We partner across the tech industry, government and NGOs and leverage technology to combat predatory behavior, accelerate victim identification, and protect vulnerable children.
Thorn Technology Task Force
The Thorn Technology Task Force is comprised of more than 20 technology companies that lend their knowledge, time and resources to the work that we do.
Dr. Michael Seto
Board of Directors
Co-Founder of Thorn, Ashton is an actor, entrepreneur, tech investor, producer and philanthropist focused on using technology to effect positive changes in the world. In 2010 Time Magazine named him among their Top 100 Most Influential People; the following year, Vanity Fair honored him in their 2011 New Establishment List, which identifies the top 50 of an innovative new breed of buccaneering visionaries, engineering prodigies and entrepreneurs.
Demi is an actress and a long-standing advocate for women’s issues. She received a Golden Globe nomination for her role in If These Walls Could Talk and a Director’s Guild nomination for Five, an anthology of short films that explore the impact of breast cancer. She partnered with CNN Freedom Project for the documentary Nepal’s Stolen Children to highlight the work of anti-trafficking advocate Anuradha Koirala.
Ray (United Nations Secretary-General’s Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Advocate and Special Envoy for Malaria) is a philanthropist and humanitarian who directs most of his efforts toward helping children. He is the founding chairman of the Points of Light Foundation and cofounder, with Colin Powell, of America’s Promise—The Alliance for Youth. He also cofounded the National Mentoring Partnership, the Millennium Promise Alliance and Malaria No More.
Jim is an entrepreneur and scientist. He co-founded Attributor (acq. Digimarc), advised Facebook on their ad targeting systems, was CEO of Moreover Technologies (acq. Verisign), and co-founded Outride (acq. Google). Jim was a research scientist at Xerox PARC and Chair of the WWW Consortium’s Web Characterization Activity. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology and graduated Cum Laude in Psychology from the University of Colorado, where he helped prototype some of the first uses of the Web within NASA.
Padmasree is responsible for the brains of NextEV's autonomous, electric vehicles and the overall user experience. She is based in San Jose, CA where NextEV US is headquartered. Previously, Warrior served as the Chief Technology & Strategy Officer (CTSO) for Cisco until September 2015. In this capacity, she was charged with aligning the company's technology and business strategy to business results and driving corporate strategy, mergers, acquisitions, venture investments, and strategic partnerships. Prior to that, she was executive vice president and CTO at Motorola. Forbes named her one of ``The World's 100 Most Powerful Women,`` for three years running. Business Insider called her one of the ``25 Most Influential Women in Wireless,`` and the Aspen Institute honored her with its first Leadership in Science and Technology Award. In addition to NextEV's board, Warrior serves on the board of Microsoft and previously served on the board of Gap and Box.
As a Silicon Valley technology lawyer outside pro bono counsel for Thorn, and the mother of three daughters, Suzanne has been a longtime supporter of Thorn’s mission to apply technology to fight online child exploitation. Suzanne is a partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and head of the Intellectual Property/Technology Transactions – IT practice, where she advises entrepreneurs and companies on IP licenses, commercial transactions, and technology transfers and acquisitions. She has worked with many of Silicon Valley’s prominent companies on deals involving their transformative technologies that spawned new industries. Her clients appreciate her ability to understand their technology and businesses and craft practical solutions in complex contract negotiations. In 2009 she was named a “Woman of Influence” by the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal and is rated at the top of her profession by peer review publications. Suzanne is also on the Board of Directors of Girl Scouts of Northern California.
Joe Lonsdale is a founding partner at 8VC, a San Francisco-based venture capital fund. He serves on several boards including Addepar, OpenGov, Oscar, Illumio, Radius, Hyperloop-One and Wish. Joe is a co-founder of Palantir, a multi-billion dollar global software company best known for its work in defense and finance. Most recently, he was a founding partner at Formation 8, the precursor fund to 8VC, which manages over 1.5 billion USD and is one of the top performing private funds. Before that, he founded Addepar, a leading wealth management technology platform, and OpenGov. Previously, Joe was an early executive at Peter Thiel's Clarium Capital, which they grew into a large global macro hedge fund. He also worked with the financial arm of PayPal while he was at Stanford. Joe received a B.S. in Computer Science from Stanford in 2003. He often lectures and writes on entrepreneurship and technology.
An expert on the digital economy, public private partnerships and child protection, he speaks to global audiences and advises governments, law enforcement, technology companies and nonprofits. Appointed by UK Prime Minister David Cameron he heads a global effort to combat online child exploitation. A founder, President and CEO of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children, he was called “one of American’s foremost social entrepreneurs” by President George W. Bush; named “Executive of the Year” by NonProfit Times; and one of the “Most Influential People in Security” by Security Magazine.
Julie came to Thorn from (RED) where she was VP of Marketing/Communications and helped establish the brand as one most successful cause marketing initiatives in history, delivering more than $160 million to fight AIDS in Africa. Prior to joining (RED), Julie spent nearly a decade in the wireless industry helping to launch HELIO, a mobile virtual network operator, and leading Motorola’s global category marketing team. Julie holds a B.A. in Communications, from UCLA and an M.B.A. from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.
Sarah has been a part of the Thorn team for over four years, overseeing all aspects of development, including raising philanthropic dollars, pursuing federal and state support for Thorn’s tools, and identifying corporate sponsors. She has helped grow Thorn’s Defenders Circle, Thorn’s major giving program, from $800K in 2012, to over $5.2M in 2016. She has recently returned to her roots in Los Angeles, after working in Washington DC for six years. Prior to joining Thorn, Sarah worked at Free the Slaves, an International NGO dedicated to ending modern day slavery, where she oversaw the Major Giving Program. Sarah holds a B.A. from the University of California Berkeley where she studied Art History and Gender Studies.
