Meet the Upstart Works Team | Who We Are - UpstartWorks

Our Executive Superheroes

Rohan Thambrahalli
Founder and President
Keep the main thing the main thing.

Founder and President of UpstartWorks, Rohan Thambrahalli has made it his goal to develop a culture that embodies the builder who delivers best-in-class value to customers and partners. UpstartWorks is Rohan’s greatest personal and professional achievement, it was his vision from the beginning to start a company that could provide vendors the reach, technology, scale, and capabilities to compete with the best brands in the world.

Rohan holds a bachelor’s degree in MIS and Economics from Depaul University. In his free time, Rohan enjoys reading business journals and articles.

Melonie Carnegie
CEO

Melonie Carnegie, MBA is a visionary, results driven sales executive with outstanding business results. Melonie excels in B2B Go-to-Market Strategy, PL management, and Building Exception Sales Organizations to deliver exponential growth within Automotive, MRO, and Industrial Distribution. She has an exceptional track record of building cross-functional internal relationships to facilitate high quality customer experiences.

Justin McMillan
Chief Operating Officer
Culture is the most important part of a business, and a good team can overcome any obstacle.

Justin McMillan is our Chief Operating Officer responsible for managing the overall business with a focus on vendor operational performance enhancement. He also oversees Amazon advertising consultation and campaign management. During his time at UpstartWorks, Justin has been recognized as a standout for ensuring the live status for in-network and direct fulfillment purchase orders, during a period of aggressive change for Amazon. Where other vendors struggled, Justin protected all of our vendors and exceeded delivery expectations during a time of question and uncertainty.

Justin holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Depaul University. Outside of work, Justin is a self-proclaimed outdoorsman and is constantly looking for an excuse to get as far North into the wilderness as possible.

 Justin’s view on UpstartWorks

“UpstartWorks was created to be more than a single software, platform, or solution company. We consider ourselves a full-service shop and take great pride in addressing every client issue as if it was our own. Today’s form of distribution is a convoluted and over-penetrated space. Brand owners are struggling to manage their sales channels and eCom tends to funnel a specific value add from weak distribution partners. It takes a comprehensive strategy for all channels to manage it effectively and while eCom is often just a piece of the overall business, it requires more engagement, more software, and more expertise to manage effectively; not only to grow it, but to protect respectable channel partners as well.”

Vikram Bhatia
GM – Asia & Middle East
Don’t worry about failure. You only have to be right once. – Drew Houston

Vikram has over 2 decades of rich & extensive experience entailing Acquisition, Customer Experience, Stakeholder & Relationship Management, Operations, Business Transformation, Program Management, Automation & Digitization, etc.

 

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Commerce, has completed the General Management Program from the Indian Institute of Management – Ahmedabad (IIM), and holds a Certified Manager accreditation from Harvard Business Publishing.

 

Vikram is an avid wildlife and nature enthusiast, loves music (mostly Indian!), and likes to spend his spare time with his pet dog or going out with friends for fishing, eating, and drinking beer. He is born and brought up in Mumbai, India, but has been living and working in Dubai for the last 15 years.

Ryan Barron
Creative Director
Discomfort provokes growth

Ryan Barron is our Creative Director who oversees all creative content efforts as they satisfy the requirements of the Amazon platform. Ryan has earned the “Best-in-class Content” Award in 2018 on behalf of Adesso Home, in the Amazon Home Category.

Ryan holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Amongst many of his talents, Ryan is also a vocalist in the Chicago-based Bill Pollack Orchestra.

 Ryan’s view on UpstartWorks

“UpstartWorks is living, breathing proof that people can accomplish anything as long as they’re willing to put in the work. What began as an idea has now become an accomplished and quickly growing business well positioned to continue guiding partners through new challenges and unprecedented trends. The people at the core of UpstartWorks not only understand what the bottom line is, they are also willing to do the heavy lifting required to stay well above it. ”

Erin Usher
Director of Client Management
Don’t wait for opportunity. Create it.

Erin Usher is our Director of Client Management who manages all aspects of Vendor account activity on Amazon. Erin was a key member in securing the marketing strategy and launch of the OV LED Headlamp, Amazon’s #1 selling item.

Erin holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In addition to her contributions at UpstartWorks, Erin is a practiced Yogi and believes in mental and physical wellness.

 Erin’s view on UpstartWorks

“The eCommerce market moves quickly and is always changing. UpstartWorks does more than just keep up in a fast environment. We stay ahead and set the pace. I appreciate the challenge of solving for tomorrow’s problems and am lucky to work with a team of people who have the agility and work ethic to make a change.”

Hannah Frentzel
Brand Portfolio Manager
“The road to success is always under construction.” - Lily Tomlin
Hannah Frentzel is our Brand Portfolio Manager. Hannah is responsible for leading vendor strategic planning meetings, creating world-class marketing executions, and providing detailed reporting and analysis to grow our vendor’s traffic, conversion and brand awareness. Her past experience in retail logistics helps Hannah approach her role with an effective combination of critical thinking and hands-on problem solving.
Hannah holds a Bachelor Of Science in Business Management and Marketing from Truman University. When she isn’t in the office, she enjoys the outdoors, playing guitar and cooking breakfast.
Valerie Browne
Brand Portfolio Manager
Learning never exhausts the mind - Leonardo DaVinci

Valerie Browne is our Brand Portfolio Manager and is responsible for helping vendors manage and grow their business through e-commerce platforms. Her previous roles within e-commerce include two account management positions at Groupon. As a business professional and an artist, she is always seeking to bridge the analytical with creativity and is dedicated to using both data analytics and content to help our vendors and team achieve excellence. Valerie holds a Bachelor in Fine Arts degree with a focus in painting and studio arts from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. When not in the office, Valerie enjoys painting, visiting museums, and photographing her travels with her fiancé.

Maeve Swanberg
Social Media Coordinator
Big ideas have small beginnings

Maeve Swanberg is our Social Media Coordinator responsible for growing our brand presence through UpstartWorks’ social media channels and PR activities. Maeve holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication, Public Relations, and a minor in Marketing from the University of Dayton. Outside of work, Maeve enjoys traveling and is always looking for her next adventure.

Sylvia Wtorkowski
Brand Portfolio Manager
Be stronger than your strongest excuse

Sylvia Wtorkowski is our Brand Portfolio Manager. Sylvia utilizes project management and analytical skills to lead strategic marketing meetings for various vendors. She is not afraid to look outside of the box to streamline brand presence and increase conversion to yield increased revenue growth.

Sylvia holds a Bachelor of Science in Marketing: Sales Leadership from DePaul University, and has previous experience working in the e-commerce sector at Groupon. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, watching documentaries and is currently learning how to play the ukulele.