Our Judges

Intel-Cornell Cup Judges

John Belina, Cornell
John Belina, CornellJohn Belina received the B.S. and Master of Engineering degrees in Electrical Engineering at Cornell University in 1974 and 1975. In 1980 he began a 30-year teaching and design projects career at Cornell.

John worked on problems of designing optimal chemotherapy schedules for leukemia and designing the instrumentation needed to obtain patient-specific model parameters and sponsored student projects on design of analog instrumentation to monitor the individual cell growth characteristics; another student design team worked on three-phase induction motor vector control power inverters for electric vehicles. He taught the principles of Systems Engineering applied to product design of home security and home entertainment products as well as to biomedical instrument design particularly to detect and categorize arrhythmias of the human heart and to remotely monitor patients with chronic heart problems from the convenience of their own home using the powerful computational abilities of smart phones and PDA devices. The biomedical topics provided more than 20 years of innovative student project work.

John has also taught Analog Circuit Design and Basic Semiconductor Electronics, Systems Theory, Design of Power Electronic circuits, Biomedical Signal Analysis, Biomedical Instrumentation, Computerized Instrumentation Design, and Applications of Systems Engineering to Product Development.

John retired from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2009, but continues teaching Career Development for Engineers with our Career Services specialists and assists in project supervision activities in the area of Smart Grid Electric Distribution applications. In the summer of 2014, John taught a Cornell Summer course to nearly 100 students from across the globe who just finished their junior year of high school - introducing them to engineering disciplines and especially using systems engineering concepts to evaluate new product concepts.


Melissa Giramma, Maxon Motors
Melissa Giramma - Maxon MotorsMelissa Giramma is a sales engineer overseeing the University Initiative Program at maxon precision motors, inc. In this role, Melissa provides technical assistance and pricing for all university professors, staff, and students. In addition to her sales responsibilities, Melissa is a quality systems associate, working within Maxon’s ISO 9001 QMS continuous improvement role. She earned her degree in Mechanical Engineering from CCRI and is a certified lean leader currently working towards her green belt in Lean Six Sigma Methodologies.


Sandeep Hiremath, Mathworks
Sandeep HiremathSandeep Hiremath is a Technical Evangelist for the Education sector at MathWorks since 2010. In this current role, he provides technical guidance and support to teams that participate in MathWorks sponsored student competitions through technical presentations, online training sessions, and hands-on workshops. In the same role, Sandeep was previously focusing on supporting curriculum development projects involving integration of MathWorks products at universities in the south central and mid-west U.S. regions, such as Rice University, University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M, Duke, North Carolina State, Ohio State, and Vanderbilt. Prior to this role, he was an Application Support Engineer at MathWorks for 3.5 yrs, helping customers who primarily were building applications using Simulink, Stateflow and Production Code Generation tools. He received a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering at Clemson University, and a Bachelor of Engineering in Electrical and Electronics at Madras University, India.


Brian McKay, Mathworks
Brian McKay, MathWorksBrian McKay is a member of the Product Marketing team at MathWorks focused on Simulink connectivity with low-cost hardware such as Arduino, LEGO MINDSTORMS robots, and Raspberry Pi. Brian holds a B.S and M. S. in general engineering with specialization in controls systems from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has been at MathWorks for nine years, working with various real-time simulation and testing solutions. Prior to joining MathWorks, Brian spent 12 years in the automotive industry working on projects implementing electronic controls on diverse vehicles including off-road construction vehicles, open-wheel racecars, and hydrogen fuel cell prototypes.


Asmae Mhassni, Intel
Asmae Mhassni - IntelAsmae is a senior systems engineer at Intel responsible for leading the technical definition, development, and integration of Next-Generation Supercomputers within the Data Center engineering group. Before joining the high performance computing area, she led systems engineering efforts to advance the PC user experience within the personal computing group at Intel. Asmae has a wealth of diverse experiences and held various roles in the medical device and automotive industries in all phases of the product life cycle prior to joining Intel. She is a passionate mentor and enjoys coaching others inside and outside of Intel about implementing Systems Engineering practices in fast-paced development environments. Asmae has experience developing Systems Engineering trainings and curriculums and helped kick-start the Intel-Cornell Cup competition while attending Cornell. She received her Master's degree in Systems Engineering from Cornell University, a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Florida, and holds one patent.


Jeff Mucha, Tektronix
Jeff Mucha, TektronixJeff Mucha is a senior hardware design engineer working on performance oscilloscopes. Tektronix is a world leader in test, measurement, and monitoring technology.

Jeff received his undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from Oregon State University. In his 14 years at Tektronix, Jeff has contributed as a hardware design engineer and project lead. He has been awarded the Tektronix President’s Award and two patents.

In his free time Jeff enjoys being the father of two boys, playing guitar and taking on ambitious DIY home improvement projects.


