Our Management Team
Andrew J. Prell, CEO
Convergence was born from Andrew bringing together the two decades of software and hardware pioneering design and development in each aspect of this cross-screen / cross reality project. From some of the first VR arcade equipment in 1990 to ground breaking global virtual startup tournaments, Andrew is always creating the technology curve. Andrew Prell is the owner and co-inventor with Igor Livitz on issued US Patents 6,941,344 and 7,237,006 Method for Managing the Simultaneous Utilization of Diverse Real-Time Collaborative Software Applications and is co-inventor with Jonathan Cowan, Ph.D. on issued US patent 5,983,129 Method for determining an individual’s intensity of focused attention and integrating same into computer program (Brainwave Joystick patent).
Igor Livitz, Technology Director
Igor was an original member of Mr. Prell’s Virtual Reality Dream Team in 1995 at VTI helping to create some of the foundation for what Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality has become today. Nolan Bushnell was so impressed with this team; he tried to acquire the VTI team in 1996 for his Playnet project. Igor has created foundational Internet technology patents with Andrew Prell. Igor is goal-oriented, results-focused hands-on development leader who is used to wearing many hats. He is fast-learning, creative technologist who enjoys passing his knowledge along to others and has broad-based expertise including a full software development cycle. Igor has participated in projects developed “in-house” and outsourced offshore with a track record including software systems developed for a range of companies, from small / medium to Fortune 500.
Frank Ballouz, SVP Marketing
Frank was Atari’s 1st National Sales & Marketing Manager, executive at Nintendo, Capcom and Namco. He has consulted for fortune 500 companies such as Intel and Microsoft. Frank was the former president of the AAMA and is well known and loved across all aspects of the gaming world, from consumer to arcade to LBE and Theme Park Attractions.
Tom Roe (aka, T. A. Roe), Creative Director
Tom was an original member of Mr. Prell’s Virtual Reality Dream Team in 1990 at AWT helping to create some of the foundation for what Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality has become today. Tom went on to become a prominent 3D Graphic developer, Videographer and Sci-Fi Author. Tom brings the creative development core of the Convergence’s first title Silica: Nexus.
Paul Baker, SVP Project Director and Producer
Paul is a premier AAA Game leader. He will be leading Convergence’s internal Project Managers that manage the external Indie Development Teams. Paul has worked on many blockbuster hits such as: Assassins Creed 3, Pixar’s Up, Star Wars Battlefront I, Star Wars Battlefront II, Mercenaries I, Jurassic Park 3, Star Trek Away Team, Soldier of Fortune I, Battlezone II, Dark Reign II, Civilization Call to Power, Heavy Gear II, Heretic II, Return to Zork, Quake III along with many others. He has worked the game industry since ’92. He has held the positions of Creative Director, Lead Designer, Lead Level Designer, System Designer, Level Designer, Audio Director and Designer, Tester, Lead Tester, Associate Producer, and Technology and Production Coordinator. He has worked with both large and small teams.
Ron Meiners, Community Director
Ron Meiners has worked in a wide range of online community applications, from casual games to virtual worlds, from The Sims and Uru Live to a volunteer position as the Online Community Advocate for the Burning Man organization. He is passionate about the potential for online communities to foster relationships between participants and to open the range of experiences to collaborative creativity, transformative experiences, and the evolution of social organization. He is committed to the exploration of new forms of interaction and collaboration online. Other projects include There.com (speech enabled virtual social world), Multiverse.net (platform for independent MMOG creation), and Dogster.com (community of passion for pet owners). EA-Sims, Hollywood Interactive, THQ, Turner, Ubisoft
Jeff Warner, Mobile Developer Lead
Technology leader and innovator with 25 years of experience in telecommunications, healthcare, financial services, entertainment and publishing. Extensive experience delivering successful customer facing and internal products using agile as well as traditional methodologies. Proven team and product leadership in both enterprise IT as well as software development groups. Highly personable, work collaboratively with teams, peers and business leaders; strong written and verbal communication skills.
Recognized as a creative problem solver in software, infrastructure and operations. Highlights include web portal supporting over 24 million users, iOS app supporting over 800,000 users, multiple data warehouses, initiating DevOps efforts as well as leading private and public cloud projects.
