Our teammates are committed to creating a vibrant ecosystem of digital technology excellence, based in the Low Countries region. Below you’ll find information about what they do within DSP Valley, how you can get in touch with them and for which reasons, and a little about what makes them tick.
Jane Judge has always been passionate about international and intercultural communication. Currently, she manages DSP Valley’s communications and events, including social media, building the company’s new website, and putting together the organization’s communications and marketing strategy.
Previously, Jane was an event organizer and marketer as well as a public ambassador for Leuven MindGate. In this capacity, she facilitated international meetings highlighting Leuven’s innovative potential and organized the programming council for Visionary Seminars with IMEC. She also managed the Internationals in Leuven video project. In 2017 and 2018, Jane also consulted for the Fulbright Commission, based in Brussels, for their 75th anniversary celebrations.
Jane holds degrees in International Relations, French, and History from universities in the United States, France, and Scotland. Before building her career in the non-profit sector, Jane obtained her PhD in History from the University of Edinburgh in 2015 and held a 2-year postdoctoral position at KU Leuven thanks, in part, to support from the Belgian American Educational Foundation.
Born in Leuven to American parents, who moved the family back to the US when she was 9, Jane returned to her beloved Belgium in 2016. She and her boyfriend live in Leuven with their cat Selene.
Mark De Colvenaer, Master of Science in Business Engineering (KULeuven), is a hands-on expert in innovation and business development with focus on high-tech and ICT driven solutions for societal challenges.
He has consulted for small as well as big tech companies, fulfilling various management assignments. From 1997 to 2009 he was a guest-professor at the University College Ghent and was board member of the European Network of Living Labs. In 2018, Mark co-founded Kunigi – a leading innovation development practice. He was also closely involved in setting up the SmartCityTech partnership, of which DSP Valley is a proud member.
Within DSP Valley, Mark is responsible for the Smart City Programme, where he focuses on defining and developing cross sector value models, combining different key enabling technologies (e.g. micro-electronics and biotechnology) into new applications for attractive and sustainable urban areas.
In his free time, Mark enjoys bike rides and tasting Belgian beers.
Guus Dhaeze holds a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Technology in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.
Before joining DSP Vallay in January 2017, Guus worked for almost 40 years in the high-tech electronics industry, most of his time in international business development and sales and in management positions with companies such as Intel, Sierra Semiconductor, Hifn and Eurasem.
Since January 2019, Guus has been programme manager for our Digital Technologies Programme.
Veerle De Colvenaer
Shirine Irani holds a Master’s in communication sciences from KU Leuven. After her graduation, Shirine has always worked in the media and communications sector. Besides her work in communication agencies, she regularly offers her communication skills to non-profit organizations, involving sensitization, press campaigns, and fund raising.
Since 2013, Shirine has worked at DSP Valley. For one of DSP Valley’s projects, Flexlines, she has drawn up the communication plan and is implementing it step by step. She manages the project’s events, website, and news articles. In addition, she performs supporting tasks for DSP Valley’s corporate communication.
Shirine enjoys playing the piano and spending time with her 2 kids, family, and friends.
Vera Geboers has been at DSP Valley since the early days in 1999. She started as event and communications manager, transitioned to project manager, and is currently active in finances and administration.
Vera holds a Master’s degree in Dutch, French and Italian from the University of Leuven. After graduating, she worked for 13 years at the Flemish Aerospace Group as event manager, where she built a network in the technology and space sector. It was a small step to continue at Trasys Space, a software company, part of Tractebel Engineering, before joining DSP Valley. Eager to learn and start new experiences, she has focused on new challenges in and outside her job.
Vera’s passion lies with her grandchildren and everything that has do to with Italy.
Dieter Therssen joined DSP valley at the end of 2017 to help it grow into the reference network for smart systems business in the region. Having worked for all sorts and sizes of companies, from startups to large multinationals, he brings an understanding of the specific needs of each member to the position of CEO.
With an M.Sc. in Electronics Engineering from KULeuven (1987), Dieter began his career at IMEC, working on advanced IC design methodologies applied to systems-on-chip integration. The Car-DSP SAA7706 was a landmark result. In time, Dieter became development manager of the International Technology Centre Leuven, delivering chips and modules for consumer, automotive, and lighting applications.
In 2000, Dieter joined Philips Semiconductors in Nijmegen to head up the Audio Competence Centre, provisioning company-wide audio IP blocks. In 2004 he co-founded NXP-software, an independent software provider that rolled out the “LifeVibes” speech and music products into billions of phones. In 2006, at the Corda campus in Hasselt, he assembled a small team that founded “Beatbrew,” which successfully trialed a unique solution for streaming media, capturing user data, and building communities with European mobile operators. Dieter joined Premium Sound Solutions in 2011 to become Business Director automotive Europe, growing it, and enabling the sale of the electronics activities to Lear Corporation in 2016.
As CEO of DSP Valley, I want to make sure we are providing the best service to each member, breeding digital business through collaborative initiatives.
If you expect something more or different than what you are getting, I’d like to know. Your information is valuable feedback. Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.
Looking forward to working together!
Björn holds a Master’s of Science degree in Industrial Sciences in Electronics.
After graduating, Björn worked as a full-time researcher at the University of Leuven, Campus De Nayer, on the development of algorithms for image processing and their implementation onto different hardware platforms.
Björn increasingly engaged in professional services — first as a technological advisor, later as a project manager. That’s how he got in contact with DSP Valley, where in 2005 he started working on overall project management and ICT.
At DSP Valley, Björn now manages the Smart Industry domain and coordinates a number of European and cross-border projects, connecting companies and/or academic institutes to support and foster innovation.
In his free time, Björn plays the saxophone and enjoys life with his wife and three children.
Johan Lecocq holds a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Leuven.
Before joining DSP Valley in 2013, he spent most of his career in the high-tech electronics industry both in management functions and in business development. He built up experience in both the semiconductor and the automotive industry, working successively for Philips Consumer electronics, Philips Semiconductors, Siemens-VDO and TomTom.
Since January 2019, Johan has been programme manager for the Smart Health Programme, helping DSP Valley members to discover and seize the opportunities created by the introduction of digital technologies in the health care market.
Johan enjoys playing the drums and spending time with his family.