Investors Leadership and Governance

 

Leadership and Governance

Cerence leadership

It's all about leadership in a world where anticipating the next shift points is critical. These are the people who keep mobility moving.

Cerence Management Team

Sanjay Dhawan
Chief Executive Officer and Director
With more than 30 years of technology leadership and extensive experience in the automotive industry, Sanjay brings a deep understanding of AI and machine learning applications, with particular focus on developing solutions at the intersection of devices, sensors, cloud solutions and data integration. Prior to joining Cerence, Sanjay served as President of the Connected Services Division and Chief Technology Officer of Harman Industries International until 2019. Previously, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Symphony Teleca Corporation since 2010. Sanjay holds a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Brunel University, England, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronics and Communications from REC Kurukshetra, India.
Mark Gallenberger
Chief Financial Officer
Prior to joining Cerence, Mark served as Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Xcerra Corporation from 2014 to 2018. Mark previously served as Xcerra’s Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer from 2000 to 2014. Prior to joining Xcerra, Mark was a Vice President with Cap Gemini, Ernst & Young’s consulting practice. During his six years with Ernst & Young, Mark established the Deals & Acquisitions Group, where he was involved in numerous domestic and international strategic acquisitions, joint ventures, alliances and equity investments. Prior to joining Ernst & Young, Mark served in several technical and management positions within Digital Equipment Corporation’s semiconductor products group. He holds an M.B.A. degree from J.L. Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University and a B.S. in electrical engineering degree from Rochester Institute of Technology.
Stefan Ortmanns
Executive Vice President
Stefan leads Cerence’s Core Products business. Prior to Cerence, Stefan joined Nuance in 2003 and has served as its Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Automotive Division. As GM, he was responsible for hybrid, conversational AI-powered solutions for the digital car and automotive related services that are used by almost all of the world’s leading automotive manufacturers. He previously held other positions at Nuance, including Senior Vice President of Engineering and Professional Services for the former Mobile Division. Stefan started working in the speech industry in 1993. Before he joined Nuance, he worked at Philips Speech Processing, Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies, and the University of Technology Aachen. He holds degrees in mechanical engineering, computer science and a Ph.D. in computer science.
Bridget Collins
Chief Information Officer
Prior to joining Cerence, Bridget served as Nuance’s Vice President, Information Technology since 2017, where she was responsible for the full suite of business applications, and developed and managed Nuance’s Program Management function serving IT, security, the transformation office, and M&A/divestiture activities. Previously, Bridget held IT leadership positions at Progress Software and was in development at Daly & Wolcott (currently Infor). She holds a BS degree from Providence College and an MBA, High Technology, from Northeastern University.
Leanne Fitzgerald
General Counsel and Secretary
Prior to joining Cerence, Leanne served as Nuance’s Vice President, Associate General Counsel, Corporate, Securities and Compliance and Assistant Secretary since 2018. Previously, Leanne served as Vice President, Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary since 2014, and Associate General Counsel Intellectual Property since 2008. During her tenure at Nuance, Leanne led a variety of functions and legal efforts for Nuance’s most strategic matters, including the carveout and sale of Nuance’s Imaging division, numerous acquisitions, privacy, and IP development and management. Prior to joining Nuance, she served in a variety of different functional positions, with increasing responsibility in the legal department at EMC Corporation from 1994 to 2008, starting as patent counsel and culminating as Associate General Counsel. She holds a B.S. in engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a J.D. from the University of New Hampshire, the Franklin Pierce Law Center.
Udo Haiber
SVP, R&D and Services
As Senior Vice President for Research, Development and Services Udo’s team develops the Cerence core technology engines like ASR, NLU and TTS, as well as our Speech Signal Enhancement technology (SSE). On top of those core engines, Udo’s team is also responsible for the cloud platform that serves millions of transactions each month around the globe, and for our edge platform, that eases the car integration of emerging use cases for Tier1s and OEMs. Udo has over 20 years of experience in the area of Automotive UI, and joined the Nuance in 2011. Prior to that he was CTO of SVOX, leading the speech group at Harman, and had various management positions at Daimler. He holds Ph.D. and M.Sc. degrees in Mathematics and Economics from the University of Ulm, where he is still giving lectures.
