Mr. Govender is Director, Artificial Intelligence at Facebook, where he focuses on advancing AI Research and bringing breakthroughs in AI to Facebook products (Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, etc). Prior to Facebook, Mr. Govender held roles at various technology companies. He was Chief Product and Technology Officer at Tumblr, where he oversaw product management, data science, and engineering; Vice President of Product Innovation at Verizon Media, where he drove forward product innovation and excellence across Verizon’s portfolio of internet brands (Yahoo, AOL, etc); and a product and engineering leader at Amazon Alexa, where he was part of the small team that launched the original Amazon Echo. Prior to his career in the US, Mr. Govender held positions at a number of major Canadian technology, media and telecom companies.
Outside of his core duties, Mr. Govender is an active participant in the technology speaking circuit; past highlights include interviewing with Oprah Winfrey, SXSW, Variety Entertainment and various international trade delegations.
Mr. Govender earned his Bachelor of Applied Science and Engineering degree from the University of Toronto with a specialization in Nanotechnology. He subsequently earned his MBA from INSEAD (France/Singapore).
Mr Govender was born in South Africa. He immigrated to Canada at 15, and spent over 14 years in Toronto. He later immigrated to the US, and is currently residing in New York with his wife.