Managing Director – Lydia Partners
Co-Founder, CEO and Chairman of the Board – OxeFit
With a career spanning 25 years in technology, Rab has teamed with some of the most elite industry global leaders in the technical arena. His experience ranges from large, recognizable public companies to co-founding one of the most successful tech ventures operating in the industry today. Almost exclusively, his talents and efforts have been concentrated on edge technology with a primary focus on software, mobile and wireline data architecture development and applications.
He has held executive positions accountable for Operations, Development and Systems Engineering and developed R&D divisions that have pioneered the way for delivery of Mobile Packet Networks. As co-founder and VP of Global Operations at Affirmed Networks, he shared in the coveted honor and success of Affirmed Networks being named a member of the prestigious Global Unicorn Club, an exclusive award recognizing outstanding current private companies valued at $1B+.
He is presently the Managing Partner of Lydia Partners Venture Fund and the Co-founder and CEO of OxeFit. OxeFit is a robotics fitness tech company that focuses on robust strength training and human performance. Currently concentrated on athletes, consumer and the rehabilitation industry, OxeFit is developing and evolving cutting edge robotic fitness solutions powered by AI based algorithms.
Prior to co-founding OxeFit, he co-founded Affirmed Networks (recently acquired by Microsoft for $1.35B) where he lead Global Operations. He managed the teams responsible for Business Development, Global Sales, Channel Partners, Manufacturing, Field Systems Engineering and Technical Support services which included the 24/7 operations center. Prior to Affirmed, he was responsible for the Worldwide Operations organization and Systems Engineering divisions at Sonus Networks.
He received his Bachelor’s and Master’s of Science in Electrical Engineering.
Bryan F. Aylstock
General Partner, Lydia Partners
Bryan F. Aylstock graduated number one in his law school section from the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida in May, 1995, and, after serving at the Department of Justice and as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Roger Vinson, United States District Judge, Northern District of Florida.
Mr. Aylstock founded his firm in 2001, which is now comprised of 26 attorneys and over 200 staff members who have successfully handled the claims of more than 80,000 clients over the past 19 years. Through the efforts of Mr. Aylstock and his partners, the law firm of Aylstock, Witkin, Kreis and Overholtz, PLC is now one of the preeminent plaintiff oriented law firms in the country. The vast majority of Mr. Aylstock’s legal career has been focused on the representation of individuals injured as a result of defective pharmaceutical drugs and medical devices. Mr. Aylstock is currently serving as Lead Counsel for the Plaintiffs in a Multi-District Litigation (MDL) proceeding currently pending before the Honorable M. Casey Rodgers, Chief Judge for the Northern District of Florida, and involving defected Combat Arms earplugs sold to the United States Military by 3M. Previous to that appointment, he served as one of three Coordinating Co-Lead counsel charged with overseeing five separate Multi-District Litigations (MDLs) involving the use of the pelvic repair system products currently pending before the Honorable Joseph R. Goodwin in the Southern District of West Virginia. Mr. Aylstock served as Lead Counsel in In re: Avandia Marketing Sales Practices and Products Litigation, MDL 1871. He was selected as “Best Attorney” in the “Best of the Coast” awards by The Independent News.
Mr. Aylstock is regularly invited to speak at attorney education conferences on issues related to the handling of pharmaceutical and medical device cases, electronic discovery in complex cases, and other mass tort issues. Mr. Aylstock has developed substantial experience in handling complex class litigation consolidated within the multi-district mechanism.
Mr. Aylstock is presently licensed to practice before all state and federal courts in Florida, having passed the Florida Bar with the highest score in Florida’s First Appellate District. He is also licensed to practice before all Alabama and Mississippi state and federal courts, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and the Supreme Court of the United States.
Michael I. Murdoch
General Partner, Lydia Partners
Serial entrepreneur Mike Murdoch established a long and successful track record as a leader and innovator in the highly competitive high-tech marketplace. With Lydia Partners, Mike has now turned his energy and focus to identifying promising young companies and helping them grow rapidly and profitably.
Murdoch founded AppRiver in 2002 as a pioneer in the Security Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) space, making enterprise-grade business applications accessible for companies of all sizes. This easy, effective and affordable approach led to explosive growth and earned AppRiver a place alongside industry leaders like McAfee, Symantec and others.
