Norman Winarksy has joined Relay Ventures as its first-ever executive in residence (EIR), bringing his extensive experience as the former president of famed research lab SRI International to the Canada-based venture firm. In his new capacity, he’ll advise entrepreneurs in the portfolio companies, while also offering assistance to Relay Ventures’ investment team.
For more than 14 years, he helmed SRI’s venture arm, overseeing development of some of the technology industry’s most interesting products, such as Tempo AI, Nuance, Initiative Surgical, and more. He parted ways with the research institute in August 2015, and since that time has been a lecturer at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, while also holding advisory board seats in several companies, including Kasisto and Health2047.
Winarsky is recognized for being one of the cofounders of the Siri personal assistant, which Apple acquired for its iOS devices.
He also co-authored a book called “If You Really Want To Change The World,” which focuses on entrepreneurship and innovation and draws on his own endeavors and other moonshot-like projects.
Winarsky has been a venture advisor for Relay Ventures since February 2014.
Although based in Canada, Relay Ventures does have a presence in the San Francisco Bay Area. The company was founded in 2008 by Kevin Talbot and John Albright and invests in early-stage mobile startups, including Kiip, Appcelerator, Luma, Tempo AI, Rally.org, and Scanadu. Winarsky will be working out of the firm’s Sand Hill Road office in Menlo Park, Calif.