OUR

TEAM

Paul Salisbury portrait

Paul Salisbury

CEO

Paul Salisbury is the Chief Executive Officer at Dura Software. He is the operational brains behind the organization focused on evaluating, transitioning, and optimizing acquisitions.

Previously, Paul operated as a Senior Vice President for Rackspace, leading a team of 300 employees that delivered “Fanatical Support” to over 55,000 North American Hybrid and Cloud customers. Paul’s organization served 70% of the Fortune 100 delivering superior technical expertise and a world class customer experience. Paul left Rackspace in May of 2017 to pursue entrepreneurial interests and co-founded Dura Software in 2018.

Prior to joining Rackspace, Paul served as Professional Services Regional GM at Dell Computer Corporation where he oversaw the delivery of consulting services engagements for the Eastern United States. Paul’s 25+ year career in technology also includes implementing large-scale ERP solutions at Ernst and Young Consulting in the United States and abroad and leading Manufacturing Process Controls efforts for Procter and Gamble.

Paul holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University California, Santa Barbara and an MBA from the University of Texas. Originally from Northern California, Paul has been in Texas now for more than 20 years and became a San Antonio resident in 2011. Paul loves the Texas outdoors and in his free time you can find him on the golf course or at the beach with his wife and two daughters.

Michael Girdley portrait

Michael Girdley

Executive Chairman

Michael Girdley is the Chairman of the Board and head of strategy at Dura Software. Michael manages the firm’s strategic initiatives including acquisition strategy and growth planning/execution. He also adds technical expertise to Dura’s business operations.

Previously, Michael was Managing Director of the Geekdom Fund, a seed-stage tech venture capital fund with $24 million under management that has invested in over 50 high-growth tech companies.

Michael has also co-founded several tech-related companies and nonprofits: Codeup, Alamo Angels, and the RealCo Accelerator.  Prior to diving into San Antonio’s tech sector, Michael was CEO of Alamo Fireworks, the largest retailer of consumer fireworks in Texas. Under his leadership, the family business transitioned from 3rd to 4th generation leadership and grew by over 50%.

Academically, Michael’s background is rooted in technology. He received a BS in Computer Science from Lafayette College. Michael began his career in San Francisco, where he held engineering and marketing roles at RSA Security and BEA WebLogic, where, at age 25, he was the lead product manager for a $300mm business.

Michael serves on the boards of Alamo Angels, Codeup, RealCo Micro VC, Prospectify, and Alamo Fireworks. In 2015, the San Antonio Business Journal named Michael “Man of the Year”.  Michael has also authored several books on computer programming which have been translated into four languages.

Chris Burney portrait

Chris Burney

CFO

Chris Burney is the Chief Financial Officer at Dura Software, where he oversees acquisitions, capital allocation, and financial management of Dura Software’s business lines.  Chris joined Dura Software as an investor and co-founder in September 2018.

Previously, Chris served as the Founding Executive Director and Board Chair at Alamo Angels. Since its inception in December 2016, Chris managed Alamo Angels’ growth to over 100 investor members who have invested over $2.5M in startup businesses.

Prior to Alamo Angels, Chris spent four years at Rackspace where he held roles on the operational and strategic finance teams.  Chris’ responsibilities at Rackspace included leading a team of financial analysts overseeing a $450M annual operating budget as well as supporting corporate M&A activities.

Chris is a native San Antonian who returned home permanently in 2012 after spending 10 years living and working in New York and North Carolina.  During his free time, Chris enjoys playing competitive tennis and exploring new events and locales in the San Antonio area with his wife Lizzie and three young girls.

Chris holds an undergraduate degree from Duke University and an MBA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  He has also held roles at J.P. Morgan and Thomson Financial in New York City.

Connor Chamness

Conor Chamness

Corporate Development

Conor Chamness is responsible for sourcing, engaging, and evaluating acquisition opportunities at Dura Software.

