Concord, Calif. – January 17, 2024LightRiver, the premier productivity solutions provider for next generation, multi-vendor, Factory Built Networks® and netFLEX® Transport Domain Orchestration and Control Software, announces today the appointment of Jim Brinksma as Senior Vice President of Software Solutions. The appointment strengthens LightRiver’s leadership team with a SaaS native, while maximizing market opportunities in the era of open optical networking and practical automation. This strategic move is set to further scale the company’s services and magnify the impact of its platform in the industry. In his role at LightRiver, Brinksma will be instrumental in driving the expansion of LightRiver’s portfolio globally, focusing on software automation and network monitoring, further enhancing fiber network operator efficiencies.

With over two decades of industry experience in networking and software across diverse sectors, Brinksma brings a rich leadership background, with notable expertise spanning the Department of Defense, SaaS startups, financial services, and telecommunications. His previous roles include Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Megaport, Co-founder & CTO of InnovoEdge (acquired by Megaport), VP of Strategy & Business Development at Ciena BluePlanet, VP of Sales Engineering & Customer Operations at Ciena, and VP Network Products & Strategy at Goldman Sachs. He also served over seven years in the United States Navy, underlining his diverse and extensive background.

“Jim’s appointment comes at a crucial time as we expand the delivery of cutting-edge, next-generation optical networking technologies, software-defined networks, and automated wavelength monitoring services,” states Mike Jonas, CEO of LightRiver. “I’m thrilled to welcome Jim to our leadership team. His extensive experience in corporate and software development, combined with his visionary approach, aligns perfectly with our efforts to revolutionize network infrastructures and operations for our clients.”

Brinksma earned his doctorate from the University of Maryland. He further broadened his strategic and innovative expertise by completing the Strategy and Innovation Program at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and the Non-Profit Board Leadership Program at Harvard Business School. He is also recognized as a Board Leadership Fellow by the National Association of Corporate Directors.

“I am thrilled to join the LightRiver team at this pivotal time,” comments Brinksma. “I look forward to leveraging my experience to drive innovation and growth across LightRiver’s software automation and productivity solutions. My focus will be on harnessing our capabilities to deliver unparalleled value to our customers and to solidify LightRiver’s position as a leader in this dynamic industry.”

Brinksma will be based out of LightRiver’s Holmdel Software Development Center in New Jersey.

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About LightRiver
LightRiver is the premier provider of multi-vendor, Factory Built Networks® and netFLEX® vendor neutral, Optical Domain Orchestration and Control Software. LightRiver is expert in Packet Optical, DWDM/ROADM, MPLS, IPoDWDM and Carrier Ethernet systems and designs, deploys, automates, and supports next generation, software-controlled transport networks for mission-critical clients that require the highest capacity, reliability, resiliency, and manageability that today’s optical communications technology can deliver.

LightRiver is a portfolio company of Grain Management, LLC, a leading global investment firm focused on the telecommunications sector. LightRiver delivers unique value with hardware, software and engineering services solutions, carrier-grade quality, and unparalleled customer care in multi-domain networking, accelerating time to market for its clients. For additional information about LightRiver, please visit

About Grain Management
We believe broadband and digital infrastructure are foundational to the tech-enabled transformation occurring across all industries and facets of society. And our global team of seasoned and diverse professionals share a collective passion for the power of connectivity to strengthen communities and unlock human potential for all.

Founded in 2007, Grain Management is a leading, global investment firm. We specialize in digital infrastructure and are a trusted solutions provider to the broadband and communications industry. Our unique combination of sector knowledge, experience as operators, and disciplined analytical approach guide our differentiated investment strategy across fiber networks, data centers, wireless spectrum, cell towers, as well as managed and infrastructure services. For more information visit


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