Management Team

Tom Horgan, CEO

Tom has more than 30 years of experience in commercializing technologies and services, in multiple market segments. Previously, Tom was CEO of Maxwell Technologies, a long-time NASDAQ-listed San Diego company. Maxwell pioneered the ultracapacitor under his guidance, and launched several innovative technologies that arose from more than 30 years of R&D in the defense sector. Barron’s Magazine described Maxwell Technologies’ transformation from a defense technology company into a commercial supplier as one of the best in America under new management during that period. Previously, Tom was a vice president with Conner Peripherals, a multi-billion dollar disk drive manufacturer that was acquired by Seagate in 1996. He also has held senior management positions at Quantum and Digital Equipment Corporation, where he led the establishment of the company’s Information Security service and product initiative in Europe. Tom is actively involved in the San Diego investment community and serves as a director on several boards of privately held companies. He holds a B.E. in Engineering and M.I.E. in Industrial Engineering from University College Dublin, Ireland.

Dr. Joe Daniele, Chief Operating Officer

Joe Daniele is a recognized world expert in Intellectual Property (IP) and Technology Commercialization, with more than 30 years of experience in IP and Technology Commercialization including generating and extracting value from portfolios of patents, technology, software, etc. He has led numerous R&D and licensing efforts and completed roughly 500 IP licenses and arrangements. He has been elected to the IAM 300, The World’s Leading IP Strategists annually from 2009 to present, is a Certified Licensing Professional, and serves on Boards of Advisers at companies in internet security and cancer diagnostics. Prior to Acorn, he was Senior Vice President of IP and Technology Commercialization at SAIC/Leidos, a $10+ billion Washington DC-based company. There, he established the IP Management and Technology Commercialization functions and generated significant revenue and equity commercializing the IP and technology of SAIC/Leidos and its subsidiary, Telcordia. Prior to SAIC, Joe held senior line management and corporate positions at Xerox, and founded and headed the Xerox Intellectual Capital Business Unit and the Corporate Office for Management of Intellectual Property. There, he was responsible for worldwide licensing and commercialization of all Xerox’ IP including roughly 9,000 patent families and related software and technology. In his long Xerox career, he was a VC Partner in the precursor to Xerox New Enterprises, was Corporate Strategist and Science Advisor to the President, and headed Scanned Imaging Technology, and FWA Ink Jet. Prior to Xerox, he was at Philips, where he managed laser R&D through pilot manufacture for the world’s first compact disc readers and burners, and early fiber optic communications.  He has a BS in Electrical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Physics of Solids both from MIT, and an MBA from the University of Rochester. He has published more than 25 papers, contributed to several books, and holds 22 patents.

Steve Caliguri, Vice President, Telecom

Mr. Caliguri has over 25 years of experience in the telecom and technology industries, and has led the Acorn telecom division since its inception. Previously, he was one of eight founders and senior executive officers at Leap Wireless, Inc., an international wireless telecom company with a portfolio of spectrum licenses (Mexico, Chile, Australia and Russia) that began as a 1998 spin-off of QUALCOMM. As a key member of Leap’s founding executive management team, Steve helped guide Leap’s three-year transition into a major international wireless competitor and the 10th largest U.S. carrier, with 1,000 employees, revenues exceeding$500M annualized, and more than 1 million wireless customers. In addition, Steve has extensive M&A and corporate development experience, and was responsible for Leap’s profitable investment in the Chilean wireless operating company SMARTCOM PCS. Prior to Leap Wireless, Steve was senior director of product management for the CDMA Infrastructure Division of QUALCOMM, where he focused on the development of world-class products for system-level applications including WLL, mobility systems, data systems, and advanced network solutions. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Boston College in 1984 and an MSEE from Northeastern University in 1988. He also attended Boston College’s MBA program.

