Our Team

Camus Energy was founded in 2019 in the San Francisco Bay area. We have deep experience designing and operating distributed systems, and a passion for combating climate change. From pioneering work at Google, SpaceX, and Uber, we bring expertise in massively parallel cloud computing, high-scale real-time analytics, and high-reliability computing. We believe that we can combine our desire to impact the world with our technical expertise to bring about positive change. And we are going to have fun doing so – Our mascot is the capybara, and our official utensil is the spork.

Leadership Team

Astrid Atkinson

CEO

Astrid is an experienced exec with a track record of leading multidisciplinary teams to solve the hardest problems. In 14.5 years at Google, she led engineering and operations teams in pioneering work on building distributed software systems at unprecedented scale, including leading the team which built Google’s global webserving layer, and building development frameworks to help all teams at Google operate reliably at global scale.

Astrid is also a car enthusiast, who likes building and racing junk cars. She has a stable of gently rusting Iacocca-era Chryslers, which experience somewhat less than five-nines of reliability.

Cody Smith

CTO

Cody is a builder, fixer, and leader specializing in large computing applications, particularly in areas of reliability, efficiency, and monitoring. He is a veteran of Google’s first Site Reliability Engineering team, doing everything from infrastructure software development, to pager duty, to system architecture, to strategy, to organizational leadership. His favorite project ever was Google’s network load balancer, Maglev, and most exciting was the rescue of HealthCare.gov.

As a borderline zealot for fitness and enthusiastic patron of the arts, his idea of a great day is setting a personal record on the Black Rock City 50k. And being able to walk afterwards.

Michael Ryan

COO

Michael is a hands-on executive, team builder, business operator and global program leader specializing in delivering complex , high value B2B data management solutions. He’s built and operated large scale data integrations and commerce platforms for NetApp, BD Bioscience, Wellpoint and GE Power — managing billions of dollars of leads, orders, logistics and manufacturing, working with large, global and cross-organizational teams.

Michael’s personal mission is to create a life of adventure and joy for himself, his family and his friends. Not quite as active as Cody, his idea for a great day is hiking in the Peninsula Open Space, or a long bike ride, and then heading out to live music or theater.

Ted James

VP Strategy

Ted is an experienced leader of multidisciplinary teams in energy with expertise in clean energy technologies and utility approaches to manage distributed resources. Previously, he served as a Principal at PG&E in roles focusing on customer energy solutions and utility business strategies. He also served 6 years at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), including as a Senior Analyst and Team Lead in the lab’s Strategic Energy Analysis Center.

An avid outdoorsman and skier, Ted can often be found exploring wildness areas, national parks, and other alpine environments with friends and family.

Team Members

Armando Atienza

Armando Atienza is an engineer at Camus who has expertise and experience through the entire engineering stack from hardware to large scale computational systems.  At Google he wrote the enterprise infrastructure monitoring platform and worked in the self-driving cars program. He built systems monitoring for SpaceX and then oversaw infrastructure and security for member companies at Playground. He served as an engineer on HealthCare.gov as part of the “Tech Surge” rescue crew.  He received his BS in Electrical Engineering from The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art.

James Duncan

James Duncan is an engineer at Camus with strong background in designing massive-scale distributed systems and building highly reliable infrastructure. He served recently as Google engineer as an expert in structured data representations of real-world entities, payments and  risk engineering. He was an author of Google’s Knowledge Graph and engineered other large-scale systems for data analytics and logging infrastructure. He received a BA in Mathematics and Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley.

Milton Venetos

Milton Venetos is a product management consultant at Camus.   He is a skilled engineer specializing in the creation and use of analytical modeling software packages — particularly within the energy industry. He has 20-plus years experience launching, building and selling new hardware and software products and companies including GateCycle, acquired by GE Energy, and Linear Fresnel Solar at Ausra.  He is a certified Six Sigma Greenbelt. He received a BSME, Mechanical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and an MSME, Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.

Scott Backhaus

Scott Backhaus is currently serving as an independent consultant to Camus Energy. He recently served as the Coordinator for Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) and Geomagnetic Disturbance (GMD) impacts on critical infrastructure systems for the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. He previously served in multiple roles in his 20-plus years at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), including Program Manager for the Office of Electricity, Program Manager for DHS Critical Infrastructure, principal investigator for several LANL projects funded by the Office of Electricity, and team lead for LANL’s component of the DHS National Infrastructure Simulation and Analysis Group.  He received his Ph.D. in Physics in 1997 from the University of California at Berkeley in the area of macroscopic quantum behavior of superfluid 3He and 4He.

Mathilde Badoual

Mathilde Badoual is a third year PhD student at UC Berkeley with Professor Scott Moura in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Working at the Energy Control and Application Lab (eCAL) and focusing her work on optimization and control for integrating renewable energies on electricity market. In addition to the PhD program she is working at Camus Energy on grid state estimation for Kit Carson Electric Cooperative. She studied electrical engineering and power systems in undergrad at Ecole CentraleSupelec in Paris, France and completed a Master in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Systems at UC Berkeley with a strong focus in optimization. After her masters she worked as an intern at Tesla in the Optimization and Market team, doing optimization for the 129 MWh Hornsdale (Australia) Tesla battery’s bidding strategy on the AEMO market. Her background includes power system, optimization, control (linear and nonlinear).

Will Salisbury

Will is a software engineer with a background in electrical and computer engineering. Prior to Camus, he was a founding member of Uber’s Maps team where he worked on geospatial datastores, search systems, and recommendation engines. He has also worked professionally as a security engineer, deploying multi-cloud service meshes and public-key infrastructure. Will holds a BS in Computer Engineering from Tufts University.

Doug Cutting

Advisor

Doug is an open-source software developer. He launched several successful projects at the Apache Software Foundation (ASF), including Lucene, Hadoop and Avro. He is currently Chief Architect at Cloudera and in the past has served on the board of the ASF and worked at Yahoo!, Excite, Apple and Xerox PARC. Doug has a degree in Linguistics from Stanford University. Doug likes hiking, backpacking and especially mountain biking. He volunteers locally to create new trails and coach the youth mountain bike team. His wife and three sons share these passions and can often be found together enjoying the outdoors.

Help us build the future of energy.

We’re a smart, scrappy and driven team that’s looking to build the software that matters in the real world. If you’re looking to shape the nature of the grid, then get in touch!
  • Are you a software engineer with 3+ years of experience and background in distributed systems, energy systems, data engineering, or frontend & UI? We’re hiring!
  • Interested in joining our open source efforts?
  • Just want to learn more?




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