John Helm

Charlotte, NC

John Helm is Chief Digital Officer at

Helm is a co-founder and former CTO of OMNI Retail Group, a digital library science-based start-up focused on interactive, goal-based product discovery.

Prior to OMNI, Helm was the Principal of JHelm Associates, LLC, a business results consultancy. Previously, Helm was the Vice President of Engineering and Chief Technology Officer of and CTO of Before Drugstore, Helm was a founding partner of Umaxon, a company specializing in system and software architecture, design, implementation, testing, and maintenance. Before Umaxon, Helm had several senior management positions at Merrill Lynch, including Head of Architecture; COO of Global Messaging, Collaboration Services and Directory Services; and Chief Information Architect. While at Merrill Lynch, in 2003 one of Helm's Open Source projects garnered a CIO Magazine "Resourceful 100 Award"; later he was tapped to rebuild and update the company's global messaging and directory infrastructures following the September 11 terrorist attack. Prior to Merrill Lynch, Helm held key technology management positions at Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.

Other experience include a variety of positions in academia and in the nonprofit and public sectors. Helm was on the faculty in the Department of Applied Physics at Columbia University, a Fellow at the National Academy of Engineering, and the Director of Computer Services at the American Health Foundation, where he responsible for the management of epidemiological databases and biostatistics software. Currently, Helm is an advisory board member for University of Washington Agile and ClLoud Computing Certificate Programs.

Helm holds a Ph.D. in Applied Physics, a master's in Nuclear Engineering, and a bachelor's degree in Applied Chemistry from Columbia University.