Dr. Paul Clifton, Vice President, Semiconductor

Dr. Clifton has broad experience in semiconductor process and device engineering, simulation and optimization gained over more than thirty years in industrial and academic R&D. Prior to joining Acorn Technologies, he worked on performance optimization, reliability, variability and yield ramp of multiple CMOS technology nodes as a semiconductor device specialist at PDF Solutions, a Silicon Valley-based provider of advanced process-design integration solutions to the IC industry. Before PDF Solutions, he held senior application engineering roles in TCAD at Silvaco, TMA, Avant! and ISE. He has specific process engineering expertise in plasma etch, CVD, MBE, including compound semiconductors and strained silicon. Paul has also worked as research team leader at the University of Newcastle on a pioneering development program for strained Si technologies in Europe. In addition, he has wide international experience having worked at ISE AG (Zurich, Switzerland), PDF Solutions (Munich, Germany) and held research fellowships at the Universities of Southampton (UK), Tohoku (Sendai, Japan), and at the CNRS (Toulouse, France) and a lectureship in Microelectronics at the University of Durham (UK).

Dr. Andreas Goebel, Director, Semiconductor R&D

Dr. Goebel has over 20 years of industrial and academic R&D experience across material science, semiconductor physics, semiconductor processes and devices. Prior to joining Acorn Technologies in 2008, he worked on optical interconnect silicon technology combined with GaAs Quantum-Dots comb-laser development at Innolume, a premier manufacturer of ‘quantum dot’-based diode lasers and laser modules. Before Innolume, he held increasing strategic positions within the office of the president at Applied Materials, responsible for their optical interconnect development and roadmaps, along with various positions focused on next generation lithography. Until 1999, Dr. Goebel was educated at the Max-Planck Institute for Solid-State Research under Manuel Cardona, one of the founding directors and a most cited physicist, focusing his Ph.D. research on fundamental optical properties of semiconductors, their electronic band structure and electron-phonon interaction. He holds a Masters in Physics from the University of Ulm in Germany; a Master of Science from Oregon State University and a Ph.D. in fundamental semiconductor physics from the Max-Planck Institute in Germany. Goebel was awarded the Otto-Hahn Medal from the Max-Planck Society and holds over 10 patents on process technology, optical interconnect and integration, transistor technology and materials considerations. Andreas is a leading author and co-author of more than 25 peer-reviewed papers.

Board of Directors

Peter Norton, Chairman

Retired computer software entrepreneur Peter Norton is active in civic and philanthropic affairs and is a collector of contemporary art. He serves on the boards of several scholastic and cultural institutions and currently devotes his time to philanthropy through a private family foundation. Raised in Seattle, Washington, Mr. Norton made his mark in the computer industry as a programmer, businessman and author. He is best known for the computer programs and books that bear his name. Peter sold his PC-software business to Symantec Corporation in 1990 to devote time to his family, civic affairs, philanthropy and art collecting. He serves on the board of directors of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Reed College, the California Institute of Technology, and California Institute of Art, among other institutions.

Dennis J. Cagan, Director & Co-founder

Mr. Cagan is a noted high-technology industry director, executive, and entrepreneur.  He has founded or co-founded over a dozen different companies, and has been a CEO of both public and private companies, a consultant, venture capitalist, private investor, and professional board member – 53 fiduciary corporate boards.  In 1979 Dennis was the Keynote Speaker at the first COMDEX Show in Las Vegas.  In 2011 he was elected to the IT Hall of Fame – Channel Wing, administered by CompTIA. In 2013 the Dallas Business Journal and NACD selected him as one of 12 Outstanding Directors in North Texas. Mr. Cagan is primarily engaged in management consulting through his firm Caganco Incorporated, founded in 1983. Caganco specializes in two areas: working with private company ownership and leadership to develop and manage world-class governance through boards (both fiduciary and advisory) and providing his trademarked Shadow CEO™ services comprised of an intense side-by-side approach to helping C-level executives extend their skill set. During his career Mr. Cagan has been responsible for international sales and operations, having actively done business in 35 countries.  In 1976 he founded the David Jamison Carlyle Corp. (his 5th start-up), turning it into one of the country’s largest distributors of computer peripherals. After being included in Inc. Magazine’s first Inc. 100, he took DJC public (NASDAQ) in 1981. Since 1985, in addition to his consulting, Mr. Cagan has served as an interim C-level executive dozens of times – often for companies where he was already a member of the board of directors.

