Vida Williams Breathes New Life into Data at SingleStone

Announcing a major investment in the strategic buildout of our Data practice

Usually, an announcement of this level includes news of a merger or acquisition. For us, that acquisition is in the form of an individual: data scientist, Vida Williams.

Our commitment to Data is found in our enlisting of Vida, who, after years of being recruited and preferring to not “don a label,” has agreed to join SingleStone as our first-ever Data & Machine Learning Solution Lead. She has the expertise we were ready to hire and has the vision to help build and shape this important new practice for our team. 

Is it serendipity that Vida means Life? She is the living, breathing symbol of SingleStone’s deeper move into Data, Machine Learning, and Advanced Applied Analytics (AAA). Clients have questions about data, and they are beginning to explore analytical approaches that leverage technology in a much bigger way. 

At the simplest level: Every organization has data – often massive amounts of it – but most have a hard time finding meaningful insights and using data to answer critical questions or learn better ways of doing business. Using Advanced Applied Analytics, we can help clients in the C-suite make better, more informed business decisions.

As technologists, we also recognize that data can sometimes be “cold” and, well, heavy on numbers and algorithms. Vida brings a very human perspective with the belief that “data is magic.” Her unique abilities help often non-technical, C-suite leaders understand how data can help them innovate their product or service offerings, build better and more authentic relationships with customers, and improve business outcomes through refined measures of success.

The appetite for Data and Machine Learning initiatives is strong and rapidly growing, and a deeper move into this space makes strategic sense for us. With Vida’s leadership, our strong technical expertise, and a potentially disruptive view on data, we are uniquely positioned to meet the demand and support client needs.

We view data as an asset for your company, one that can help you innovate, deliver better products and services, and engage your audiences more meaningfully.

More about Vida

Degree from Duke University in hand, Vida entered the workforce as a technical writer and quickly found her calling in technology and data. Her professional background and experience is a heady mix of core IT skills, including data architecture and engineering, software design, programming and implementation, as well as program management, and executive engagement and consulting.

Her background is about:

  • Social enterprise consulting: She co-founded social enterprise consulting firm, The Axis Partners, serving mission-driven organizations in the areas of data architecture, process engineering and data sciences.
  • Enterprise organizations: She expanded an international corporate startup executive team, and supported the IT enterprise construction of local biotech company Health Diagnostic Laboratory in 2011.
  • Media: She was Richmond.com’s chief technology officer in the late 1990s. She also helped design and launch National Public Radio’s open-source catalog in the early 2000s.
  • Inclusion: Vida is deeply committed to the impact of inclusive points of view in innovation and the impact on social justice, speaking broadly at conferences such as Open Source & Software Development (OSCON) and at The White House.
  • Involvement: Vida sits on several boards, including Podium RVA and CodeVA. Those nonprofits encourage writing and computer engineering, respectively, for Richmond youth. Additionally, she founded Hacktastic and the Innovation Education Project to provide urban youth access to the world of entrepreneurial innovation.
  • Innovation: At the VCU da Vinci Center, she serves as Innovator in Residence, guiding budding entrepreneurs through special projects that advance innovation for social good.
  • Coaching: As founder of GirlFit!, she works with youth girls on wellness, fitness, athletics and team sports.

Hear Vida in her own words at TEDx RVA in 2017 on the concept of “Citizen Data.”

“The prevailing theme in my career is to map data elements into actionable information for executive-level decision-making,” Vida says. “I was looking for an organization to partner with me in challenging the status quo in the Data industry. I found that SingleStone recognizes the potential in more of the human, magical elements of Data, and what Data can do to achieve a business goal.”

And perhaps importantly: Vida is natural fit with our team, our philosophy, and our culture. You’ll enjoy working with her as much as we do. We welcome her to the team.

See Vida at Tom Tom!

Catch Vida on April 11 at the Tom Tom Summit & Festival in Charlottesville and its Applied Machine Learning Conference. This day-long event features a who’s who of researchers, entrepreneurs, and writers, as well as numerous opportunities for networking and recruitment at mixers, power lunches, and afterparties, all on the Downtown Mall. 

If your organization is interested in how data can make your business the best in can be, SingleStone can conduct assessments of your organization’s maturity and readiness for Advanced Applied Analytics. Contact us to learn more.