Morris Panner, CEO of AmbraHealth
As CEO of Ambra, Morris Panner leads the company on its mission of delivering better care through better technology. Morris is an active voice in the cloud and enterprise software arena, focused on the services and healthcare verticals. He is a frequent contributor to business, healthcare, and technology publications. Before Ambra, Morris built and sold an industry-leading business-process software company, OpenAir, to NetSuite (NYSE:N). He once served as the US Embassy Resident Legal Advisor in Bogota, Colombia; and his first job ever was as a janitor at his old high school while on summer break from college. Both of these very different experiences taught him valuable lessons about the human condition and make him cherish his time with family that much more. Morris has a BA from Yale University and a JD from Harvard University.
Ambra Health is a leading provider of cloud-based medical image exchange, viewing and management. Our system enables doctors and patients to easily access, view and share critical diagnostic imaging studies.
Rhianna Collier: Tell me about Ambra’s mission.
Morris Panner: Ambra Health is a digital health company, which uses a secure cloud to enable the sharing, viewing and storage of medical images. We make it easier for patients and doctors to share critical diagnostic data to improve healthcare. Our patient accounts are free, so if anyone wants a way to safely store and share their health data, they can sign up here: https://ambrahealth.com/individual-account/
Rhianna Collier: What were you doing before you joined Ambra Health as CEO?
Morris Panner: I had been CEO of OpenAir, which we sold to NetSuite/Oracle. Having seen the power of cloud software in the commercial context, we got very excited to try to bring the cloud interoperability power to healthcare. We partnered with the group of physicians who had started Ambra and worked closely with our venture financing team, some of whom had participated in our previous company. My own personal story lined up well, because I had a son, who had some health challenges and our family experienced the difficulties all patients and caregivers experience trying to navigate the healthcare system. The story has a happy ending, but it made me super committed to bringing tools to help others. Here is a story with some additional detail: Washington Post Coverage https://goo.gl/BN62Zk
Rhianna Collier: How did you get your start in the technology industry?
Morris Panner: I had an unconventional background for a technology executive. I was always committed to public service, so I started out as a government lawyer and even served overseas in Bogota fighting drugs and money laundering. When it came time to leave government service, I was lucky enough to pursue my other great passion which was entrepreneurship. I believe in building things and addressing challenges and building a technology company is the best way I know. Here are two items which go into a bit more detail: New York Times coverage https://goo.gl/Wv3s8f; Rock Health coverage: https://goo.gl/525Bru
Rhianna Collier: What are your goals for the next 5 years? Where do you see yourself and Ambra Health?
Morris Panner: Our company has been operating on a series of two-year plans. We can break it down into 8 quarters. Every quarter we sit down as a group and we share the same financial information that we share with our Board. Right now, we are in our second quarter of our current two-year cycle. Our first quarter was fantastic, so we are working hard to keep our momentum. If we are fortunate enough, our aspiration is to continue our growth and development of the company. We believe in our mission and are confident it has years to run! Our goal is to build a robust public digital healthcare company.
Rhianna Collier: Give us your TechTip of the month.
Morris Panner: Don't quit. If you have a good idea - which means you see a problem to solve - you have to believe your intuition and pursue it. When startups fail, they fail for one overwhelming reason, which is that the team gives up in the face of adversity. There is nothing harder or more gratifying than creating something and if you are lucky enough to be part of an emerging company team, your core responsibility is to stick at it. The world needs your vision and solution, but no one will ever make it easy.
Rhianna Collier is VP for the Software Division at SIIA. Follow the Software team on Twitter at @SIIASoftware.