Dr. Thomas E. Everhart, Director

Dr. Everhart is one of the pioneers in the fabrication of electronic devices using electron beam lithography, and has received numerous honors, awards and other recognition for his work. He received the IEEE Centennial Medal in 1984, the ASEE Benjamin Garver Lamme Award in 1989, and the Centennial Medallion in 1993, was elected a foreign member of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 1990, and received the IEEE Founders Medal and Okawa Prize, both in 2002. He also has been a member of various national and international societies including the Council of the National Academy of Engineering, the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board (where he was chairman) and the Council on Competitiveness (where he was vice chairman and continues to serve on the executive committee). He has also conducted continuing dialogues with federal agencies concerning their support of research and teaching on campus, and with NASA in support of JPL. In addition, he sat on the boards of several large corporations including General Motors, Hewlett-Packard, and Raytheon Company. Building on his early work in the field of scanning electron microscopy, Dr. Everhart’s research provided much of the basis for forming microstructures using scanning electron beams to form desired patterns on substrates. Everhart-Thornley detectors are still used in scanning electron microscopes even though the first one was used in 1956. In 1978, he was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering for contributions in this area, which also led to his election as a member of the Böhmische Physikalische Gesellschaft. Dr. Everhart also is a Fellow of the American Association of the Advancement of Science, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Dr. Everhard also served as Caltech’s president and as a professor of electrical engineering and applied physics for 10 years until 1997, overseeing construction of the Beckman Institute, Keck Observatory in Hawaii, Braun Athletic facility, Moore Laboratory of Engineering, Avery House, and the Fairchild Library. He also led the successful completion of the $350 million Campaign for Caltech, and in November 1998 He came to Caltech from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he was Chancellor and professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering from 1984 to 1987. Prior to that, he was dean of the College of Engineering and professor of Electrical Engineering at Cornell University. Before joining Cornell, he spent 20 years on the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, after earning his PhD in 1958.

Michael D. Hartogs

Michael Hartogs is the former senior vice president and lead counsel for Qualcomm’s Technology Licensing (QTL) division. He has devoted his entire legal career to handling intellectual property and antitrust/competition matters for technology companies that compete in dynamic industries. Mr. Hartogs spent 12 of his 20-plus years practicing law as the lead lawyer for Qualcomm’s patent licensing business and headed the legal team involved in all of Qualcomm’s 3G and 4G licensing activities, which becames one of the most successful patent licensing businesses in the world. He was also a key advisor for many of Qualcomm’s non-licensing strategic transactions and acquisitions. Since 1999, Mr. Hartogs served as a Qualcomm company spokesman involved in advocacy matters relating to technology licensing before government agencies in the U.S., Asia and Europe. Mr. Hartogs retired from Qualcomm in 2012 to pursue private investment opportunities. Prior to Qualcomm, he began his career as a patent attorney with the Silicon Valley firm Blakely, Sokoloff, Taylor and Zafman serving clients such as Intel, Apple, Sun Microsystems, Silicon Graphics and many startup technology companies. He later moved to McCutchen, Doyle, Brown & Enersen where he provided general intellectual property counseling services primarily to early stage technology companies. Thereafter, Mr. Hartogs was the lead intellectual property counsel for disk drive manufacturer Iomega Corp during its global battle against international piracy. He remains an active member of is admitted to the State Bar of California and is a patent attorney registered to practice before the United State Patent and Trademark Office. Mr. Hartogs has an undergraduate degree in Engineering Physics from the University of Arizona and a JD from The George Washington University Law School.

