Meet Hamel Husain

Learn how the AlixAlumnus helped scientists and healthcare professionals gather, track, and monitor COVID-19 data

How has your career developed? 

I worked at AlixPartners as a Vice President, Applied Analytics on the Digital team from 2011-2015. My time at the firm gave me first-hand experience of helping companies navigate a variety of difficult technical and organizational situations. After AlixPartners, I moved into the tech industry, first at DataRobot, followed by Airbnb, and then GitHub, which had been recently acquired by Microsoft. There, I was involved with the design and development of software engineering, machine learning, and developer tools, as well as leading engineering teams.

Tell us about the work you did to support the Covid-19 crisis?

The Covid-19 dashboard project was an open source venture where virtual teams of data scientists collaborated to gather, analyze, and present data related to the Covid-19 pandemic, through accessible dashboard visualizations. The dashboards were continually updated and because the underlying code was completely open source, they could be adapted to support many researchers in their work.

What was the goal of the Covid-19 dashboard project?

We were collectively building tools that serve the scientists and healthcare professionals working to monitor and resolve the Covid-19 crisis. The project was used to measure infection growth rates in certain regions and to help track the number of cases of Covid-19 worldwide.

What inspired you to get involved?

When the Covid-19 epidemic began, I saw that data scientists were struggling to share information with a broader audience, so I created these dashboards as a place where data scientists could share their work related to the crisis. The uptake was immediate.

How did you find balance during this time when work and life were so intertwined?

I liked to start my day with exercise. I usually began by doing something physical before diving into other tasks. I also tried to have a growth mindset and focus on learning something new each day. Most importantly, I spent quality time with my family, which I still believe is key to finding balance, meaning, and strength during any difficult times.