Igor Jablokov is the Founder and CEO of start-up Pryon Inc., an advanced AI company. He is also an Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR) for Blackstone NC, a regional initiative focused on accelerating the commercialization of academic research backed by the Blackstone Foundation, Duke University, NC State University, and The University of North Carolina. He was awarded Eisenhower and Truman National Security Fellowships to deepen collaboration between government and industry. Previously, Igor was founder and CEO of Yap, an institutionally-funded venture that pioneered cloud-based speech recognition. The startup was subsequently acquired by Amazon and is integrated into successful products such as the Alexa Voice Service platform, the Echo speaker, and the Fire TV set-top box. As Program Director of IBM’smultimodal research group, Igor led the team that invented the world’s first ever speech-enabled Web browser. With over two dozen patents issued and pending, he was named an industry luminary by Speech Technology Magazine and an outstanding engineering alumnus of Penn State. Igor holds a BS in Computer Engineering from Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from The University of North Carolina.