Leadership Team Bios

Gregory M. Quist, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Greg Quist is the Co-Founder, President and CEO of SmartCover, leading the strategic direction and operations of the company. A long-time member of the water community, Greg was elected to the Rincon del Diablo Municipal Water District Board of Directors in 1990, where he has served for the past 30 years in various roles including President and Treasurer. Rincon’s Board appointed Greg to the San Diego County Water Authority Board in 1996 for 12 years where he led a coalition of seven agencies to achieve more than $1M per year in water delivery savings. With a background in the areas of metamaterials, numerical analysis, signal processing, pattern recognition, wireless communications, and system integration, Greg has worked as a technologist, manager and executive at Alcoa, McDonnell-Douglas, and SAIC and has founded and successfully spun off several high technology start-up companies, primarily in real-time detection and water technology. He holds 15 patents with several pending. Greg earned his undergraduate degree in astrophysics with a minor in economics from Yale College where he played football and baseball. He earned a Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has held top-level government clearances and is the former Chairman of the Urban Water Institute. In his rare free time he enjoys fly fishing, hiking, golf, basketball, and tennis. He currently resides in Escondido, CA.
David Drake
Chief Innovation Officer & Industry Icon

In 2005, David Drake and Dr. Gregory Quist formed Hadronex Inc., which has grown into SmartCover Systems. He has served as an elected Member of the Board of Directors of Rincon del Diablo Municipal Water District since 2006, spent nine years on the Board of Directors of the San Diego County Water Authority, and Chaired the City of Escondido Planning Commission. He was elected to the Executive Committee of the Association of California Water Agencies Joint Powers Insurance Authority (JPIA) where he Chairs the Workers Compensation Committee and is Vice-Chair of the California Water Insurance Fund, an investment arm of the JPIA. David is a graduate of the FBI Justice Department Citizen’s Academy and served as President of the San Diego FBI InfraGard Chapter. He holds 13 U.S. Patents and seven international patents with over 40 years of experience in radar systems, communications, software development, computer systems architecture and integration. He has done extensive work in data acquisition, signal processing, cryptography and image processing. He worked at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Oak Industries, Digital Equipment, SAIC, and Mitchell International as CIO. David earned his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Caltech, specializing in digital signal processing and optics. He has held several security clearances at NASA, Digital, and SmartCover. In 2017 he earned his Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California. His interests include water systems, astronomy, seismology, and amateur radio with an Extra Class license. David and his wife Ginny have lived in Escondido, CA since 1980.
David Rees
Chief Technology Officer

David Rees serves as Chief Technology Officer of SmartCover. He has over two decades of experience in the world of software development and engineering, with a focus on real-time online transaction processing, system architecture and user interface design and implementation. He first began working with SmartCover as a consultant in 2008 and joined the company full time in 2014. David has worked for companies and organizations such as Sportech, eBet Technologies, SAIC and EarthKAM where he led teams responsible for 24/7 online operations, high availability and performance under demanding customer load with an excellent track record of meeting performance requirements, minimizing downtime and while managing customer relations. He oversees the engineering department and actively supports all facets of product quality and value engineering, software development, user interface, systems engineering and management. A focus on continuous improvement on all engineering aspects results in improved processes and improved products with the highest efficiency and reliability. David earned his B.S. in Computer Science from University of California San Diego. He serves on the Board of the San Dieguito Youth Softball League and enjoys coaching his children’s softball and baseball teams.
Jim Crabtree
Chief Financial Officer

James Crabtree is a senior finance executive with over 20 years of experience in project development and corporate management in the water, power and environmental industries having led over $1.5B in direct investments in a variety of projects and companies. Jim has held various senior management positions including Managing Director of $170 million private equity fund, Vice President in G.E. Capital’s Structured Finance Group as well as JP Morgan Chase’s Global Structured Finance and U.S. Multinational Advisory Group. In addition to his transaction experience, Jim is skilled in business development and strategic planning. Jim has an M.B.A. in Finance and Accounting from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley.
Heather Towsley
Vice President of Marketing

Heather Towsley is an award-winning communications professional with extensive experience creating campaigns that build brand awareness, galvanize action and drive sales. In the past two decades she’s worked on marketing programs for various organizations including American Water, California Water Association, CH2M, Dimension Data, EPCOR Water, San Jose Water Company, NEC, Pure Technologies, Starbucks Coffee Company, and The GAP. Heather’s background includes experience with both local and federal government. She was appointed and served five years on the Parks and Recreation Commission for the City of San Marcos in the suburbs of San Diego and served over 10 years on Capitol Hill as a communications manager and spokesperson for a U.S. Congressman, NRCC, PhRMA, and a Presidential campaign. Her campaigns have received accolades from the Public Relations Society of America and International Association of Business Communicators. Heather earned her M.A. in Public Communications from American University and a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Arizona.
Ron Toten
Vice President of Operations

Ron Toten is an experienced leader in all aspects of operations and technology management. Acknowledged for combining business acumen and technology to develop and execute strategic business plans to improve the bottom line. Versatile, strong communicator with a solid work ethic and positive energy who leads the way toward building effective, world class organizations. Ron is responsible for overseeing SmartCover installations across North America. As a seasoned leader, his combination of engineering, technology, project management and customer service are unparalleled. He easily integrates with operations and is accessible to crews in the field to ensure the highest standards are met and the results are optimized -- whether the solution is targeting any of our applications such as blockages, high frequency cleaning, inflow and infiltration, or H2S. Ron oversees the field testing of our research and development projects and masterfully manages the intricacies of resource allocation, logistics, and traffic management. Prior to SmartCover, Ron has served in various leadership roles within the IT industry -- as a CTO for a software development company and management consultant -- providing strategic direction to enhance profitability, productivity and efficiency. He earned his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of California Davis. When he’s not hitting the little white ball, you can find Ron wrestling with his grandsons. Ron is based out of Orange County, CA.
Paris Neofotistos
Vice President of Sales

Paris is our Vice President of Sales. He is an experienced leader with more than 25 years in the industry with the last two decades focused on the municipal and industrial water and wastewater treatment markets. He oversees and manages our global sales operation with a network of regional managers and channel partners across North America. Accountable for driving and accelerating growth for the company, he focuses on strategic planning and developing the market for our innovative solutions. He works with end users to identify new applications and lends his engineering and technical expertise to our R&D team to support the development and commercialization of new solutions. Prior to joining SmartCover, Paris was VP of Sales at Axine Water Technologies where he led and built their commercial organization. He previously spent 14 years in various leadership roles at USP Technologies (Danaher subsidiary), an environmental services company, and 5 years at Infilco Degremont (Suez subsidiary). Paris earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech. He is an innovator and inventor holding two patents and has authored and presented many technical papers throughout his career. He currently resides outside Richmond, VA.