Our Team

We’re a team of chemists, data scientists, and food experts working together on one passion: food. We all want to know what’s inside what we’re eating and we’re working together to figure it out.

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BRENT OVERCASH

Co-founder, Chief Executive Officer
Brent brings a life-long passion for data that demystifies everyday problems and removes uncertainty from decision-making. As a result, his entire career has been focused on using the power of data and analytics to solve real-world challenges like nutrition.

Over the past decade he has envisioned a world where there is no need for nutritional labels, no brand messaging, no trickery – just food that can tell you exactly what it is and how good it is through the power of its own data. Brent has brought together a wide spectrum of educational institutions, hi-tech companies and scientists to collaborate and solve this problem. Together they have created the tools and information that help anyone understand the quality and value of the food they are buying so that they can make their own informed choices.

Brent is an avid bass player, cyclist and obsessive gadgeteer who brings a fervency for creative technologies that can help improve health and lives.

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GREG SHEWMAKER

Co-founder, Chief Commercial Officer
One day Greg asked the questions “what’s in my food?” and “what’s it doing to me/my family?” When the search for answers simply led to more questions, Greg decided to dedicate his life to understanding food and our food systems.

Greg was the Founder of Food+Future, a multi-year exploration into the future of food with Target, IDEO, MIT and Intel. He also started two other international companies and was the Chief Merchant at the #2 e-commerce company in the world.

His personal commitment to complete food transparency drives his efforts at TeakOrigin. Greg works with our partners around the globe to scale our efforts in ways that will help inform and enable better food decisions for everyone.

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ELLEN MISEO, PhD

Chief Scientist
Ellen V. Miseo holds a Ph. D in Physical Chemistry and concentrated on optical spectroscopy and instrument development. Her primary interest is in new applications of spectroscopic and imaging techniques. She has been involved in many instrument development programs that were the result of foreseeing customer trends and adapting the technology to support the trends. At TeakOrigin she has the opportunity to combine her interests in food and spectroscopy!

Dr. Miseo has been elected to a number of leadership positions within professional scientific societies related to spectroscopy including the Society for Applied Spectroscopy and the Coblentz Society.

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YAGIZ SUTCU, PhD

Data Director
Yagiz heads up TeakOrigin’s Data Analytics team with his expertise in signal processing, machine learning and algorithm development. He builds mathematical models and helps develop the common language of food for everyone.

Yagiz was born in Izmir, Turkey and received his Ph. D degree in Electrical & Computer Engineering from NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering in June 2009. He is passionate about soccer, loves to cook and to play guitar (although not at the same time!)

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BENJAMIN BIRD, PhD

Data Analytics
Ben has a wealth of knowledge in the use of vibrational spectroscopy and imaging to characterize and fingerprint biological samples. He supports the Data Analytics team using his experience of advanced signal processing, chemometrics and machine learning to help elucidate salient spectroscopic features that correlate with the nutritional profile of foods.

Ben was born in London, England and received his PhD in Chemistry from Nottingham University (Nottingham, UK). He continued his research using label-free spectroscopic techniques to study biological materials at Northeastern University (Boston, USA). He has published over 40 papers, contributed to multiple book chapters, won multiple awards, and is an inventor on multiple patents in the field of spectroscopic imaging. Ben is passionate about Chelsea football club, Indian food and his family.

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HILARY CUNNINGHAM, MS

Product Director
Hilary’s personal mission is to improve the quality of the food we grow, buy, and eat. After spending years studying food and food systems, she realized there was a huge opportunity to leverage data-driven, yet human-centered products to build a better, more transparent food system. As Product Director, Hilary is responsible for making TeakOrigin’s never-before-seen data & technology valuable to customers.

Hilary holds an M.S. in Nutrition Science & Policy from Tufts University and B.A. in Architecture from Middlebury College. When not in the digital world, Hilary can be found in the physical world of Vermont, growing food, making sourdough bread, and hiking with her Bernese Mountain dog

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MICHELLE SANFORD

Analytical Scientist
Michelle is an Analytical Scientist assisting the team with the characterization of foods and the optimization of analytical methods using wet lab techniques and spectroscopy. She participates in the generation of chemical datasets on food. With a B.S. in Chemistry from Simmons University, Michelle brings her hunger for insight and clarity, plus her love for food to support TeakOrigin’s mission of true transparency into what we eat. She is a member of the American Chemical Society.

Outside of the lab, Michelle is a social butterfly that flutters towards all things fun. She is an artist and songwriter with accolades from ASCAP. On top of all that, she is an electrifying dancer (maybe not electrifying, but she does have some pretty good moves).

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JAMES RYAN

Senior Chemist – Team Lead
James was drawn to TeakOrigin by the opportunity to combine his passions for food and science to promote a greater understanding of what we eat everyday. As a Senior Chemist specializing in Chromatography, he contributes to method development and analyte profiling. In addition to analyzing food samples via wet chemistry and spectroscopy, James is the resident Excel wizard.

He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tufts University and has experience in software development and catalysis research. James is an avid traveler, foodie, and wine enthusiast.

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DAN ACCETTA

Technical Product Manager,  Data Science
At TeakOrigin, Dan developed a passion for helping consumers understand the food they buy and eat. Dan uses his engineering experience to create solutions that enable TeakOrigin to bring transparency to food. He aids in the technical build of devices, software, data modeling, and data management. Additionally, Dan is dedicated to working with consumers to improve their understanding of TeakOrigin’s technology.

Dan is an Engineer-in-Training at the MA Society of Professional Engineers and received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Northeastern University

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KOPILA KOIRALA

Field Collection
Kopila is TeakOrigin’s Boston based Field Collection Technician. Kopila runs the acquisition of all spectral and produce market data from Boston area grocers.

Kopila has always been curious about science, and decided to pursue her interests in biology and chemistry in a professional capacity. Kopila holds an Associate’s Degree in Business Management and Marketing from Tribhuvan University, as well as a JAS Certificate in Biomedical Science from Bunker Hill Community College. Outside of TeakOrigin, Kopila enjoys spending time with her daughters and traveling with family.