Meet EarlySense – Ralph Stohn

Ralph Stohn, 

VP of Research & Development

Tell me about your role and what you do at EarlySense?

As VP of Research & Development at EarlySense, I am responsible for leading our technology and R&D teams. The team of R&D directors report to me, and our responsibility includes the design and creation of algorithms, the sensor, hardware, engineering, software, data science, system engineering and V&V. My role includes collaborating with all functions in the company, to ensure we develop quality products, according to market needs, aligned with the budget, and on time.

When and why did you join EarlySense?

I was a freelancer and an entrepreneur. I developed iPhone apps for startups and projects that I initiated with partners, and I also developed many first versions of iPhone apps for other startups. I started to work with EarlySense in 2013 and developed the first EarlySense app that connected to the under-the-mattress sensor. The app ran the algorithms to process the sensor signals, and it showed the vital signs, heart rate respiratory rate and movement. It was exciting, and the company leadership was thrilled to see the product run on an iPhone.

In 2016 I joined EarlySense as an employee, and my initial role was a mobile software developer in the iOS Team. I joined because I liked the people I had worked with in the company – people with values – and EarlySense was a great customer with a challenging product that needed to be further developed. 

What do you enjoy most about your role?

We have many different development disciplines in EarlySense. Our software, hardware, algorithms, data science, signal processing and our daily work involve many regulatory aspects. Combining these fields and taking everything into consideration to build a medical product is both a complicated and satisfying process. In each field we have highly qualified and experienced people who are eager to build new products, eager to learn and improve, and I’m thrilled to lead, influence and work with these people every day to engage the process that leads to a high-quality medical product.

What do you enjoy most about working in Med Tech?

I really like the positive impact we have on people’s lives when they are at their most vulnerable. I get up in the morning, and I know that we are doing something meaningful for people.

During my career, I worked in telecommunications, cyber security, e-commerce and other industries. Nothing compares to building a product that saves lives. The stories we got from our customers about patients that are still with us because of our technology reminds me every day of the true meaning of our work. 

What has been your biggest learning experience since starting at EarlySense?

Personally, thanks to my managers I developed my professional skills and learned a lot about myself and my capabilities. At every position I had at EarlySense I learned that everything looks different when you look at it from a different angle. I learned to work closely with the people I managed, and I learned that regulatory processes (if implemented correctly) improve product quality.

What do you like to do outside of work – what are your passions?

I run about 50km a week. I’m preparing for a half marathon. I get up at 4:30 AM 3 times a week so I can go running before work. I like to take walks with my children, to talk and listen to them.

I read history books (20th century European history is especially interesting to me). I follow the English Premier league closely. I’ve been a Tottenham Hotspur fan since I was 7 years old, and occasionally I travel with one of my children to London to watch them play.