Bikas Narain, Intel
Bikas Narain, IntelBikas Narain is the Director of Engineering at Intel Corporation, Internet of Things Group (IOTG). Bikas leads world-wide Platform and Software Validation engineering organization for IOTG. He joined Intel in 1991 and has led Silicon Development and Design engineering teams for Intel Architecture (IA) Microprocessors and IA System on Chips (SoC) that include i960TM processor, PentiumTM processor, ItaniumTM processor, AtomTM SoC and several generations of Embedded SoCs. Bikas has Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from University of California, Irvine.


Jeni Panhorst, Intel
Jeni Panhorst - IntelJeni Panhorst is the Technical Assistant and Chief of Staff for the Vice President and General Manager of the Network Platform Group at Intel. She previously served as Director of Marketing for Communications Platforms & Technologies, responsible for roadmap definition and marketing of networking IP and products. Jeni has served communications and embedded markets for 15 years, formerly as Platform Solutions Architect focused on media processing, manager of a cross-geography Platform Applications Engineering organization, Platform Applications Engineer, and Software Engineer. Jeni has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from Case Western Reserve University. She represents Intel on the leadership of the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing and on the boards of two educational nonprofits. She lives in Arizona with her husband and two daughters.


Breck Parkinson, Intel
Breck Parkinson, IntelBreck is a Solutions Marketing Manager for the Software Defined Networking Division, Intel Corporation, and is responsible to promote Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV) optimization on Intel Architecture by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and deployments at Enterprise IT and Cloud and Telecommunications Service Providers. Prior to this Breck was the Segment Marketing Manager for Enterprise Tablets for Intel’s Mobile and Communications Group. Breck has over 18 years of experience at Intel in various finance, operations and marketing roles and is a graduate of Idaho State University with a bachelor's of accounting degree.


Joe Skovira, Cornell
Joe Skovira, CornellJoseph (Joe) Skovira began his career at IBM, ultimately working with the IBM deep computing group, interested in the architecture and software of large parallel machines. Working for IBM at Cornell University, he was part of a select team devoted to moving on-campus research to high performance parallel computers.

With a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame, a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Syracuse University, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University, Joe was familiar with researchers at the Cornell campus and the variety of science and technology that could be moved to the latest computing platforms. He collaborated with a variety of departments at Cornell including Electrical and Computer Engineering, Neurobiology and Behavior, and Fracture Mechanics, to name a few. Along with his Cornell colleagues, Joe demonstrated the latest research work on these machines at the IBM exhibit during multiple Supercomputing conferences. Joe also traveled to national and international computing centers to assist in pre- and post-sales system configuration, deployment, and tuning (including job management, network and parallel file system efforts) for a wide range of customers interested in high performance systems.

After IBM, Joe began a consulting career leading to research in parallel, 3D image reconstruction for high throughput baggage handling at Surescan Corporation, and hardware acceleration (including GPUs and FPGAs) for high performance computing at i3 Electronics. Joe has recently returned to Cornell University, working on the arXiv.org project, an on-line system for pre-print scientific research. Joe currently holds 20 U.S patents, with several more in progress.

Always interested in sharing a passion for science and technology, Joe meets with K-12 audiences, and the community at large, presenting current advances in robotic space exploration as part of the JPL Solar System Ambassador program. In his spare time, Joe enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.


Jeff Torello, Intel
Jeff Torello - IntelJeff Torello is currently an IoT Technical Evangelist and Linux Architect for the IoTG Application Ready Platforms division with Intel Corporation. Jeff has an extensive background in information technology, systems design, systems engineering, and architecture. Jeff has held various roles in his 20-year career with Intel, including maintaining the intel.com website, implementing a disaster recovery program for the Intel e-commerce programs, software architecture, software engineering, design engineering, and most recently, the Intel IoT Gateway platform architecture and operating system design.

Jeff is primarily a self-taught technologist and holds a bachelor’s degree in business information systems. Jeff has a passion for learning, is an avid reader and enjoys Formula 1 auto racing in his free time.


Media Award Judges

Chris Dawson
Brand Manager and Web Content Writer, Cornell Engineering

Chris Dawson, Cornell EngineeringChris Dawson is a writer for Cornell Engineering’s magazine, department newsletters, and websites. He has created much of the text in support of Cornell Engineering’s successful multi-year “Break the Rules” rebranding effort. Before coming to Cornell, Chris enjoyed a long career as a high school and middle school classroom teacher. He earned BAs in English Literature and Political Science from Bucknell University, where he was also Editor of the student newspaper. He has a Masters in Education from Montana State University—Billings. He has kept a blog since 2007, where he writes about teaching, parenting, running, gardening, and living.


Jason Gilbert
Senior Editor, Yahoo! Tech

Jason Gilbert, Yahoo! NewsJason Gilbert is the Senior Editor of Yahoo Tech, a new technology site from Yahoo, as well as a weekly columnist at Quartz, a new business site for The Atlantic. Before that, he was a news reporter at the Huffington Post. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, Slate, McSweeney's, and other fine publications. He graduated from Princeton with a B.A. in English and concentration in Creative Writing in 2009.