Brooke oversees all of Thorn’s programs, products and operations to ensure effective and efficient execution of Thorn’s mission. Prior to joining Thorn, Brooke spent over 12 years working in IT consulting, operations, and program management, supporting Fortune 500 clients in Telecommunications and Entertainment. She has significant volunteer experience in the anti-trafficking movement and currently serves on the Board of Journey Out in Los Angeles. She holds B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Alabama and an M.A. in Cross-Cultural Studies from Fuller Seminary.
Leah is a human rights activist who spent a considerable amount of time managing services for African refugees in Israel. She has extensive experience volunteering with families from developing countries and is passionate about serving underprivileged populations. She holds a B.A. in Sociology with a Certificate in Criminal Justice from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Sugreev analyzes Thorn’s rich data set in order to improve its deterrence program and better understand the demand for online child sexual exploitation content. He has had years of analytics experience in the field of experimental and computational fusion energy physics, and more recently was a data scientist working with realtime sensor data for healthcare and defense applications. He holds a B.A. in Physics and Applied Mathematics from UC Berkeley and is pursuing a Ph.D. in Engineering Physics from UC San Diego.
Kristin came to Thorn from 41st Parameter where she was Sr. Product Manager and developed the product strategy and roadmap for FraudNet – the leading web fraud detection software protecting the world’s premium brands against cyber fraud. Kristin has over 14 years of experience in product management, product marketing, online community development, business analysis and project management. She volunteers as a Team Captain for Team World Vision to raise awareness and funds to provide clean water to the worlds most vulnerable children in developing countries. She graduated Summa Cum Laude in Psychology from California Lutheran University.
Ruben van der Dussen
Ruben researches and develops technology used to fight child abuse. He looks for ways the latest technology can address problems in the field of online child abuse. With these technologies he is building a platform that is used by the industry to fight online child abuse. Prior to Thorn he worked in healthcare. First as a strategy consultant, later as a software engineer building the next generation of patient monitoring using AI. He holds a B.S. in systems engineering from Delft University of Technology. Ruben is driven by the use of technology to solve issues in society.
Nikisha supports Thorn in their extensive development efforts and joins the team with a diverse set of fundraising and nonprofit experience. Prior to joining Thorn, Nikisha was responsible for donor, brand, and event management for weSPARK Cancer Support Center. Passionate about social impact and volunteerism, Nikisha also worked for the Special Olympics World Games 2015: Los Angeles raising money for the international athletes attending the games and spent considerable time driving campus-wide mental health and wellness initiatives on her college campus. Originally from the Bay Area, she holds a B.S. in Psychobiology from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Mike builds software used to fight child abuse. Prior to Thorn, he worked at BigFix and then IBM creating a large-scale systems management platform. His background is in computer security and distributed computing. Mike is also a comedy writer; his work can be seen on the screen at Medium and on the stage at Killing My Lobster sketch shows in San Francisco. He holds a B.A. in Computer Science from Carleton College and an M.S. in Computer Science from University of Wisconsin – Madison.
Chase researches technology and develops software used to fight child abuse. He is passionate about improving society through practical software. Prior to Thorn, he worked at Amazon developing customer-facing features and large-scale supporting systems for the Silk browser using Amazon Web Services. Chase also composes modern piano pieces in his free time. He graduated Summa Cum Laude in Computer Science from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
Danielle supports the start up of Thorn's policy strategy and the continued growth of our development efforts. She comes to Thorn from the campaign trail with a broad range of community organizing and program management experience. Prior to politics, Danielle was a consultant at Deloitte where she served federal and nonprofit clients at the intersection of human rights and national security and helped launch of the firm's anti-trafficking practice. Danielle graduated summa cum laude from Loyola University Maryland and believes that women and girls can change the world.
Douglas designs and develops software used to fight child abuse. Prior to Thorn, he filled a variety of roles at companies big and small, such as UI/UX designer, full-stack web developer, engineering manager, game designer/developer/producer, and creative director. He holds a BFA in Web Design & New Media from the Academy of Art University, where he studied UI and UX design. In his spare time, Douglas tends his urban permaculture mini-farm, renovates his old farmhouse, embarks on outdoorsy adventures with his giant wolfdogs, and designs games of all manner.
Sarah supports Thorn's communications and marketing efforts. With a background working with local anti-trafficking organizations, to San Francisco hardware startups, Sarah builds on the unique value proposition of each brand to create a relatable, actionable story for large communities. Sarah holds a B.A. in political science and creative writing from Vassar College.
Kristy manages Thorn's digital presence — from social media channels to the website to email and beyond. She expands upon new and existing advertising opportunities to support Thorn's brand and programmatic goals. Prior to Thorn, Kristy spent five years at digital marketing agency, helping nonprofit clients big and small create positive change and amplify their voice through various digital platforms. She holds a B.A. in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Bria oversees the ongoing management of Thorn products — from roadmap to realization, and everything in between. For the last five years, she’s worked closely with users on gathering product feedback, go-to-market strategies and training for new product releases. Bria is passionate about bringing awareness to the anti-trafficking movement, particularly in her home base of Portland, Oregon. She graduated summa cum laude with a degree in Marketing and International Business from Arizona State University.
Pro Bono Partners
Thank you to those who contribute their expertise to help achieve our goals.