Co-Founder & CEO
Dr. Sankar Jayaram is the co-founder, President and CEO of VOKE. An expert in the field of Virtual Reality and 3-D visualization, Jay has been very successful delivering powerful visionary ideas of virtual reality applications and monetization to media, manufacturing, prototyping, smart homes, and augmented reality. For more than 20 years, Jay has brought to market highly innovative solutions and products combining virtual reality, immersive environments, powerful user controllable media experiences, and social networks. A Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), he was recognized by Mashable as one of the top five VR innovators at CES 2016 and was honored as one of the Top 15 “Idea Innovators” by Sports Business Journal.
Prior to creating VOKE, Jay served 22 years as a professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering and an affiliate professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Washington State University. In 1994, he founded the virtual reality lab at WSU with a focus on creating cutting edge solutions in engineering, training and simulation. The seminal work done by his team in virtual assembly and virtual prototyping in the 90s continues to be widely referenced by groups around the world.
Chief Commercial Officer
Dr. Jeff Jonas is Chief Commercial Officer at VOKE, leading business development for the company. An eight-time Emmy award winner, Jeff has been an influential leader in the sports media industry for the past 20 years. His creative vision and business acumen have helped bring several different technologies to market, including the First and 10 line in football, K-Zone in baseball and Race f/x in NASCAR.
Before joining VOKE, he was the Executive Vice President for Sportvision, an innovator of sports and entertainment products for fans, media companies and marketers. Prior to Sportvision, Jeff led a sports technology startup effort, Coach’s Edge, which was acquired by Sportvision. Jeff received his undergraduate degree from Carleton College before earning his PhD in sports psychology from the University of Kansas.
Co-Founder & COO
Dr. Uma Jayaram is co-founder and COO at VOKE, overseeing the corporate operations and strategy behind creating immersive fan experiences. Her contributions to virtual reality and engineering earned her a “Lifetime Achievement” award by the International Society of Agile Manufacturing (ISAM) as well as induction as a Fellow to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).
Prior to VOKE, Uma spent 22 years as an Associate Professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering and an affiliate Associate Professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Washington State University. While there, she co-founded WSU’s virtual reality lab and brought world recognition to the group’s effort in VR, CAD, visualization, and artificial intelligence methods for engineering. Uma is a founding member of three different companies. She became one of the first women to receive an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from IIT Kharagpur. She later earned her Ph.D. from Virginia Tech.
Chief Strategy & Product Officer
David Aufhauser is Chief Strategy and Product Officer at VOKE. He is responsible for creating and executing the company’s strategic plan for bringing immersive products to market. David has spent more than 20 years leading multifunctional teams to build digital media businesses at the nexus of technology, media and sports/entertainment including at Yahoo!, AOL, Justin.tv/Twitch and Pac-12 Networks.
Most recently, David was a founding member of the executive team at Pac-12 Networks and led the creation of all digital properties, including mobile apps, social media, Pac-12.com, the universities’ athletic mobile/websites and Pac-12 Now, one of the first-ever 24/7 live TV Everywhere services. Under David’s guidance, Pac-12 digital delivered triple digit growth year-over-year for three years in a row, including a 500% boost in fan engagement in 2015-16. David received his undergraduate degree at Stanford University before a Master’s at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Business.