Originally from the DC Area, Conor moved to San Antonio in late 2018 as a Venture for America Fellow. Prior to the Fellowship and joining the team at Dura, he worked in business development, marketing, and operations at a number of startups and consulting organizations.

Conor is a graduate of Boston College with degrees in Finance and Economics. Now that he lives in Texas, he cannot conceive of a reason people would choose to live somewhere without palm trees.

Joseph Villafranca

CTO

Joseph Villafranca leads the mission to build valuable, sustainable, and evolvable software at each of the businesses Dura operates.

He currently also serves as the CEO of Grok Interactive, one of the longest standing software consultancies in San Antonio, specializing in developing cutting edge software to solve many different business problems. He’s written software professionally for over five years, in as many different languages and technology stacks as that amount of time could reasonably allow.

He holds a Bachelor of Business of Administration from Texas A&M University and is a graduate of the inaugural Codeup cohort.

Amy Garza

Project Manager

Amy Garza manages the due diligence and transition processes for all new acquisitions, along with managing several strategic projects for Dura. 

Amy is a native South Texan and currently a 2020 Venture for America Fellow. Prior to Dura, Amy worked in various roles throughout the food and agricultural industry including marketing and promotions, supply chain management, vendor relationship management, and strategic planning

Amy is a Cornell University graduate  holding a Bachelor of Science in International Agriculture. You can find Amy exploring and drinking her way through the San Antonio coffee scene, enjoying a local farmer’s market, or supporting one of the local sports teams.

Abreham Dadi

Corporate Development

Abreham Dadi assists in deal sourcing and acquisition evaluation at Dura Software.                                                           

Abreham is a Texas native who was raised in Dallas. In the past, Abreham has worked with universities, public policy firms, and a start up he founded and later gave to a large public university. He’s held roles in project management, data analysis, and relationship management. Abreham is currently a Venture for America Fellow and moved to San Antonio mid-2019.

Abreham holds a Bachelors of Science in Economics from Texas A&M University – College Station.

Kiersten Walsh

Chief of Staff

Kiersten Walsh is the Chief of Staff at Dura Software, where she is responsible for a broad range of administrative and financial operations.

Originally from Michigan, Kiersten moved to San Antonio in mid-2019 to escape the cold. Prior to Dura, Kiersten has been involved in roles that entailed marketing, operations, design, and community outreach. Kiersten graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelors of Science in Merchandising and Design.

Chris Smith

Controller

Chris Smith is the Controller at Dura Software, where he oversees  global accounting operations and guides financial decisions by establishing, monitoring, and enforcing policies and procedures.

Prior to Dura, Chris held accounting leadership roles at Verimatrix, VizExplorer, and Jack Henry & Associates. In those roles, he played an integral part of implementing new systems, streamlining processes, and compliance with complex revenue arrangements. He brings a deep background in software accounting to Dura and San Antonio. 

Chris holds a Master of Accountancy from Missouri State University and is a CPA. He relocated to San Antonio early 2020 from San Diego and is looking forward to exploring all the great things Texas has to offer. Outside of the office you’ll find Chris doing anything active and enjoying the outdoors. Some of his favorite activities are going on hikes or adventures with his wife Sarah and their dog Maximus. 

Simone Tobin

Accountant

Simone Tobin is the Accountant at Dura Software, where she provides accurate reconciliation of business accounts. This includes bank statements, credit cardsanalysis of accounts and reporting of financial variances and inaccuracies.                                                      

Simone is originally from Brazil and has been a citizen of the US since 2013. She speaks fluent Portuguese, English and is learning Spanish. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Advancing Studies, Boston College since 2008.  

Her knowledge comes from when she worked as a Shared Service Accountant at UPS and Sally Beauty LLC. She lived in Boston until 2014 and decided to move to DFW area after the Money Magazine voted McKinney the 2nd Best Places to Live in the US.

Since then, she has been enjoying small road trips throughout Texas with her husband and dogs. She enjoys attending wineries, Spring Wildflowers, and Hill Country events to help support the local community. 

