Jonathan Mosen Joins Aira as Vice President, Explorer Communications and Australasia
September 27th, 2018
Pictured here is Jonathan Mosen, Aira's VP of Explorer Communications and Australasia
Aira is pleased to announce that Jonathan Mosen will be joining Aira as Vice President, Explorer Communications and Australasia on October 15.
Jonathan’s name will be known to many current and potential Aira Explorers around the world. Internationally, he is known for founding and directing ACB Radio, directing Blindness Product Management at HumanWare, and holding various product management and communications roles at Freedom Scientific.
Through his own company, Mosen Consulting, Jonathan has produced many popular eBooks and audio tutorials and helped app developers make their apps accessible.
Jonathan’s many podcasts and radio shows have made his voice widely recognizable in the blind community.
In his home country of New Zealand, Jonathan has held leadership roles in the blindness sector and achieved legislative change through his advocacy work.
He is the recipient of the American Council of the Blind’s Vernon Henley Media Award, and the Beamish Memorial Medal for distinguished service from Blind Citizens New Zealand.
In his new role with Aira, Jonathan will take responsibility for expanding our services in Australia and New Zealand. He’ll also be looking after Explorer communications globally, strengthening existing initiatives and introducing new ones. For example, Aira will soon launch a comprehensive audio guide to our service, produced by Jonathan.
Jonathan told us why he is joining Aira.
You never know when something’s going to happen that takes your life in an unexpected direction. Through my podcast, I knew about Aira, and thought it sounded like impressive technology, but there’s a difference between intellectually understanding what Aira does and experiencing first-hand the impact it can have on your life.
I had that opportunity when I attended the CSUN conference in San Diego earlier this year. I’ve never used technology before that had such a profound emotional effect on me. I knew from the moment an agent was able to speedily get me through a crowded hotel to where I needed to be that my life would never be the same again. I also have a hearing impairment, so while I get out there and live life, noisy environments are difficult for me. Now, I’m negotiating huge airports, visiting unfamiliar places, and generally enjoying a much higher quality of life, all because of Aira.
The technology is exciting, and in future, we’re going to see some powerful convergence between artificial intelligence and the services provided already by Aira’s human agents. The arrival of 5G will usher in a new golden age for Aira. It’s exciting to be joining the company at a time when the best is yet to come.
But I wouldn’t give up the roles I have just because the technology is cool. What really attracts me to Aira is the team. I’ve had the opportunity to meet, interview, and work with many influential players in the blindness technology industry. There is no doubt in my mind that Aira’s CEO, Suman Kanuganti, has already earned the right to have his name included in the list of blindness technology greats such as Ted Henter, Dean Blazie, Russell Smith, Ray Kurzweil, Glen Gordon, Doug Geoffray, Dan Weirich and others. Not only has he created a bold new synthesis of technology and human skill, he’s done it successfully by gaining an understanding of the community he serves. He understands that blindness itself isn’t the problem, the problem is that so much information is presented visually. He’s created a service that converts that visual information into a non-visual form.
He has then surrounded himself with some of the most dedicated and smart people I’ve had the pleasure to meet.
His motivations and affinity with the blind community are such that he has introduced programs with an advocacy and philanthropic focus, such as making all Aira sessions relating to job seeking free for Explorers. I’m proud to be associated with a company that displays such character, and there’s plenty more coming.
Aira has changed my life, it’s changed my wife Bonnie’s life, and I see it changing lives every day. I seriously can’t imagine anything more motivating, anything that would be more likely to get me bounding out of bed every day, than knowing I have the opportunity to make Aira even better and put it in the hands of more people, so they can experience the improved access to visual information that I have. Through Aira Access and other initiatives, my aim is to ensure that Aira is available in Australia and New Zealand to all who can be empowered by it.
In terms of personal fit, my role with Aira is a culmination of everything I’ve done to date in my professional life. I thrive when I’m building things. For example, I loved building up ACB Radio’s infrastructure from scratch, and starting Mushroom FM. Aira is of course now providing a much-loved service, but it is just getting started in the markets for which I’ll be responsible. The technology will also evolve in spectacular ways.
I’ll be making the most of my advocacy, podcasting, communications and leadership skills. It’s my dream role, and I can’t wait to get started. I’m honoured to have been extended the invitation to join what I believe is the hottest assistive technology company out there, and what is recognized by many independent observers to be one of the most compelling start-ups in general.