Tom L. Horgan, CEO

Tom has more than 30 years of experience in commercializing technologies and services, in multiple market segments. Previously, Tom was CEO of Maxwell Technologies, a long-time NASDAQ-listed San Diego company. Maxwell pioneered the ultracapacitor under his guidance, and launched several innovative technologies that arose from more than 30 years of R&D in the defense sector. Barron’s Magazine described Maxwell Technologies’ transformation from a defense technology company into a commercial supplier as one of the best in America under new management during that period. Previously, Tom was a vice president with Conner Peripherals, a multi-billion dollar disk drive manufacturer that was acquired by Seagate in 1996. He also has held senior management positions at Quantum and Digital Equipment Corporation, where he led the establishment of the company’s Information Security service and product initiative in Europe. Tom is actively involved in the San Diego investment community and serves as a director on several boards of privately held companies. He holds a B.E. in Engineering and M.I.E. in Industrial Engineering from University College Dublin, Ireland.

Bill Walker, Director

Bill Walker retired in 2004 as the senior vice president and general manager of Motorola’s Semiconductor Products Sector (SPS), the world leader in embedded semiconductor solutions. During his 36-year career with Motorola he also served as the SPS chief operating officer, with responsibility for driving strategic direction and profitability for a business averaging $6.5 billion in global annual sales, that operated 38 semiconductor factors worldwide with a capital value exceeding $8 billion. Bill successfully managed Motorola’s semiconductor business through some of the industry’s most turbulent times, and was responsible for more than 24,000 employees worldwide and key customer accounts including General Motors, Nokia and Apple. Bill has served on the Board of Directors of Guaranty Financial Group, and as a council member on the External Advisory and Development Council at Texas A&M University, and has also served on the SEMATECH Board of Directors, the Texas Skills Development Panel (appointed by the governor) and on the Management Board at the University of Texas’ MBA Concentration in Operations Management. His commitment to supporting the community has been reflected in his involvement with the Austin Independent School District’s Partners in Education and the South Austin Hospital Board of Directors. Bill has maintained active participation in the International Trade Partners’ Conference and is credited with the initiation of the worldwide effort to develop manufacturing capabilities for 300mm wafers. He attended the University of North Texas.

Board of Advisors

Dr. Forest Baskett

Forest joined NEA in 1999 as a Venture Partner and became a General Partner in 2004. Forest focuses on information and energy technology investments and is the NEA representative on the boards of Arch Rock, AstroWatt, Audience, Chelsio Communications, Fulcrum Microsystems, Serious Materials, SiBEAM and SuVolta. He also assists Alta Devices, Aprius, Azuray Technologies, Bandgap Engineering, Conviva, Fusion-io, Illumitex, Luxtera, NovaTorque, Solar Junction, Solar Storage Company, Svaya Nanotechnologies, Tableau Software and Tintri as either a board member, observer or advisor, usually in conjunction with another member of the NEA investing staff. In the past he has worked with Aeluros, Atheros Communications (NASDAQ: ATHR), Data Domain (NASDAQ: DDUP), E2O, Nanochip, Newisys, RingCube Technologies, Telegent Systems, and T-RAM Semiconductor, among others. Forest also previously held advisory positions with FineGround, PolyServe, ReShape and SMIC. Prior to NEA, Forest was senior vice president of R&D and chief technology officer of Silicon Graphics Inc. and, before that, founded and directed the Western Research Laboratory of Digital Equipment Corporation from 1982 to 1986. Previously, he was a professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering at Stanford University from 1971 to 1982. He also spent two years at Los Alamos National Laboratory building an operating system for the original Cray-1 computer, and a year and a half at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center as a principal scientist doing VLSI research. At Stanford, he worked with Andy Bechtolsheim on the SUN workstation project, with Jim Clark on the Geometry Engine project, and with John Hennessy on the MIPS microprocessor project. He received a BA in Mathematics from Rice University and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Texas at Austin, and is a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