She has volunteered with Operation Kindness in North Dallas  as a Volunteer Trainer as well as an Adoption Handler. She holds volunteerism and charity close to her heart. Not to mention, she is a huge fan of the Soccer World Cup, Dallas Cowboys, and Boston Bruins. 

 

Gerry Diaz-Phillips

Recruiter

Gerry Diaz-Phillips is the Recruiter at Dura Software, where he overseas all recruiting and talent acquisition.                                                           

Gerry is a native of New Jersey and attended the University of Richmond on a football scholarship, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science. After college he continued his athletic pursuits by becoming a nationally ranked powerlifter and fitness club owner. Gerry began his career in Recruiting in Miami, Florida and quickly realized it was the correct industry for him. 

Gerry relocated to San Antonio in November of 2007 and has been a part of San Antonio’s growing ecosystem ever since. In 2015 Gerry founded Tech Talent Texas. A non-profit organization focused on providing content on resume, writing, interviewing and networking skills to entry and mid-level technology professionals. 

During the course of his recruiting career Gerry has worked on all levels of IT positions, from Help Desk roles with clients to confidential requirements with the Department of Defense. Gerry brings a career’s worth of experience to the Dura team. 

Carlos Navarrete

Operations Manager

Carlos Navarrete is an Operations Manager at Dura Software, where he leads the strategy of the company to extend its footprint into Latin America and bring the culture, vision, and best practices at each of the businesses that Dura operates.                        

Prior to Dura, Carlos served as a Customer Success Manager for Moki, the first company acquired by Dura back in 2018. Carlos also worked as an Enterprise Account Manager at Rackspace, where he successfully helped the businesses serving the top Latin American customers, whom together held $12mm of annual revenue, kept churn under 0.5% and maintained more than 30% growth YoY.

Previously, Carlos spent almost two decades working for the main information technology companies including IBM, Hewlett Packard, and EDS, gaining experience in IT management, digital transformation, and business administration.

Carlos is a proud Mexican living in the US and his formula for success is to bring the best of both cultures. Carlos’ mantra is “You don’t know who you really are until you leave the place you’re from”. He speaks fluent Spanish and English, and loves spending time with his family and traveling to new places all over the world. 

Carlos graduated from Universidad del Valle de Mexico (UVM) with a BS in Computer Sciences and holds an MBA from the “Tec de Monterrey“.

OUR

CEOs

Adam Maher
CEO of Moki

Adam Maher is the Chief Executive Officer at Moki. He is responsible for leading all strategic and business operations of Moki.

Previously, Adam operated as a Vice President of Customer Success for DealerSocket, leading a team of 180 employees serving over 10,000 businesses with 250,000+ users in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Adam’s organization delivered an unwavering mentality of “Customer Obsession” while providing a best-in-class customer experience serving their customers as their “trusted advisor”. In the 8+ years Adam was at DealerSocket, he led teams through four acquisitions, revenue growth of over 10x and achieving unicorn status.

Adam holds a BS in Economics with a minor in Business Management from Brigham Young University. Growing up as a Navy brat, Adam calls many places home, adding San Antonio as of March 2019. Adam loves to travel and in his free time, you can find him at Orangetheory Fitness or spending time with his wife, daughter, son and 160-pound Cane Corso mastiff.

Justin Brady
CEO of Nordic IT

Justin Brady is the Chief Executive Officer at Nordic IT. He is responsible for leading all strategic and business operations of Nordic IT.                                                      

Previously Justin operated as Vice President of Customer Success for Rackspace, leading a team of 250 employees supporting customers across multiple dedicated and cloud server product lines.  Serving a base of customers ranging from small-medium businesses to the largest enterprises, Justin’s teams repeatedly delivered the highest levels of customer satisfaction and customer retention within the company. His passion for building a great culture and developing people has allowed him to consistently create high performing and highly engaged teams over the years.

