Tech Moves: Gopuff hires Bezos’ former technical advisor; Meta engineering leader joins DoorDash

Maria Renz. (Gopuff photo)

— Maria Renz, former Amazon president and technical advisor to Jeff Bezos, joined Gopuff as senior vice president of North America.

Renz most recently served as executive vice president at fintech giant SoFi. She previously spent nearly two decades at Amazon as vice president, leading several groups, including Delivery Experience, and serving as CEO of Quidsi, an Amazon subsidiary.

Renz, who joined Amazon in 1999, became the first woman to become a technical advisor to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, a coveted role she held from 2015 to 2017.

Renz is the latest tech exec in Seattle to join Gopuff, an on-demand convenience store delivery service reportedly valued at $40 billion.

“Because of its relentless focus on customers and best-in-class delivery technology, Gopuff is leading the industry, redefining how consumers shop today and in the future,” Renz wrote in a LinkedIn post.

Liangxiao Zhu. (LinkedIn photo)

— Liangxiao Zhu, former technical leader at Microsoft and Meta, joined DoorDash as vice president of engineering.

Zhu started her career at Microsoft, where she worked as a senior engineer on Windows Phone, HoloLens and more. She then spent nearly a decade at Meta, most recently as a senior engineering director working on payment technology.

Zhu will lead new verticals, such as supermarket and convenience store giant DoorDash, which went public in 2020. The company reported revenue of $1.3 billion in the fourth quarter of last year.

DoorDash opened an engineering firm in Seattle in 2020.

Deidre Boulware. (sheet photo)

— Deidre Boulware, formerly vice president at American Century Investments, will join Leafly as Chief People Officer.

Boulware has more than two decades of leadership experience in human resources, having previously held positions with US Pharmacopeia, Willis Towers Watson, Capital One, Ally Financial and Wachovia Securities.

She joins Leafly just months after the Seattle company went public through a SPAC merger. Founded in 2010, Leafly’s online marketplace allows customers to purchase and select cannabis products from licensed retailers.

The startup also serves as an educational resource. The platform has more than 125 million annual visitors and the company generated revenue of $36 million in 2020, with projected year-over-year growth of 19% in 2021 and revenue of $151 million in 2024.

Other personnel changes in the technology sector in the Pacific Northwest:

Paul Ramsey, chief executive officer of UW Medicine, announced his retirement on July 31. Timothy Dellit, chief medical officer, will serve as the interim CEO for the next two years. Michelle Briscoe, former president of Brooks Applied Labs, joined Seattle startup Talus Bio as chief operating officer. Brian Adams, former leader at Zulily and head of portfolio at Amazon’s Alexa Fund, joined FLYR Labs as head of business development. Miyuki Jane Pinckard, co-founder of Story Kitchen Studio, joined Xbox as global portfolio director. Ken Barrett and Scott Fabro joined Seattle startup Arzeda as chief business officer and senior vice president of food Ingredients, respectively. dr. Amy Snover, director of the University of Washington Climate Impacts Group, will retire on June 15. Sean Ellis was appointed to the advisory board of Seattle-based startup Upfocus.

GeekWire editor-in-chief Taylor Soper contributed to this story.

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