Board of Directors






Richard Allan Horning

President and Chairman of the Board

RICHARD ALLAN HORNING practices law as a member of the Venture Technology Group in the Silicon Valley office of Reed Smith LLP, a global law firm. Honored by his peers as a Northern California "IP Super Lawyer" and recognized in the International Who's Who of Internet and E-Commerce Lawyers 2009 as the "most highly nominated lawyer in the US", Richard has been representing technology companies in Silicon Valley, and globally, since 1970. He works with a wide spectrum of clients, from the classic "garage-based" start-up to Fortune 500 multi-nationals.

He specializes in counseling high technology companies in all stages of development on domestic and international issues, including securing, protecting and licensing intellectual property rights, international growth and development, venture capital financing, venture fund formation, supply and distribution relationships including antitrust and unfair competition considerations, and dispute resolution affecting technology driven industries. De Facto, a Finnish publication covering the Nordic legal community, labeled him "Mr. Consigliere" in recognition of his work as a close adviser to venture backed start-ups. 






Ingrid Echter

Executive Director 

 Ingrid Echter is excited to join the Silicon Vikings team to implement her experience working in the event industry in San Francisco and New York City. An Estonian native, Ingrid had the pleasure of leading an Estonian nonprofit organization for 4 years, building an Estonian network in the Bay Area and bringing together different interest groups globally. What made this exciting for Ingrid was creating win-win opportunities and global connections that strengthened her community and built bridges between countries.

With Silicon Vikings Ingrid is excited to learn about the needs of the broader Nordic and Silicon Valley communities to again build strong synergies and win-win opportunities for everyone involved.




Eilif Trondsen 

Chair, SIG Entrepreneurship & Learning

Eilif Trondsen is Research Director at Strategic Business Insights (SBI)in Menlo Park, California. The focus area of Dr. Trondsen’s research and consulting at SBI (formerly Stanford Research Institute) is the use of technology for innovation, learning and performance improvement. He has 32 years' experience at SBI and at SRI International, leading or contributing to a variety of projects for U.S. and foreign clients in the private and public sectors. At SRI and SBI, Dr. Trondsen has held the position of Research Director of the Business Intelligence Program, the director of the Learning on Demand program, and has also led SBI’s research initiative around 3D immersive technologies. In his tenure at SRI and SBI, he has given numerous presentations and autored many publications on various eCommerce, eLearning, innovation and virtual-worlds topics.




Helene Åström


Helene Astrom, has during her 15 years in the finance profession had the opportunity to work with a wide variety of businesses, from automotive manufacturing, software, professional services to healthcare.  Having worked as Finance Manager, Controller and CFO, amongst other positions, has given her a solid knowledge in areas as accounting, processes, business analysis to strategic decision making. She has a professional history of managing financial functions and being part of the executive management team.

Helene was born in Sweden, educated at the University of Lund and is currently living in Silicon Valley.




Christian Olsson

Information Officer

Christian, who holds the position Vice-President Marketing & Alliances at Habit DX Inc. and Habit ID Inc., has extensive marketing, alliances and sales management experience from the Silicon Valley startup scene including Habit ID continuous authentication software, ByteShield digital rights management software, Marratech (Google) videoconferencing, Protegrity database security, and TenFour (FoxT) email security. Christian has also served as the Swedish Trade Commissioner to Australia where he assisted Swedish hitech companies while entering the Australian market. His career started with 14 years at ITT Flygt, the world's leading submersible pump manufacturer, where he held sales & marketing management positions in the US, Sweden and Australia. 




Bengt Eliasson

Nordic Chapter Liaison Officer

Bengt Eliasson is passionate about innovation in business. With 20 years of experience in business development and management, Bengt has devoted most of that time to the next generation of retail and service industries.

Bengt’s major areas of specialization are currently in consumer products, retail development, communications technologies, and consumer analytics.

Prior to joining IBM, Bengt was head of a strategic outsource operation with Unilever Nordics and Varsego. Before that Bengt held various levels of line management in Nordic retailers and suppliers such as ICA-Ahold, Coop, Esselte and Movement.

During his 20 years as accelerator in business projects and companies, Bengt always pushed for innovation, accountability and results and has always been a central figure in growing the company.

Bengt has a Masters degree in Business administration from Lund School of Economics and Business. Bengt also joined post graduate studies at IMD (Lausanne) and internal courses at IBM Business school.

Bengt lives since 2013 with his familly in Northern California.



Christina Samuelson

Head of Communication, PR & Event



Knud Balslev

Chair SIG Mobile