Emerson Galfo, SVP Operations
Emerson has more than 25 years of progressive accounting, finance and operational experience in a wide array of industries including financial services, family office, banking, private equity, B2B service, non-profit, real estate development & construction, app/software development, media/publishing and more recently, the water/environmental space. He has been partnering with entrepreneurial and corporate CEOs and BODs for the last 18 years recommending and establishing structure to facilitate growth, scale businesses, improving bottom line results and increasing shareholder value. His C-Level roles span from CFO, COO and Chief of Staff to the CEO.
David Bishop, EVP Operations
David is a leader and change agent, proficient with strategic planning as well as tactical workflow. He has been in key management positions in the out-of-home entertainment industry since 1981 including 3 years at Atari and 26 years at Namco, where he evolved a sub-$6 million business into $130+ million organization via M&A as well as accelerated organic growth, punctuated by periodic restructuring of weak business units. Shepherd of a retail-oriented service company employing up to 2,500 employees across as many as 1,400 operational sites and utilizing over 27,000 pieces of equipment. Evangelist and creative developer for new business models, technology, and equipment.
Specialties: Planning & forecasting, crafting organizations and guiding people, owning the guest/user experience, managing groups in stress, identifying trends to convert technology into toasters and build markets/opportunities, “skating to where the puck will be…”
Kevin Williams, KWP Consultant, Founder at DNA Association & Conference
Founder and director of the out-of-home leisure entertainment consultancy KWP Ltd. he has amassed a unique experience of the past and present of the industries that are defining themselves as key to the DOE arena – after leaving school, he has worked with leaders in amusement, commercial and military simulation, virtual reality, theme parks, game software and CGi technology.
Possessing an incredible background of working on both sides of the business table as developer, manufacturer and originator – he is one of the unique group of past Walt Disney Imagineers. A well-known commentator in the trade media including InterGame, Replay Magazine, Vending Times and Arcade Heroes, he also publishes his own provocative news service and is a veteran moderator and presenter on the aspects that drive this market and related markets – he is also co-author of the leading publication on this sector (The Out-of-Home Entertainment Frontier). From his position in the digital out-of-home entertainment sector, he has championed the non-traditional opportunities this sector affords.
Kevin Bachus, Senior Vice President, Entertainment & Games Strategy at Dave & Buster’s
One of the best-known and most highly respected executives in the video game industry and an active investor in the digital media sector, Kevin was one of the original group of four individuals at Microsoft Corporation who came up with the idea for the Xbox video game system, an initiative that grew in part out of his role as group product manager for the Direct X family of Windows technologies.
As Microsoft’s first director of third-party relations for Xbox, Kevin secured support for Xbox from all major game publishers worldwide and created and managed the programs and processes that would ultimately lead to the strongest software lineup ever for the launch of a game console.
Prior to joining Microsoft, Kevin served in a number of business and production capacities at Mindscape, a video game industry pioneer. After leaving Microsoft, Kevin co-founded or served in an executive capacity at a number of innovative, venture-backed companies including Capital Entertainment Group, the video game industry’s first independent production company; Infinium Labs, a pioneer in the field of digital software distribution whose flagship product was a finalist for Best Hardware at the 2004 Electronic Entertainment Expo; and Nival Interactive, the largest independent game developer in Eastern Europe.
Although he developed a number of games on his own during the industry’s infancy, Kevin chose to attend the prestigious University of Southern California School of Cinema-Television where he majored in screenwriting and directing, before combining his two passions, technology and entertainment, in the field of interactive entertainment.
Non-executive / External Board Members
Bernie Stolar, President of WestEnd Interactive LLC, Manager of Boulderriverholdings LLC
Former President of Sega of America, Former President Mattel Interactive, Former President of Atari. Bernie Stolar has been a leader in the interactive and video game industry for over 30 years. As EVP of PlayStation, where he was in charge of third party relations and business development, as well as in his position as president of Sega of America, where he lead the team in the launch of Dreamcast, the most successful commercial console launch in the history of gaming. Bernie has proven himself to be a master of strategic direction. In a role created by Google to tap Bernie’s unique talents, he became their Games Evangelist, responsible for all video game and in-game advertising, after the acquisition of his company, Adscape. Bernie is currently the CEO of The Stolar Group, a strategic consulting company geared toward finding new opportunities in the interactive and digital distribution markets. Working with companies on Branding Strategy,IP optimization, product development both consumer and entertainment.