Leadership | TopQuadrant, Inc

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Irene Polikoff, Co-founder/CEO
Ralph Hodgson, Co-founder/Executive VP and Director of TopBraid Technologies
Robert Coyne, Co-founder/CMO and VP of Professional Services
Holger Knublauch, Principal Engineer

Irene Polikoff, Co-founder/CEO


Irene Polikoff has more than two decades of experience in software development, management, consulting and strategic planning. Since co-founding TopQuadrant in 2001 Irene has been involved in more than a dozen projects in government and commercial sectors. She has written strategy papers, trained customers on the use of the Semantic Web standards, developed ontology models, designed solution architectures and defined deployment processes and guidance.

With the introduction of TopQuadrant's Semantic Solution Platform, TopBraid Suite, Irene has been leading the evolution of the company from a consulting firm to a software vendor. As an executive leader of TopQuadrant Irene is responsible for daily operations and long term strategy of the company.

Before starting TopQuadrant Irene was a Principal in the national Knowledge, Content Management and Portals Practice in IBM Global Services. Prior to that she was a Senior Development Manager and a Project Executive for IBM worldwide consultant's tools and methods.

Prior to IBM, Ms. Polikoff held IT management positions at Fortune 500 companies where she was responsible for development and deployment of enterprise-wide mission critical information systems. Irene has a Masters degree in Operations Research from Columbia University. She is co-author of a recently published book on software requirements and architecture – “Capability Cases: Solution Envisioning Approach”.

email: irene (at) topquadrant.com blog

Ralph Hodgson, Co-founder/CTO


Ralph has over 25 years experience in the United States and internationally in enterprise systems design, consulting, software development and methodology development and deployment.

Before co-founding TopQuadrant he has held executive consulting positions at IBM Global Services where he was a founding member of Portal Practice and Object Technology Practice. Prior to IBM, he was European Technology Director, founder and Managing Director of Interactive Development Environments, which was an international CASE tools vendor. He started his career in the Research and Development Department of Hewlett Packard where he designed telecommunications test instrumentation.

As a technologist, he maintains an interest in software technologies for intelligent systems. He is a recognized thought leader in the object technology community. Ralph is a member of the “Intent Alliance”, an organization that was formed to promote the value of systems thinking for intelligent enterprises. He is a published author and a frequent speaker at international software engineering conferences. Between 1996 and 2000, he organized the OOPSLA workshops on “System Envisioning”.

email: rhodgson (at) topquadrant.com blog

Robert Coyne, Co-founder/CMO and VP of Prof. Svcs.


Dr. Coyne has over 25 years’ experience in system design and IT with complementary experience in business, consulting, academia and research. As CMO, Robert leads TopQuadrant’s marketing and public relations initiatives centered on its TopBraid business solutions and semantic solutions platform.  At TopQuadrant he has served in multiple roles from COO to account manager for key customers and consults with clients on knowledge-based solutions, the semantic web, semantic technology trainings and solution envisioning.

Prior to joining TopQuadrant as a founder, Robert was Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer of Solution Technology International, Inc. He co-designed a web-based ‘straight through processing’ platform for the insurance industry. Before that he was a Senior Consultant at Object Technology Practice (OTP) in IBM Global Services where he co-architected IBM's object-oriented methodology for client engagements, and served as a knowledge management /collaboration expert for the global OTP.

Dr. Coyne received a PhD (1991) in Computer-Aided Design while working as Research Faculty and Lecturer at Carnegie Mellon University.  He has authored over 30 technical papers, journal articles and book chapters, and is co-author of the book Capability Cases: A Solution Envisioning Approach.

email: robert (at) topquadrant.com blog

Chuck Juhasz, VP of Engineering

TQ_Chuck J Pic 2014Chuck is a proven Development Manager with over 15 years’ experience delivering mission critical systems across a variety of industries and technologies. At TopQuadrant, Chuck is responsible for managing the product development and support teams based in the Raleigh office. Before coming to head up TopQuadrant's development group, Chuck previously worked on Big Data Smart Grid products and large scale enterprise system integrations. Chuck has been involved in all aspects of the software product lifecycle. Chuck has integrated distributed systems utilizing a variety of technologies including Enterprise Services Buses, Web Services, various IP protocols, and file based EAI. Chuck has extensive experience managing product development and implementation for several multi-million dollar installations and Government agencies such as the DoD. He has managed SaaS integration and designed and implemented large scale multi-vendor installations

email: chuck (at) topquadrant.com blog

Holger Knublauch, Principal Engineer


Dr. Holger Knublauch is a well known innovator and software developer in the Semantic Web community. He joined TopQuadrant in late 2006 to develop the next generation of Semantic Web tools and middleware. Holger leads the development of TopBraid Suite. In this role he created TopBraid Composer, made significant contributions to TopBraid EVN and EDG, and created a stack of RDF-based languages including SPIN, SPARQLMotion and SWP.

Based on his experiences with these languages, Holger served as the lead editor of the Shapes Constraint Language (SHACL) in a World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) working group. SHACL became an official W3C Recommendation in 2017 and is heavily influenced by SPIN.

Prior to TopQuadrant Holger was a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Stanford Medical Informatics at the Stanford University where he was responsible for research and development of various components of the knowledge modeling tool Protégé including the original Protégé OWL plugin. During this time, Holger also actively contributed to the W3C’s Semantic Web Best Practices Working Group by developing guidance for building Semantic Web applications.

He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Ulm in Germany, 2002.

email: holger (at) topquadrant.com blog

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