Meet the Team

A mix of engineers, designers, and product managers with backgrounds that span enterprise, cloud tech, and the creative arts.

Kyle Roche

Founder and CEO

Kyle is co-founder and CEO at Griptape. Previously GM at AWS. Previously-er was founder and CEO at 2lemetry, which was acquired by Amazon in 2015. Father of 6. Spends free time volunteering on the streets of North Seattle with Operation Nightwatch. Serves on the Board of Stolen Youth.

Vasily Vasinov

Founder and CTO

Vasily is co-founder and CTO at Griptape. Previously, he worked at AWS as an engineer and product manager, focusing on IoT and data analytics. Vasily has also founded successful startups in the HPC and data engineering domains. In his spare time, he enjoys running marathons, practicing the guitar, and spending time with his wife and son.

Jason Schleifer

Chief Creative Officer

Schleifer has been a veteran in the animation and tech industry for almost 30 years, working on films like The Lord of the Rings, Madagascar, Megamind, and a bunch more. He co-founded Nimble Collective which was acquired by AWS in 2019. He has empathetic eyebrows, loves coffee, and lives in New Zealand, where he wears gumboots and chops wood.

Derek Pai

Chief Product Officer

Derek can't stop thinking about cars, camping with his dog, metaphors, and the potential of novel ideas to change how people experience the world. He's managed to make a career out of some of those.

James Clarendon

Sr. Software Engineer

James has spent the last decade at AWS launching distributed cloud services. Prior to that, he designed games in the Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Deus Ex, and Thief franchises. He’s excited to see how he can bring those disparate experiences to Griptape! In his spare time, he is active in the Video Game Preservation community, and hosts the Floating Tomb, Seattle's longest-running all-vinyl DJ night.

Emily Danielson

Sr. Software Engineer

Dubbed the "robot lady", Emily is a software engineer with a passion for all things autonomous. When she’s not squashing the AI uprising, she likes to read, write, and spend time outside with her dogs.

Zach Giordano

Software Development Engineer

Zach is a software engineer with experience focusing on designing, implementing, and maintaining cloud-based services. He spent 4+ years working at AWS on various service teams before joining Griptape. Outside of software engineering, Zach spends time recording/producing music and playing live as a gigging guitarist.

Collin Dutter

Software Development Engineer

Collin is based in San Francisco. He has spent most of his career working with AWS, and is excited to apply his expertise to AI! In his free time he enjoys exercising, and nerding out on video games, movies, and text editors.

Matthew Vallillo

Software Development Engineer

Matt is a software engineer who excels in developing cloud-native applications. Over 4 years of experience have equipped him with the skills to build enterprise systems, most recently at Microsoft. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking with his dog, Bella, jamming on the drums, or going to concerts.

Amaru Zeas

Creative Director

Originally from Ecuador, Amaru is a multi-award-winning filmmaker with more than 18 years of experience. Formerly with AWS and Microsoft, his expertise spans across the evolving landscape of digital media, including Virtual Production, VFX, Games, VR, XR, Animation, and Arch Viz.

Andrew French

Software Development Engineer

Andrew is a software developer with extensive experience in a variety of fields, including open-source tools, fintech systems, and medical devices. Outside of work, he enjoys cooking, traveling, and spending time on side projects.

CJ Kindel

Software Development Engineer

CJ, a Washington native, currently lives in Leavenworth, WA. He joined Griptape after a 5+ year stint at AWS. When he is not developing for Griptape on a vintage mechanical keyboard you can find him skiing and hiking in the mountains.

Aodhan Roche

Junior Software Development Engineer

Aodhan is a dedicated Griptape employee and a former college wrestler, currently based in Seattle WA. He and his wife are excitedly expecting their first baby! Aodhan enjoys following the premier league and playing golf.

Avery Roche

Developer Evangelist

Avery currently resides in Kirkland WA. She has previous experience as a social media manager in sales and is a published author. In her free time she loves to read, play the piano, collect records, travel, and spend quality time with her family.

Dylan Holmes

Senior Software Engineer

Dylan is a software engineer with a variety of experience up and down the software stack, from deploying ML models at cloud scale to integrating hardware with robotic simulations. He likes short walks in the woods.

Kirk Crenshaw

Head of Growth

Kirk brings over twenty-five years of expertise as an executive, entrepreneur, and startup advisor. His leadership roles include spearheading marketing efforts at high-tech firms like DemandBase, Appirio (acquired by Wipro), and 2lemetry (acquired by Amazon). Passionate about music, Kirk regularly hosts backyard concerts to support charities like Sofaburn Inc and Letters to Santa. He also shares his love for soccer as a proud owner of The Town FC, an MLS Pro Next Team.

Ryan Conti

Business Development

Ryan has 10+ years of experience leading fast growing start-ups. He led Sales and Operations as COO of Shelf Engine, a Seattle based startup on a mission to reduce food waste. Before that he helped scale the sales org at Fundera (acquired by NerdWallet), a NY based fintech company.