the video game business. Before joining WBIE, Debra was Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs for Warner Bros. Corporate Business Development & Strategy, following a role as Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs, General Counsel for Warner Bros. Studio Stores.
David Austin is a Senior Director in the Emerging Technology team at Turner and the Program Director for Media Camp. David has over two decades of extensive product and corporate development experience in bringing a multitude of amazing products to consumer markets as well as identifying, acquiring and integrating a wealth of intellectual property, products and teams.
Prior to coming to Turner just over two years ago he was a Senior Director at Apple Inc for two stints totaling over 17 years. During his time there, David delivered a broad swath of consumer products working extensively with Senior Executive Management (including working directly with the late Steve Jobs on the original Keynote and iWork products).
In between the stints at Apple he co-founded a startup and worked for a boutique venture capital firm. Since leaving Apple in 2009 he has also had the privilege of being an investor, advisor, and board member to many angel and venture-backed startups.
David has a BS in Math and Computer Science and holds three patents.
Ethan is an Executive Director at Warner Bros. within the Warner Bros. Technical Operations division and leads Technology and Business Strategy within the Worldwide Corporate Anti-Piracy group. Ethan spearheads several internal- and external-facing innovation initiatives within Warner Bros., focusing on ways to fast-track new and disruptive business models and technologies to prototyping and implementation.
In his Anti-Piracy role, Ethan oversees Warner Bros.’ efforts examining user behaviors online, particularly as they relate to the consumption of Warner Bros.’ content outside of legitimate channels.
Ethan has nearly 20 years of experience in the technology and entertainment space, having worked at multiple start-ups including imeem, Realtor.com, and The Lightspan Partnership, as well as at Fox and Touchstone Television.
Ethan earned a BA in Economics from SDSU and an MBA from USC.
Jeff Eddings is a director with Turner Broadcasting’s Emerging Technologies group and a director of Media Camp, Turner’s accelerator for media startups. He is focused on identifying, building and launch media products that bring material value to Turner and the TV / online video industry.
Before Turner, Jeff ran business products at StumbleUpon, a social discovery platform helping users find great content on the web, where he launched products that quadrupled revenue in two years. Prior to StumbleUpon, Jeff spent seven years at Google, building and working across different products in advertising, search, social and developer products. Previous to Google, Jeff spent a decade in Silicon Valley and Boston starting and building online businesses in areas like software-as-a-service, online merchandising and e-commerce, and web strategy consulting.
Jeff studied mathematics, computer science, linguistics, and music at the University of Florida and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Mathematics with Computer Science and Pure Mathematics concentrations.
As Director of Business Development for Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, Daniel focuses on vetting and implementing new business models and integrating new technologies. He also manages many of Warner Bros. Digital Distribution’s R&D initiatives and works to ensure that R&D informs long-term business strategy.
Prior to joining Warner Bros. in 2011, Daniel served as an advisor to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, where he worked on a range of policy matters.
Daniel started his career at a startup technology company that was acquired by Cisco in 2007.
Sandy Khaund came to Turner from Irynsoft, a mobile education company he founded in 2009 to bring collaborative video-based learning software to mobile devices. In 2011, Irynsoft was named among the Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Fast Company, named a finalist for a World Technology Award, and selected for a Kauffman Foundation fellowship.
Before Irynsoft, Sandy was COO of Piczo, a teen social network that was acquired by Stardoll in February 2009. He also spent six years at Microsoft, where he helped implement .NET design patterns, co-founded CodePlex (Microsoft’s open source collaborative development site), and owned Microsoft’s employee blogging platform (at the time, the largest in the world). Prior to Microsoft, Sandy held various engineering and technical positions at Intel, Boston Consulting Group, and Lockheed Martin. Sandy holds three patents and has published several papers.
Sandy has a BS & M.Eng in Electrical Engineering from Cornell, a BA in Physics from Ithaca College, and an MBA from Wharton.
Maria Sarkisyan oversees marketing and project management for Media Camp at Warner Bros. In addition to her role, she supports other R&D and business development projects. She came to Warner Bros. from UPP Entertainment Marketing, where she spearheaded public relations efforts for multiple accounts including developing communications strategies, pitching and securing press and planning and implementing events.
Maria has a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing with a minor in Psychology from Woodbury University.
Amalia Miller runs marketing and program management for all initiatives related to the Media Camp accelerator program.
Before joining Turner Broadcasting in 2012, Amalia led N. America/APAC marketing for SaaS security startup ScanSafe (acquired by Cisco Systems in 2009), driving digital marketing programs, lead generation, channel marketing with VARs and white label partners AT&T, Sprint and Google, and hundreds of events.
Previously, she managed multiple accounts at boutique PR/advertising agencies serving big brands such as Dolby and PerriconeMD as well as early-stage technology startups including SoonR, Appistry and Aster Data Systems. With nearly a decade of experience working in technology, her passion lies in helping early stage companies.
Amalia has a BS in Cognitive Science with Computing specialization and BA in Musicology from UCLA.
As the R&D Director at Warner Bros. Advanced Digital Services, Kim leads the team that explores emerging technologies, analyzes key trends, and develops innovative solutions to drive growth and opportunities for the Studio.
Kim works with strategic technology partners to identify services for integration into WB’s D2C and B2B products. Part of her role involves working with the tech industry and universities on several key initiatives, including researching and developing prototypes for the advancement of the digital landscape – everything from content discovery and ownership to building a more “connected living room.”
Kim earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of Southern California.
Karen Smetana is a Product Manager with Turner Broadcasting’s Emerging Technologies group. She works on integrating new technologies and investments across the media portfolio at Turner. She is focused on working with technology leaders in building world- class products and experiences.
Before joining Turner, Karen held technical roles at Motorola, Alcatel-Lucent, Blockbuster Digital, among other technology companies. She started her career doing web development and then moved into the mobile space. Karen was on the team that built software for the original Motorola RAZR device – one of the best-selling iconic phones in the world to date. She has a B.A. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a M.S. in Computer Science from DePaul University.
Ron Yerkes brings over 20 years of technology product leadership experience to Turner in his role as Senior Director, Emerging Technologies. Ron’s career in consumer software has closely followed the evolution of TV and media. He was an early pioneer in the convergence of TV and the internet at Microsoft. During a ten year career at Microsoft, Ron held product leadership roles on many TV-related initiatives including WebTV, Ultimate TV, and MSN TV.
Immediately prior to joining TBS, Ron was a product executive at Samsung Electronics. He led a product team at Samsung’s Media Solutions Center where he was responsible for strategy and delivery of software and services for Samsung’s Smart TVs and mobile devices.
Prior to Samsung, Ron was a product manager at Salesforce.com where he helped successfully launch their financial services CRM business. Ron also led program management for Ellie Mae, the #1 electronic mortgage lending platform in the US, which went public while Ron was on the management team.
Ron graduated with honors from the University of Delaware where he received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a minor in Economics.