I was born in Oklahoma to Taiwanese immigrant parents. I spent my childhood and adolescence in suburban Chicago, competing in speech tournaments and listening to rock radio stations. After high school, I attended Cornell University, graduating with a bachelor's in communication and minors in women's studies and social psychology. While at Cornell, I worked at WVBR-FM, a local radio station.
Between 1990-1996, I worked as a reporter and anchor at KQED-FM, an NPR station in San Francisco.
For KQED and National Public Radio, I've covered hundreds of stories, including visits from presidents, Silicon Valley, and weird stuff that happens in Berkeley. My favorite reporting included sound-rich stories on new media and pop culture (back then they were two different things). I've also done voiceover work and some television.
The Society of Professional Journalists awarded me its "Outstanding Young Journalist of the Year" honor in the mid-'90s.
It was my interest in new media and the excitement of the Internet revolution happening in Silicon Valley that drove me to a career in the Internet.
In 1996, I joined Channel A, a web start-up in Silicon Valley devoted to bringing the "modern Asian lifestyle" to a Western audience. We had a great idea and ran out of money.
In 1998, I joined Infoseek, the search engine. Life at Infoseek was exhilirating and exhausting.
Then in 1999, The Walt Disney Company acquired Infoseek and also Starwave, a Paul Allen startup in Seattle. Disney combined Infoseek and Starwave and re-branded infoseek to Go.com. Resignations, re-orgs, and retreats followed. Hilarity did not ensue.
Fast-forward to 2001 and I was promoted to Vice President of Entertainment at The Walt Disney Internet Group (WDIG). I managed teams at MrShowbiz.com, Movies.com, and WallofSound.com, which were sites owned and operated by WDIG out of the company's Seattle offices.
In 2001 I became Vice President of ABC.com in Burbank, California. So I left broadcast media for the Internet ... and ended up coming back to broadcast media!
I left ABC in 2006 to run Evite as its Senior Vice President & General Manager. Evite was owned by IAC, the same corporation that owns Ticketmaster, Match.com, Citysearch, and many other Internet properties. I enjoyed working on a service that millions of people (mostly women) love.
Near the end of 2007 I left Evite to return to Internet startups! I became the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Brighthouse, an incubator in Santa Monica. We spent 2008 attempting to raise venture capital financing. What timing! In 2009, I became the CEO of Lottay.com, a VC-backed startup in Ventura California. Lottay.com pivoted to an ecard that runs on PayPal (send someone a card + money, digitally!). In 2010, I became CEO & President of Taaz.com, a VC-backed startup in San Diego. Taaz technology is computer vision applications. Taaz powers virtual makeovers and hair styles on many web sites and in stores.
After Taaz, I took another EIR role, this time at fabled tech incubator Idealab in Pasadena.
Currently, I'm the Head of Business Development for IMDb.
When I'm not working, I enjoy watching movies (I love the ArcLight and still love DVDs and even Blu-ray), listening to music (MP3s but I still rock the CD!), and talking with our friends (in person, over food preferably). On the more physical side, I'm an avid bicyclist.
By far the most important part of my life is raising my young son. My wife and I strive to infuse his every moment with love, wonder, and happiness.
Our family lives in a century-old Craftsman house surrounded by trees in the Los Angeles area.