A Letter From the CEO, Kay Aikin

December 17th, 2019

Dear Friends of Introspective Systems,


Last December, I was filled with the kind of optimism that comes when you feel like you’re on the verge of something great happening. I had good reason to feel that way. We had grown the IS team to 12 enormously talented individuals, added key projects to our pipeline, secured funding from the BIRD Foundation, and Caryl didn’t yet have a cancer diagnosis. I looked forward to 2019, but as the new year unfolded, everything changed.


One Thursday morning in January, Caryl started acting strangely, she couldn’t seem to find her words and didn’t come down to play pool, something she did daily. An ambulance trip to the hospital and a flurry of diagnostic tests revealed the cause, a brain tumor. The next day she had surgery, and on Monday, literally, 72 hours after having a brain tumor removed, she was back to work. Typical Caryl. Later we would learn the cause of the tumor, cancer.


For ten months, Caryl faced her disease with a steely resolve that seemed reserved for superhumans. She didn’t complain about her treatment regimen, never said why me, and still worked over 40 hours a week. I think she did this because people were so important to her. You might think the work itself drove her dedication, but it was always about the people. She always wanted her technology to improve the lives of others, and in many significant ways, it did. Building better seismic monitoring systems, improved cervical cancer detection, and reduced carbon emissions through renewable energy optimization, are just a few of the ways she accomplished this.

You might think with Caryl’s passing that I shouldn’t be feeling particularly optimistic about our company in 2020, but that is not true. This year will mark our first international grid deployments actively growing our markets and driving sales in several countries. Our strategic partnerships with W. Giertsen Energy Solutions and Kilowatt Labs have significantly helped drive our technology adoption, and very soon, we’ll share some exciting updates on our progress with our Israeli partner, Brightmerge. The result of this work will necessitate hiring more people, so our team will continue to grow, and we’re very excited by that prospect.

In closing, I am reminded of timber farmers who plant trees, often knowing that they won’t be alive to harvest them but do it to sustain future generations. Caryl had a vision to solve the greatest problems, and she gave us a framework to do just that. We are dedicated to fulfilling her legacy. Caryl will never be far from my heart, but her vision will continue to guide this company into the future.


Best wishes for a healthy and happy 2020.