Meet the sovrn leadership team

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Walter Knapp

CEO

Walter is the CEO of sovrn. Most recently he was the Chief Operating Officer at Federated Media Publishing and Lijit Networks. With more than 20 years of business and operations management, Walter has been an investor as a Partner and Principal for two very successful venture capital funds. He has also built and led large field organizations for two public companies, Novell and Cambridge Technology partners. Walter regularly speaks about monetization and data strategies at industry events covering both online publishing and advertising. Walter holds a Master’s in Engineering from the University of Colorado in Boulder and a B.A. in History from Boston College.

Keith Bencher

EVP of Strategy and Development

Keith Bencher is the Executive Vice President of Strategy & Development at sovrn and is responsible for strategic partnerships, business development and corporate development. Most recently, Keith held the same position at Federated Media Publishing. Prior to joining the FM team, Keith held various positions at CBS Interactive (formerly CNET Networks) where he managed strategy, development and financial planning for its entertainment and lifestyle business unit, comprising leading brands such as GameSpot, TV.com, last.fm and Chow.com. Keith joined CNET Networks in 2000 through its acquisition of ZDNet. Prior to joining ZDNet, Keith was an Associate with Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette in its Technology Mergers & Acquisitions Group. He holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley.

Tony Cheung

SVP of Finance

Tony Cheung is the Senior Vice President of Finance for sovrn and oversees the financial operations for the company. Previously, Tony held the same role at Federated Media Publishing. Tony has over 20 years of experience in the accounting and finance field. Prior to Federated Media, he was a Worldwide Controller at Embarcadero Technologies, where he was part of the management team that led the company through a transition from public to private and successfully completed another $20 million company acquisition. Prior to that, he held various senior accounting roles at Fox Interactive Media, IGN Entertainment, UTStarcom and Logic Vision. He holds a MBA from Golden Gate University.

Keith Fagan

SVP & GM of Data Solutions

Keith Fagan is the Senior Vice President and General Manager of Data Solutions at sovrn where he is responsible for defining and creating custom and proprietary branded audience and content data segments. Prior to sovrn, Keith held the same role at Federated Media Publishing. Keith is a 20-year veteran in multi-channel marketing specializing in business development, sales and sales management, strategic planning and budgeting, customer acquisition and retention, and market analysis. Prior to Federated Media, Keith was Head of New Initiatives at Datalogix, Inc. Before that he spent almost 15 years in various sales, marketing and client services roles at Epsilon Targeting, a division of Alliance Data, and Abacus, a division of DoubleClick Inc. that was acquired by Alliance Data in 2008.

Jeff Barry

VP of Operations

Jeff Barry is the Vice President of Operations at sovrn. In this role, Jeff is responsible for supporting the company’s suite of service offerings, which include demand partner integrations, management and optimization as well as publishers tools such as the search and analytics widgets. He is also responsible for supporting sovrn's growing sales department and rapidly growing publisher base. Prior to sovrn, Jeff held the same position at Federated Media Publishing and prior to that he was the Director of Operations at Lijit Networks. Jeff is a seasoned operations veteran who has held multiple operational roles spanning multiple tech companies. Jeff holds a B.S. in Biology from Oregon State University.

Scott Butler

VP of Technical Operations

Scott is the Vice President of Technical Operations at sovrn. In this role he oversees the company’s IT operations including infrastructure for all data centers, platform release management and office IT. Prior to sovrn, Scott held the same role at Federated Media Publishing and at Lijit Networks. Scott has over 25 years experience in the IT industry. Prior to FMP / Lijit, Scott was responsible for engineering, implementing and managing network infrastructure for Corporate Express during their growth from $750M to over $4B in revenue, including an e-commerce platform supporting over $1M per day. During his tenure at Infocrossing he was responsible for managing network infrastructure at multiple data centers supporting 150+ hosted customers and architecting systems, network and storage solutions for prospective customers.

Sonya Caprio

VP of Marketing and Communications

Sonya Caprio is the Vice President of Marketing and Communications at sovrn. She is responsible for all corporate marketing and communications activities, including public relations, messaging and branding, internal and external communications, and events. With almost 20 years of experience in corporate and agency environments, Sonya's strengths lie in program development and management, public relations, messaging, branding, and lead generation. Most recently, she was VP of Marketing and Corporate Communications at Federated Media Publishing, and Senior Director of Marketing at Lijit Networks, which was acquired by Federated Media in October 2011. Sonya holds a B.A. in political science from Northwestern University.

Bill Marcum

VP of Software Engineering

Bill Marcum is the Vice President of Software Engineering at sovrn. Prior to sovrn, Bill held the same role at Federated Media and at Lijit Networks where he was one of the first employees. Bill has led software teams at companies such as HiveLive, Raindance, Radish Communications, and National BioSystems. He has 20 years of experience developing and architecting scalable and reliable software systems. Bill received his B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Florida.

Rufus McLain

VP of Publisher Services

Rufus McLain is the Vice President of Publisher Services at sovrn where he is responsible for publisher management across the company. He and his team drive publisher recruitment, growth, education, and marketing. Prior to sovrn, Rufus’ roles included VP of Publisher Services at Federated Media, VP of Marketing for BigTent Groups (acquired by FMP in 2010) and marketing lead for Yahoo! Groups. Rufus brings more than 13 years of business and marketing experience. He has an MBA from the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business and B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Washington.

Maja Millicevic

VP of Demand Partnerships

Maja is the Vice President of Demand Partnerships at sovrn. She is responsible for global revenue and demand partnerships across the company’s exchange and specializes in data, cross-platform, programmatic and real time digital advertising. Maja joined sovrn from AppNexus where she was in charge of sales strategy & execution of a new segment focusing on premium digital publishers, portals and large supply networks. Maja was an early employee and key member of the enterprise sales team at data management platform Demdex. Following the company's successful acquisition by Adobe Systems (ADBE), she expanded data management sales operations to the existing Adobe/Omniture customer base. Maja is a graduate of Boston College and is based in New York City.

Claire Virtue

VP of Human Resources

Claire is the Vice President of Human Resources at sovrn. Prior to sovrn, Claire held the same position at Federated Media Publishing and prior to that she has served as a strategic partner and consultant for hundreds of small to mid-sized businesses. In those roles, Claire was provided the opportunity to develop broad experience in developing HR solutions while working with some of the most innovative companies of the time. Originally a native of the Cayman Islands, Claire has called the Bay Area home for the last seven years.