In the years that followed, Murdoch shepherded new products into the AppRiver lineup that helped the company maintain its position as a leader in cloud-based email security and business productivity services. As competitors sold out or shut down, AppRiver remained profitable with some 60,000 corporate customers and 10 million mailboxes worldwide protected by its technology.
In February of 2019, Murdoch sold his interest in the company to Zix, a Dallas-based cybersecurity company. Still, however, his signature quote, “You know the drill!” is emblazoned on the wall.
Murdoch is a 2016 graduate of Leadership Florida’s executive program and has earned a host of honors including induction into the Ernst and Young Tech Hall of Fame and being named Ernst and Young’s 2009 Florida Entrepreneur of the Year. Two Florida governors have honored Murdoch for innovation and job creation and members of his community chose him to receive the Rotary’s 2015 Ethics in Business award.
He also serves on the advisory boards for Sacred Heart Health Care, the Center for Cybersecurity and for the College of Science and Engineering at the University of West Florida, is a member of Atlanta’s Technology Executive Roundtable, and was a founding member of Innovation Coast, a consortium of technology and knowledge-based companies in Northwest Florida. In 2018, his success landed him on Florida Trend’s inaugural “500 Most Influential Business Leaders” list, with a repeat appearance in 2019.
Murdoch and his wife, Addie, recently launched the coastal lifestyle venture, Reboot and Co., which they intend to grow to become a major travel, entertainment, and clothing brand.
Justin G. Witkin
General Partner, Lydia Partners
Justin G. Witkin received his B.S. in finance from Florida State University in 1992, and graduated with high honors from the University of Florida College of Law in 1995. While in law school, Mr. Witkin was an editor on the Florida Law Review, and published an article entitled “A Time for Change: Reexamining the Constitutional Status of Minors” 47 Fla. L. Rev. 113 (1995). Mr. Witkin received American Jurisprudence Awards in Torts, Income Tax, Antitrust and Social Science, and was installed as a member of the Order of the Coif.
After graduating from law school, Mr. Witkin served as a law clerk to the Honorable Ira DeMent and the Honorable Truman S. Hobbs on the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. He then served as a law clerk to the Honorable Edward Carnes on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
Mr. Witkin is currently licensed to practice before all Florida and Mississippi state and federal courts and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Mr. Witkin is a member of the American Bar Association, Litigation Section, the American Association for Justice, and the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers.
As lead class counsel in: In re: MCI Non-Subscriber Telephone Rates Litigation, MDL Docket No. 1275 (S.D. Ill), Mr. Witkin helped to negotiate what has been reported as the largest ever settlement involving the telecommunications industry, an amount in excess of $88 Million. Mr. Witkin has also served as lead counsel in: In re: America Online, Inc Version 5.0 Softward Litigation, MDL Docket No. 1341 (S.D. Fla), and as a member of the Discovery Committee in: In re: Microsoft Antitrust Litigation, MDL Docket No. 1332 (D. Md.).
Mr. Witkin has handled claims for injury arising out the use of the diet drug Fen Phen, the diabetes drug Rezulin, the cold remedy ingredient phenylpropanolamine, the gastrointestinal medicine Lotronex, the anti-cholesterol drug Baycol, and the recalled orthopedic hip implants manufactured by Sulzer Orthopedics. Mr. Witkin limits his practice to the areas of: wrongful death and personal injury and is currently involved in the following matters: Ford Truck Litigation, Vioxx, Fen-Phen, Bextra, PPA, Shell Oil Class and ETS/Praxis Class.
Julia Anthony, CPA
Vice President of Finance
Julia Anthony serves as Vice President of Finance at Lydia Partners. Julia began her career at Deloitte Tax in the business tax services practice, where she worked on corporate tax provisions and regulatory compliance for Fortune 500 Companies headquartered in Texas. She left public accounting to serve as Chief Operating Officer of a political fundraising firm, working on campaign finance with congressional, state, and municipal political clients. Julia earned a Masters of Science in Taxation and a Bachelors in Accounting from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University. Julia is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the state of Texas.