Data Science Alliance:

DSA catalyzes the power of data and data experts to tackle enduring community and business challenges.  We advance the practice of data science, democratize access to information and build public trust through problem solving.

Established in 2020 in San Diego - the cradle of data science’s earliest success stories - DSA is building a research, education and industry epicenter to revolutionize the practice of data science worldwide.




Taner Halıcıoğlu


Data scientist, startup pioneer and DSA founder Taner Halicioglu has always been fluent in the practical and the visionary.  To solve intractable problems, he embraces both. Taner practiced the art of data science before it had a name - leveraging data in concert with his skills as a software developer and systems engineer to help tech giants Cisco, LoudCloud and eBay scale their capacity to match their goals. He continued to turn founders’ visions into realities when he joined Facebook as its first full time employee.

Dr. Ilkay Altintas


Dr. Ilkay Altintas earned the moniker “Lady of Fire” for her groundbreaking work using real time data to predict and contain wildfires.  However, as a data scientist it’s hardly the first thing she’s set ablaze. At UCSD, as Chief Data Science Officer of the San Diego Supercomputer Center, and Founder and Director of the Workflows for Data Science (WoRDs) Center, Ilkay’s research has performed drug testing simulations to isolate genes to fight cancer, created tools being used to build the world’s first commercial scale fusion reactor and designed modular workflows to analyze the human biome.

Dr. Bradley Voytek


Before Dr. Bradley Voytek was a respected UCSD Professor and neuroscientist, he was a renegade data scientist revolutionizing transportation at Uber. Brought in to bring direction to the chaos at the nascent startup, he helped Uber use data to change how we move through cities worldwide. Following his exit, Brad dusted off his PhD in Neuroscience from UC Berkeley determined to bring a data scientist’s acumen to traditional research. By aggregating and examining the data of fellow neuroscientists, his award winning research has isolated neural activity critical to understanding cognition and disease.

Nedim Halıcıoğlu


Not many people who understand cognitive neuroscience become attorneys, and not many attorneys become founders. Nedim Halicioglu has defied the odds. Comfortable wearing both the hats of investor and entrepreneur, Ned has founded several startups, and evaluated the prospects of hundreds more. With the head of a researcher and the heart of a founder, Ned has an eye for finding and elevating talent, and brings an attorney’s acuity to the companies he shepherds. 

Andy White

Andy White isn’t afraid of an outrageous goal and understands the power of community in achieving it.  In 2012 when he was asked by local business leaders to help reinvigorate downtown Las Vegas by catalyzing a startup ecosystem, he didn’t hesitate.  As a founding partner of the VegasTechFund, Andy saw past the empty storefronts and the fading glitter of Fremont Street to help develop a community of tech innovation, talent and investment that put Las Vegas on the startup map. 

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Bahija Humphrey​, CEO

Bahija Humphrey is the leader you call when you have an audacious vision and no guiding precedent.  Recruited by the Mayor of San Diego to serve as Director of the City's Performance and Analytics Department, Bahija’s work was honored with the prestigious Bloomberg What Works Cities Award for using data to enhance government effectiveness. The enemy of potholes, graffiti and inefficiency, she led a team of data experts to operationalize “Connected City” objectives to make municipal services more responsive. 

Alex Bates, CTO

Alex Bates was drawn into the world of technology because it was rebellious. From hacking schematics from the early Internet as an 80's kid, to publishing a computational solution to diagnose early stage glaucoma as an undergraduate, Alex has combined data and industriousness to innovate. After applying analytics on some of the world’s largest data warehouses at Teradata, Alex was co-founder and CTO of Mtell, acquired by AspenTech in 2016.

James Kelly, CFO

For the past decade, James Kelly has brought an accountant’s exactitude and an entrepreneur’s eye for innovation to his work for early stage technology companies. These startups have sought James out for his expertise in scaling operations and building successful teams. His background in finance and appreciation of the power of data science was instrumental at Square Inc. where he led the Finance and Capital Teams.

Gina Harris, Secretary 

When Gina Harris says she’s managed a circus, it isn’t a metaphor.  She was the resident stage manager for the San Diego based Lindley Lopez Circus for half a decade. During her tenure, she created organizational structures, managed schedules and logistics, and provided support for the performers. Gina’s career is grounded in creating systems that facilitate the success of the leaders around her, and in anticipating and executing the needs of the organizations she serves.

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