Egon Jungheim
Senior Vice President Global Sales
Egon serves as Senior Vice President of Global Sales, responsible for our worldwide sales organization and sales Engineering teams. Prior to joining Cerence, Egon held a similar role at Nuance, where he also previously served as Vice President of EMEA Sales, Mobile & Consumer Electronics and Vice President, Sales for Nuance’s Enterprise business in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Prior to joining Nuance in 2003, Egon worked as General Manager and Vice President Sales, Europe at Dictaphone Corporation and in several Senior Management positions at Northern Telecom/Nortel and Nixdorf Computer AG. He got his start in the speech industry in 2000 at Lernout & Hauspie.
Prateek Kathpal
Chief Technology Officer
Prateek brings more than 20 years of experience in fast-moving and high-growth environments to Cerence, where he serves as Chief Technology Officer. In this role, Prateek is responsible for Cerence’s technology vision, core products and product roadmaps. He also serves as head of Professional Services. Prior to joining Cerence, Prateek served as General Manager of AI & IoT Products at View, responsible for leading product strategy, defining and driving the product roadmap, and supporting M&A activity to accelerate growth. Prior to View, he served as VP of Product & Solution Management at Polycom;  Chief Strategy Officer at HighQ; and VP of Product Strategy at Accusoft, which acquired Adeptol, a company Prateek founded. Prateek holds an MBA and a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Instrumentation & Process Control.
Charles Kuai
President Greater China Region
Charles serves as Cerence’s Senior Vice President, Greater China Region. Prior to joining Cerence, he held similar roles at Nuance. Previously, Charles served in a variety of roles in the internet communications and telecommunications industry globally. Charles has held many senior level positions, including CEO & President of Ubee-AirWalk, a fast-growing global Wireless Networking company, SVP & GM Asia of ADB Holdings, a global media solutions company, General Manager Wireless at Ericsson (formerly Nortel), Greater China, a global telecom networking company and Executive Director of Technology at AT&T, a global telecom operator. Charles has completed his MBA and graduated with distinction from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, and also holds a dual bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Southern Methodist University.
Nils Lenke
VP & GM, Applications
Nils has 25 years of experience in the Speech and AI industry. He holds a PhD in AI/Computational Linguistcs, an M.A. in Communication Research and Phonetics, a Master level degree in Computer Science and an M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences. To date he has been awarded 14 patents and is the author of several publications. Nils also represents Cerence on the Board of DFKI, Germany’s leading Research Institute for Artificial Intelligence
Richard Mack
Chief Marketing Officer
As chief marketing and communications officer, Rick will lead global marketing strategy, customer engagement, brand management and program execution for Cerence across all stakeholders, channels and geographies. He has served in a number of roles at Nuance, most recently as senior vice president of Corporate Marketing and Communications where he directed worldwide, integrated programs to support the company’s growth, innovations, and corporate development initiatives. He managed an ever‑evolving blend of media relations, marketing, employee communications, financial communications, social media, public affairs, and branding activities. During his tenure, he helped architect and advance the company’s positioning and visibility, presiding over substantial growth in awareness for Nuance among the industry, consumers, the media, and investors.  Prior to Nuance, Rick held senior leadership communications roles at RSA Security, Mirror Image Internet, and several Boston‑area communications firms.  He holds an economics degree from Connecticut College.
Sachin Sahney
Chief Human Resources Officer
Prior to joining Cerence, Sachin served as Nuance’s Vice President, Human Resources since 2015. Previously, Sachin held human resources leadership roles at Blue Cross Blue Shield, Humana, and Pfizer, where he worked closely with the organizations’ executive teams to drive employee engagement, improve talent acquisition, and inspire human capital advancements across the globe. Sachin holds a B.A. from The University of Delhi and M.B.A. from Southern New Hampshire University.