Dr. Paul Mockapetris

Paul is the inventor of the Domain Name System (DNS), and is chief scientist and chairman of the board at Nominum, Inc. Paul created DNS in the 1980s at USC’s Information Sciences Institute, where he was later the director of ISI’s High Performance Computing and Communications Division. His mission is to help guide DNS and IP addressing to the next stage. Throughout his career, Paul has contributed to the computing research community and to the evolution of the Internet, and has been associated with the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) through its inception and continuing role as the focus of new applications and extensions to DNS. His earliest work at UC Irvine on distributed systems and LAN technology preceded the commercial Ethernet and Token Ring designs. After working at ISI on the design and initial implementation of the SMTP protocol for email as part of the birth of the Internet in 1983, Paul took on the challenge of designing DNS, and then operated the original “root servers” for all Internet names. He has chaired several IETF DNS and non-DNS working groups, and was Chair of the IETF from 1994 to 1996. Paul was program manager for networking at ARPA in the early 1990s, supervising efforts such as gigabit and optical networking. From 1995 on, Paul held leadership roles at several Silicon Valley networking startups, including @Home, Software.com (now OpenWave), Fiberlane (now Cisco), and Siara (now Redback Networks). Paul has dual B.S. degrees in Physics and Electrical Engineering from MIT, and a Ph.D. in Information and Computer Science from the University of California, Irvine.

Dr. Yoshio Nishi

Dr. Nishi is a professor of electrical engineering and director of the Stanford Site of National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network at Stanford University, where he is involved in the initiative for nanoscale materials and processes and for non-volatile memory technologies. Before joining the Stanford faculty in 2002, Dr. Nishi was the first Chief Scientist to be appointed at Texas Instruments. As a senior vice president there, Dr. Nishi directed research work for the Digital Signal Processing Solutions R&D Center, the Silicon Technology Development at Kilby Center, the Tsukuba R&D Center in Japan, and the Converter Product Development Center in New Jersey and Dallas. Prior to that, Dr. Nishi established and became director of Hewlett Packard’s new ULSI Research Laboratory, yand also served as director of the Silicon Process Laboratory and, later, the R&D Center for Integrated Circuits Business Division. Dr. Nishi started his professional career at Toshiba Corporation where he spent more than 20 years pioneering various semiconductor related research programs. His played a leadership role in developing innovations including the world’s first CMOS 1Mb dynamic, 256Kb CMOS static and 1Mb CMOS programmable memories. He has been credited as a technology leader who helped position Toshiba as one of the world’s a leading memory manufacturers. Dr. Nishi currently serves on a number of corporate boards of directors and advisory boards and committees for organizations including the Japan-America Society of Dallas/Fort Worth, Lawrence Livermore National Labs, SIA, , and industry associations including the SIA, SEMATECH and International SEMATECH, the Semiconductor Research Corporation, MARCO/DARPA’s Gigascale Silicon Research Center, the MARCO Interconnect Research Center, and NSF/SRC ERC for Environmentally Benign Semiconductor Manufacturing. Dr. Nishi holds a B.S. in metallurgy from Waseda University and a Ph.D. in electronics engineering from the University of Tokyo. Dr. Nishi has published approximately 75 papers in international technical journals and conferences and has co-authored nine books. He has been awarded more than 50 patents in the U.S. and Japan. He received IEEE Fellow Award (1987), 1995 IEEE Jack A. Morton Award for “Contributions to the basic understanding and innovative development of MOS device technology” and became the 2002 IEEE Robert Noyce Medal winner for “Strategic leadership in global semiconductor research and development”.

Dr. William Siegle

William T. (Bill) Siegle has played a leadership role in achieving numerous industry milestones while at companies including IBM and AMD. After receiving his BSEE, MSEE and Ph.D. from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, he joined IBM, the same year that the company announced its historic System 360. While there, Bill held a number of technical, management and executive roles including director of the Advanced Technology Center that created IBM’s premier ASTC technology development platform through the 1990s. In 1990 he was recruited to Advanced Micro Devices in Sunnyvale, California, as vice president and chief scientist, where he directed development of technology platforms for logic and flash memory products that enabled AMD to launch leading-edge production at new wafer fabs in Austin, Texas, Aizu-Wakamatsu, Japan, and Dresden, Germany. In 1998 he was promoted to senior vice president, and was responsible for AMD’s worldwide manufacturing operations in addition to his continuing role as chief scientist. Bill served as a member of the Board of Directors of SRC and as its chairman in 1993. He also has served on the Board of Directors of SEMATECH, and has been a director of public companies Etec, Inc. and DuPont Photomask, Inc. Bill retired in April 2005 and is currently a member of ASML’s supervisory board.