Stephen Ciesinski is SRI International’s Vice President and General Manager. In this role, he has overall responsibility for SRI's international and commercial business development, innovation programs, corporate energy and industrial sector initiatives, corporate strategy, and other major programs.
Ciesinski believes that innovation drives job creation, economic growth and societal good. His role and responsibilities at SRI and his experiences with early-stage ventures provide him with a unique perspective on entrepreneurial practices both within the U.S. and in many other countries.
As a passionate advocate of team learning, he believes that entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs alike gain from valuable interactions with colleagues, customers, students, mentors, consultants, and other professionals as part of any new venture or business opportunity.
Ciesinski’s professional experience includes a number of industries and businesses: consumer products, semiconductor capital equipment, telecommunications, mobile/wireless, applications software, Web 2.0, open source, medical devices, and others. As a corporate officer, board member, advisor and investor, he has participated in or managed numerous strategic events, including new business formation, product launches, private financings, IPOs, M&A transactions and leveraged buyouts.
Ciesinski has held executive management positions with Applied Materials, a global manufacturer of semiconductor capital equipment; Octel Communications, a worldwide leader in voice-messaging products; Resumix, Inc., the inventor of Web-based personnel recruiting applications; and Laszlo Systems, a pioneer in Web 2.0 software and provider of complex Internet applications to Global 2000 and telecommunications service operators. He started his career at Procter & Gamble, was a consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton, and also served as a venture partner with Earlybird Ventures.
Ciesinski is an active international angel investor, and assists several private companies as advisor and board member. He is also an advisor to Start-up Chile, a program of Chilean Government to attract world-class early-stage entrepreneurs to start their businesses in Chile; Seoul Space, Korea’s startup incubator and IT hub; and Innovation Centre Denmark.
Ciesinski is also a lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB) where he teaches Evaluating Entrepreneurial Opportunities and Social Entrepreneurship.
Ciesinski is past chairman of the Board of Trustees for Union College and is a lifetime trustee. He is also past chairman of the President’s Cabinet at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly).
He is a graduate of Union College with a BS in Electrical Engineering and an AB Modern Languages, and received an MBA from Stanford University.
Ciesinski resides in Los Altos Hills, California with his wife and two sons. They are founders of the Kalele Foundation, dedicated to providing character and self-esteem development experiences for disadvantaged children.