Prior to joining Rackspace, Justin operated as the Director of IT for a large San Antonio-based law firm. He was responsible for the strategic planning and the operation of all hardware and software solutions, along with the associated networking and telephony infrastructure.

Justin holds a B.A. in American History from Washington and Lee University and an MAA in Administration from the University of the Incarnate Word.  Originally from New York, Justin moved to San Antonio in 2001. He and his wife, Kim, have two young daughters and in their free time enjoy spending time at the beach or exploring the Texas countryside.

Ruben Castano
CEO of 6Connex

Ruben Castano is the Chief Executive Officer at 6Connex. He is responsible for leading all strategic and business operations of 6Connex.

Previously, Ruben operated as Chief Revenue Officer for Blue Software LLC., a Danaher Company, leading a global team serving 100,000+ users, 12,000+ brands and 5,000+ companies worldwide.  Ruben’s organization helped transform a go to market strategy that drove disruption in an industry delivering significant high velocity revenue growth of ACV with a 440% increase over a two-year period.

Prior to joining Blue Software, Ruben served as Vice President and Managing Director, Americas at 1WorldSync, a Battery Ventures Company. In the 13+ years at 1WorldSync serving more than 17,000 customers across 54 countries, Ruben led teams turning a previously flat level performing organization to double-digit percentage growth results year over year.

 

Ruben holds a BBA in Management from the University of Texas, San Antonio. Ruben has lived in Texas his entire life calling San Antonio home since 1990. He and his wife Belinda have 2 daughters and in his free time you can find him enjoying the Texas outdoors (golf, hunting, fishing) or hosting a BBQ.

OUR

BOARD

John McGuire

John McGuire is currently the Founder of Fructify LLC, a fintech start-up providing supply chain finance solutions to agricultural exporters in emerging markets.                                                   

Previously, John was the owner of Loop Cold Storage Co., a family owned business which ran the largest refrigerated warehousing operation on the US-Mexico border.  During his tenure with the company, the company grew from 60 to 200 employees and profits increased by 2.5x, before a successful exit to Lineage Logistics in 2014.

John holds a BBA from Southern Methodist University and an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management.

Bianca Rhodes

Bianca Martinez Rhodes is the President of Knight Aerospace Medical Systems, LLC, which designs and manufactures specialized aerospace products that maximize the utilization of cargo aircraft.

Bianca began her career as a Commercial Banker for National Bank of Commerce, the second largest bank in San Antonio.  After six years, she left to work for one of her clients, TexCom Management Services, a computer leasing company.  She helped the Company consolidate a 34 bank group into one which positioned the company to be sold to Intelogic Trace, (NYSE:IT), for which she became the Chief Financial Officer. 

After Intelogic Trace, she joined Kinetic Concepts Inc. (NASDQ: KNCI) whom she had helped to take public a few years earlier.  As its CFO, she engineered a turnaround which more than quadrupled the company’s valuation and enabled its private offering just three years later. 

After KCI’s successful private sale and wanting to focus more on her three young children, she started consulting for a number of private enterprises, specializing in financial and operating issues.  She has also managed her family’s asset portfolio consisting of several apartment complexes, single family homes, and various other real estate ventures.  Rhodes has successfully raised capital, structured buyouts, and advised dozens of companies, primarily in the health care sector. 

Her career includes numerous voluntary positions especially targeted to women’s real choices including the founding of Any Woman Can, and various civic board positions with organizations such as AirLife San Antonio, Junior Achievement of San Antonio, Big Brothers and Sisters of San Antonio, Lighthouse for the Blind, and the San Antonio Greater Chamber of Commerce.

Bianca graduated from the University of Texas with a BBA in Finance. Bianca has been married to Jim, an investment professional with Wells Fargo for more than 32 years and has three children and two grandchildren.  Besides her family, her passions include reading, God, and the mountains of Colorado.

