Over the last year or so, we’ve been assembling a “new” management team here at Palisade as part of our strategy to take the company to new levels. I say “new” in quotes because most (but not all) of the team are Palisade veterans. We’ve restructured responsibilities and put systems in place to support a globally-focused mission of elevating the quality of decision-making in sectors around the world. Meet the team!
Erik Westwig, Director of Software Development
Erik Westwig has worked in software development at Palisade for nearly 25 years, and leads all the company’s core product software development efforts.
Erik has long been a key architect behind Palisade’s flagship product @RISK, which performs Monte Carlo simulation and optimization in Microsoft Excel. Having written large portions of the @RISK code directly, Erik has also led development teams throughout the company’s history. In addition to @RISK, he has spearheaded the development of PrecisionTree, Palisade’s decision analysis add-in to Excel, as well as coordinated production of the company’s fully integrated DecisionTools Suite of analytical tools.
Erik enjoys heavy metal and Broadway show tunes.
Denise Castellot, Vice President of Global Sales
Denise Castellot has managed sales teams at Palisade for over 12 years, and now leads the company’s expansion efforts all over the world.
Denise began at Palisade focusing on Latin America. Under her leadership, the company presence in both Brazil and the rest of Latin America grew exponentially. She has also led teams in Asia-Pacific and the US. Having sold directly into these markets herself, Denise brings a firm understanding of market challenges as well as a hands-on management style to the role. As VP of Global Sales, she is a unifying force for the company’s distributed global team, applying best practices and scaling outreach efforts in exciting new ways.
When not spreading the gospel of risk management, Denise can be found galloping through the countryside on one of her horses.
Scott Burch, Vice President of Finance
Scott Burch joined our team in April 2019 and develops and executes innovate new financial strategies that directly impact the bottom line.
Scott’s remit includes financial engineering, systems improvements, analytics and cash management, all of which further enable the company to achieve its strategic goals of providing the best possible decision-making solutions to Fortune 500 professionals worldwide. Scott also works closely with Palisade’s equity partner Thompson Street Capital Partners to leverage their experience and expertise.
Prior to Palisade, Scott was corporate accounting manager for PAR Technologies, controller at XPO Logistics, and Vice President at Tompkins Financial Corporation. Scott spends his downtime keeping his dog from eating the paneling off the walls of his house.
Shannon Kelly, Director of Marketing
Shannon Kelly has worked in marketing at Palisade for over 20 years, and currently leads the company’s branding, outreach, and demand generation efforts globally.
Shannon began as the company’s graphic designer and quickly became the webmaster as well. Over the years, she has led multiple re-branding efforts, product launch campaigns, and web site overhauls. She and her team have produced materials and campaigns in eight different languages. Shannon launched and oversees Palisade’s global events series, which includes conferences, workshops, and industry exhibitions all over the world. The two-day Palisade Risk Conference has become the leading event of its kind in the risk decision-analysis space. She is also responsible for Palisade’s marketing analytics efforts, helping to target our messaging and content to be relevant and useful for our customers. She and her team are focused on understanding the customer’s journey, in order to build and nurture customer relationships that last for years.
When not directing global marketing, Shannon can be found on the dog agility circuit.
Julie Ellis-Grove, Director of Accounting
Julie Ellis-Grove has worked in accounting at Palisade for six years, and is responsible for the smooth operation of the company’s receivables, payables, payroll, cash, tax, and other functions.
Over the years, Julie has revamped AP and AR processes, set up new reporting systems, and managed cash and tax functions in four different countries. More recently she led the diligence effort during Palisade’s capital restructure with Palisade’s private equity partners Thompson Street Capital Partners. Among her latest challenges is co-leading an initiative to upgrade and overhaul Palisade’s ERP and accounting software systems, which will provide the company with greater efficiencies and real-time reporting like never before.
If that weren’t enough to keep her busy, at 6:00am most mornings Julie can be found at CrossFit.
Gustavo Vinueza, Director of Custom Solutions
Gustavo Vinueza has worked in the consulting, training, and custom development area of Palisade for nine years, and is currently responsible for scoping and producing customized software solutions for Fortune 500 companies around the world.
During his tenure, Gustavo has leveraged his technical and financial background to understand the varied and unique needs of customers in many different industries to better formulate solutions tailored for each client. Having started by providing training classes and developing spreadsheet models for clients, Gustavo has since grown to lead a team of consultants and programmers whose mission is to create robust, bespoke software solutions based on Palisade’s @RISK and DecisionTools technologies. To date, the Custom Solutions team has helped Fortune 500 clients in manufacturing, engineering, defense, utilities, banking, energy, and many other sectors.
Gustavo is an active street runner and his goal is to, one day, run a marathon.
Randy Heffernan, CEO
That’s me – for over 20 years, I’ve worked in nearly every department at Palisade, including sales, marketing, operations, and development. Working closely with sales and product teams, I’ve had the opportunity to lead product launches, enter new markets, and establish Palisade offices in multiple new countries. During that time, the company has quadrupled in size and expanded its reach to become the dominant force in modern analytical decision-making and thought leadership.
My focus now is to take Palisade to the next level in its 30+ year history. Building on a marketing-leading product and a world-class sales force, our aim is to lay the foundation for the next generation of accessible, powerful spreadsheet-based analytics and to reach segments who don’t yet know the power these tools can bring.
Besides risk analytics, things that I think are fun include mountains, English history, and Star Trek.