Cerence Board of Directors

Arun Sarin
Chairman of the Board
Mr. Sarin served as Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Group Plc from 2003 until his retirement in 2008. Mr. Sarin began his career at Pacific Telesis Group in 1984. He progressed through various management positions there and at AirTouch Communications Inc., which Pacific Telesis spun off in 1994, and was named president and chief operating officer of AirTouch in 1997. After AirTouch merged with Vodafone in 1999, he was appointed chief executive officer of Vodafone’s U.S./Asia-Pacific region. He left Vodafone in 2000 to become Chief Executive Officer of InfoSpace, Inc., and from 2001 until 2003, he served as Chief Executive Officer of Accel-KKR Telecom. After his retirement in 2008, he served as a senior advisor to Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. for five years. Mr. Sarin currently serves as a director at Cisco Systems, Inc., The Charles Schwab Corporation and Accenture plc. He previously served as a director of Safeway, Inc. from 2009 to 2015 and Blackhawk Network Holdings, Inc. from 2009 to 2018. Mr. Sarin holds M.B.A. and Master of Science (Engineering) degrees from University of California-Berkeley and a B.S. from the Indian Institute of Technology in Kharagpur, India.
Thomas Beaudoin
Director
Mr. Beaudoin re-joined Nuance in 2017. He serves as the head of Nuance’s Business Transformation Office and is responsible for leading efforts to align and fully leverage technologies within Nuance’s key vertical markets, and drive growth while improving margins and cost structure. Prior to re-joining Nuance, Mr. Beaudoin held several executive leadership roles, including CFO of SimpliVity Corp. (now HPE SimpliVity) from 2015 to 2017; executive vice president and CFO of Nuance from 2008 to 2015; president and CFO of Polaroid Corporation; senior vice president and CFO of Parametric Technology Corporation; and a number of senior finance positions during his 24-year career at Digital Equipment Corporation then Compaq Computer Corporation now Hewlett Packard. Mr. Beaudoin holds a B.S.B.A. degree and an M.B.A. from Babson College.
Marianne Budnik
Director
Ms. Budnik has served as Chief Marketing at CyberArk Software Ltd. since 2017. Prior to joining CyberArk, Ms. Budnik served as Chief Marketing Officer for SimpliVity Corporation (acquired by HPE) from 2014 to 2017. Her prior experience also includes serving as Chief Marketing Officer for Acme Packet, Inc. (acquired by Oracle Corporation) and Chief Marketing Officer for CA Technologies. Ms. Budnik currently serves as a director at Schibsted Media Group. Ms. Budnik holds an M.B.A. from Boston University Questrom School of Business, a bachelor’s degree from Babson College and a Corporate Director Certificate from Harvard Business School.
Sanjay Dhawan
Chief Executive Officer and Director
With more than 30 years of technology leadership and extensive experience in the automotive industry, Sanjay brings a deep understanding of AI and machine learning applications, with particular focus on developing solutions at the intersection of devices, sensors, cloud solutions and data integration. Prior to joining Cerence, Sanjay served as President of the Connected Services Division and Chief Technology Officer of Harman Industries International until 2019. Previously, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Symphony Teleca Corporation since 2010. Sanjay holds a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Brunel University, England, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronics and Communications from REC Kurukshetra, India.
Sanjay Jha
Director
Mr. Jha has served as a General Partner at Eclipse Ventures since 2019. Mr. Jha was Chief Executive Officer of GlobalFoundries Inc. the world’s second-largest semiconductor foundry business from 2014 to 2018. Prior to joining GlobalFoundries, Mr. Jha was Chief Executive Officer for Motorola Mobile Devices from 2008 to 2012, a role he held until the company’s acquisition by Google. Before joining Motorola, Mr. Jha was at Qualcomm for over 14 years, ending his tenure at Qualcomm as the Chief Operating Officer (2006 to 2008) and President of Qualcomm CDMA Technologies (2002 to 2008). Mr. Jha was a member of the board of directors of the Semiconductor Industry Association and also served as Chairman of the Global Semiconductor Alliance. Additionally, he is a member of the board of trustees of UC San Diego and the Salk Institute and serves of the board of several private start-ups. Mr. Jha holds a Ph.D. (2001), and D.Sc (Hon) in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the University of Strathclyde. He was inducted into the US National Academy of Engineering in 2018.
Kristi Ann Matus
Director
Ms. Matus has been an executive advisor to Thomas H. Lee Partners since 2017. From 2014 to 2016 Ms. Matus served as the Executive Vice President, Chief Financial and Administrative Officer at athenahealth, Inc. From 2012 to 2013, Ms. Matus served as Executive Vice President and Head of Governmental Services at Aetna, Inc. Prior to Aetna, she held several senior leadership roles at United Services Automobile Association, including Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from 2008 to 2012. She began her career at Thrivent where she held various financial and operational roles for over a decade. Ms. Matus currently serves as a director at AXA Equitable Holdings, Inc. and AllianceBernstein Holding L.P.
Alfred Nietzel
Director
Mr. Nietzel has been an independent consultant since 2017. From 2014 to 2017, Mr. Nietzel served as the Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President at CDK Global, Inc. Prior to CDK’s spin-off, Mr. Nietzel was with Automatic Data Processing, Inc. since 2001 and served as Chief Financial Officer for the Dealer Services Division, Chief Financial Officer for the Employer Services Division and ADP’s Corporate Controller. Prior to joining ADP, Mr. Nietzel served for 17 years with Proctor & Gamble Inc. in numerous financial management roles in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Mr. Nietzel holds a B.S. degree from Eastern Illinois University.