Matt Morris

Matt Morris is the Founder & Managing Partner of Ozone Capital Management, LLC. At OZCM, Matt drives deal sourcing/firm strategy (real estate and operating businesses) and leads operating business investment activities.                                                 

Previously, Matt was a Senior Analyst at Pelorus Jack Capital (“PJC”), a San Francisco-based investment partnership. Matt was a fundamental analyst and actively invested in multiple sectors.

Previous to PJC, Matt was a founding team member of Challen Asset Management (“CAM”). Matt opened the firm’s Menlo Park, CA office and was responsible for driving primary research on individual direct investments, as well as funds.

Previous to “CAM”, Matt was an Investment Manager at Northgate Capital (“NC”), a $4.8b AUM alternative asset management firm, where he sourced, analyzed and ultimately deployed Private Equity and Venture Capital primary fund commitments and co-investments across US, Western Europe, and Emerging Markets. He also analyzed and monitored primarily enterprise investments for the “NCD” (Northgate Capital Direct) portfolio where Northgate invested alongside most of the top Silicon Valley-based VC funds. Northgate Capital was ultimately sold to Religare Enterprises during Matt’s tenure.

While in business school, Matt interned at Payden & Rygel in the equity and high yield groups during the depths of the Global Financial Crisis.

Prior to business school, Matt worked in commercial real estate brokerage and private equity respectively at CB Richard Ellis in Los Angeles, as well as Divco West in Palo  Alto.

Matt earned an MBA with a Finance emphasis from UCLA Anderson School of Management and a BA from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Matt lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, Anna, and three kids (Audrey, George and Mason).

Michael Girdley portrait

Michael Girdley

Michael Girdley is the Chairman of the Board and head of strategy at Dura Software. Michael manages the firm’s strategic initiatives including acquisition strategy and growth planning/execution. He also adds technical expertise to Dura’s business operations.

Previously, Michael was Managing Director of the Geekdom Fund, a seed-stage tech venture capital fund with $24 million under management that has invested in over 50 high-growth tech companies.

Michael has also co-founded several tech-related companies and nonprofits: Codeup, Alamo Angels, and the RealCo Accelerator.  Prior to diving into San Antonio’s tech sector, Michael was CEO of Alamo Fireworks, the largest retailer of consumer fireworks in Texas. Under his leadership, the family business transitioned from 3rd to 4th generation leadership and grew by over 50%.

Academically, Michael’s background is rooted in technology. He received a BS in Computer Science from Lafayette College. Michael began his career in San Francisco, where he held engineering and marketing roles at RSA Security and BEA WebLogic, where, at age 25, he was the lead product manager for a $300mm business.

Michael serves on the boards of Alamo Angels, Codeup, RealCo Micro VC, Prospectify, and Alamo Fireworks. In 2015, the San Antonio Business Journal named Michael “Man of the Year”.  Michael has also authored several books on computer programming which have been translated into four languages.

Paul Salisbury portrait

Paul Salisbury

Paul Salisbury is the Chief Executive Officer at Dura Software. He is the operational brains behind the organization focused on evaluating, transitioning, and optimizing acquisitions.

Previously, Paul operated as a Senior Vice President for Rackspace, leading a team of 300 employees that delivered “Fanatical Support” to over 55,000 North American Hybrid and Cloud customers. Paul’s organization served 70% of the Fortune 100 delivering superior technical expertise and a world class customer experience. Paul left Rackspace in May of 2017 to pursue entrepreneurial interests and co-founded Dura Software in 2018.

Prior to joining Rackspace, Paul served as Professional Services Regional GM at Dell Computer Corporation where he oversaw the delivery of consulting services engagements for the Eastern United States. Paul’s 25+ year career in technology also includes implementing large-scale ERP solutions at Ernst and Young Consulting in the United States and abroad and leading Manufacturing Process Controls efforts for Procter and Gamble.

Paul holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University California, Santa Barbara and an MBA from the University of Texas. Originally from Northern California, Paul has been in Texas now for more than 20 years and became a San Antonio resident in 2011. Paul loves the Texas outdoors and in his free time you can find him on the golf course or at the beach with his wife and two daughters.