2013 Distinguished achievement award: Roy Thiele-Sardiña

// Electrical & Computer Engineering

Tags: alumni, ECE E-Day, Engineers' Day, Roy Thiele-Sardiña

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thiele-sardina-roy-100pxWRoy A. Thiele-Sardiña 
Managing Partner
HighBAR Partners
BSECE ’82
Menlo Park, California

Known for his infectious enthusiasm and passion for technology entrepreneurship, Roy Thiele-Sardiña has parlayed more than three decades of industry experience into helping young technology startup companies grow and thrive.

Thiele-Sardiña, who earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering in 1982, launched the Palo Alto, California-based HighBAR Partners in 1995 with Sun Microsystems co-founders Bill Joy and Andreas Bechtolsheim (the name BAR is an acronym for Bill, Andy and Roy). Tapping Thiele-Sardiña’s professional experience, HighBAR specializes in infrastructure investments in the computer storage and security industries.

From 2003 to 2007, Thiele-Sardiña was managing partner at Steelpoint Capital, an investment firm with assets exceeding $500 million that focused on investments in storage and data security.

His leadership in the venture investment world draws from his success as an operating executive for a number of information technology companies. He co-founded Ingrian Networks, a major provider of network data privacy solutions. Its eventual acquisition by SafeNet helped propel that parent company to global leadership in data protection and software rights solutions.

Thiele-Sardiña was CEO and co-founder of Tasmania Networks, a successful network caching software company that was ultimately acquired by Cisco Systems. At that time, Tasmania Networks had 10 UW-Madison graduates among its 20 employees. Thiele-Sardiña also served on the founding management team for Brocade Communications, which is the leading supplier of backbone infrastructure for data center storage.

From 1985 to 1995, Thiele-Sardiña held a number of positions at Sun Microsystems, starting as an account executive and eventually rising to become director of international sales and later director of corporate development in the Office of the Chairman. Early in his Sun career he helped launch Sun’s telecommunications business and grew it to 10 percent of Sun’s global revenue.

He is an enthusiastic supporter of his alma mater, especially around technology entrepreneurship. He has served as a judge for the annual NEST student software competition, and has provided valuable advice to students seeking to commercialize their ideas. He also led a panel of Silicon Valley UW-Madison alumni during the 2013 Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference. In 2013, he joined the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering advisory board.

In addition to his bachelor’s degree from UW-Madison, Thiele-Sardiña also earned his MBA from New York University in 1989.