SiteWit was founded in 2010 by Ricardo Lasa and Dr. Donald Berndt with the mission of finding a way to objectively measure the quality of internet traffic. Ricardo was at the time Chief Executive Officer of Web Piston Website Builder and Don was sitting on Web Piston’s advisory board.
After an advisory board meeting Ricardo and Don started talking about ways to improve Web Piston’s paid search campaigns. Don’s background in data mining and Ricardo’s domain knowledge were a perfect match to explore how data mining could be used to purchase only the best available traffic. That meeting was the spark that got SiteWit started.
Since then, the founders have put together a team of the best and brightest software engineers, data mining experts, and business people to put together a next generation PPC bid management and behavioral analytics suite.
The result is SiteWit. The core of the team has been working together for over 10 years and we greatly enjoy working with each other, as crazy as that might seem!
Ricardo Lasa – Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer
Ricardo is a hard working serial entrepreneur that is highly involved in the technology and business community in Tampa Bay. Prior to co-founding SiteWit, Ricardo started Web Piston Website Builder, now one of the leading platforms for small businesses to build their website and market their products and services. Through running Web Piston Ricardo realized there had to be a better way to buy paid search and started to work on SiteWit with Don in 2006. Web Piston is a thriving company built on sound business principles, profitable and growing even in these dire times of the “Great Recession.” Ricardo is focusing all his efforts now in growing SiteWit and helping Search Engine Marketing firms provide better online marketing for their clients through a simple and cost efficient mechanism.
Ricardo holds a bachelors degree in Management information systems, a Master of Business Administration with emphasis in Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and International Management, and a Master of Science in Management Information Systems with emphasis on Database Architecture and User Interface Design, all from the University of South Florida Business School. Ricardo also attended the Harvard Business School Launching New Ventures program in 2009 and is looking forward to joining the HBS Owner/President Management program in 2010. Ricardo sits on the board of directors of the Tampa Bay Technology Forum, the advisory board of the Management Information Systems from the University of South Florida Business School, and the board of directors of Filasa, a real estate development firm headquartered in Madrid, Spain.
Don Berndt ph.D – Co-Founder, Chief Scientist
Don is a professor in the College of Business at the University of South Florida. His research interests are centered on business intelligence technologies such as data warehousing, data mining, and text mining. A particular emphasis of his work is the application of these technologies in healthcare, including data and text mining for electronic medical records. More recent work has focused on information markets as another mechanism for prediction and collective intelligence (working together with Ricardo on Agorx). He has published more than 75 research papers on these topics and worked with a number of entrepreneurial technology firms, as well as other organizations throughout his career.
His first exposure to entrepreneurism was a position as a LISP programmer at Cognitive Systems, an artificial intelligence start-up associated with Yale University. That was followed by work in scientific computing and healthcare analytics at other companies. Working with Ricardo on SiteWit has provided an opportunity to apply data warehousing and data mining technologies to website traffic analysis and the development of learning algorithms for managing paid search. Don received his Ph.D. in Management Information Systems from the Stern School of Business at New York University and M.S. in Computer Science from Stony Brook University.
Bridget Shea – Chief Revenue Officer
Bridget began her career when the Internet was at its nascence and remains a proud survivor of the early .com boom. She has dedicated her work to advancing online initiatives for top tier brands by leveraging disruptive technology solutions.
Most recently, Bridget was an early employee at Kenshoo serving as VP of Global Client Services where she was responsible for account management and professional services teams across the globe. Her team provided strategic consulting to clients, helping them employ Kenshoo to deliver scalable performance lifts while generating operational efficiencies. Bridget worked with blue-chip advertisers such as Facebook, Groupon, Zappos, Expedia, Sears, Target, eBay and Kayak.
Prior to joining Kenshoo, Bridget was VP of Search Operations for SendTec, where she managed the SEO and SEM divisions, overseeing brands such as Intuit, CDW, Bed Bath & Beyond, AAA and Lancôme. Shea also held leadership roles as a founding member of the media team at i-Frontier (now Razorfish).
Bridget is a frequent speaker at industry events including Search Insider Summit, eTail and SMX. She is a graduate of Haverford College and holds a Masters Degree from New York University.
Jesse Baynard – Lead User Experience
Jesse holds a Masters degree in Information Systems from the University of South Florida. Since graduating in 2000, Jesse’s primary focus has been in turning complex business problems into simple and effective technology solutions. These solutions have spanned across numerous vertical markets including healthcare, back office management, and e-commerce. Now as a member of the SiteWit management team, Jesse is dedicated to bringing clarity and expertise to the problem of search engine marketing inefficiencies. Intrigued by the power of mining behavioral analytics in predicting behavior, Jesse believes that this technology is the best automated approach for a problem that is far too complicated for click-through or simple ROI ratios alone. In his spare time he is involved in the Tampa Bay area tech community, an avid photographer and parent of two children.
Matt Munday – Lead Software Developer
Matt is SiteWit’s lead developer with many years of experience in designing, building and implementing web and backend applications for e-commerce and web development that have been tremendous business successes. Matt is an avid programmer who spends a lot of his free time creating applications for Google’s Android Os, designing and creating templates and plugins for WordPress and a template for Zenphoto, and working with open source projects such as Snark. Matt has deep level expertise in Java, C++, C#, VB.NET, PHP & TSQL.
Chris Lord – Lead Software Developer
Chris is a detail oriented software developer with extensive experience in e-commerce development. Before working on Site Wit Chris developed a major shopping cart platform used by thousands of business owners in several countries. He developed the billing, customer management, and customer communication systems for Web Piston Website Builder and many customized e-commerce solutions for businesses in vastly different markets. Chris also oversees the network and hosting infrastructure of SiteWit and its cloud implementation. He has received certifications from both CIW and Microsoft.
Satrajit Basu – Data Mining Engineer
Satrajit Basu joined the team at SiteWit as a software developer in August 2012. He received his Masters degree in Computer Science from the University of South Florida. He works on Sitewit’s PPC, SEO and Predictive Analytics engine. He is also assigned the task of researching new technologies and applications of machine learning for Predictive Analytics. His expertise include programming in Java, C++, VB.NET, TSQL and in the area of machine learning. During his time as a graduate student at University of South Florida, Satrajit worked in the area of data mining and machine learning. He worked on collaborative projects with H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, in developing predictive models for lung tumor analysis and has multiple publications in the field.
Evan Bushelman – Lead Customer Advocate
Evan is responsible for building and managing relationships with our customer base. We first met Evan during the summer of ’09 when he interned for Web Piston. He instantly left his mark, which is why he was invited to join the SiteWit team once he graduated. Evan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of South Florida. He is a Google AdWords Certified Partner and available to answer all of your search marketing inquiries.
Andy Montoya – Customer Advocate
Andy is a graduate from the University of South Florida having acquired a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing. He was an active member of the American Marketing Association USF Chapter where he learned the essentials of building strong business relationships. Andy has worked in the customer service field for over many years and understands the value of effective communication. He listens with an empathetic ear and makes sure that all customer concerns are dealt with quickly and efficiently. Since working at SiteWit, Andy has been a problem-solver for customers and has helped in the implementation of various marketing initiatives.