Hey there! I’m a full-stack developer in fintech, coming from a diverse background spanning academia, government, and private industry.

Past professional experiences have ranged from field deployments and flight missions with a NASA airborne radar system, to bioinformatics applications research at an HPC (supercomputing) center.

The products of these experiences continue to be employed by organizations such as Fermilab, the Forestry Research Institute in Taiwan, among many others. End users of my work have ranged from research labs, industrial production lines, to Fortune 500 companies.

Such projects saw extended on-site work in both Asia and Europe- travel is highly desired in any future opportunity!

From bare-metal embedded hardware all the way up to high level supercomputing applications, this cat has seen it all. Challenge me!


University of California, San Diego

Computer Science, B.S. (2012)


Expensify, Inc.

January 2015 - Present
  • Technical work involved the aggregation of transaction data from banks through APIs and various other integrations
  • Created, Maintained, Refactored, and Scaled a secure, PCI-compliant back-end system that processes millions of transactions for several million customers a day.
  • Planned and implemented user-facing as well as back-end features that required cross-team efforts from engineering to customer support.
  • Worked closely with the infrastructure team on low-level issues ranging from load balancing to configuring deployments of new systems.
  • Performed data correction and analysis of large complex data sets through SQL queries and scripts in order to drive high level business decisions.
  • Developed business and technical relationships with industry vendors, partners, and financial institutions.
  • Extensive interactions with end-users ranging from individuals to enterprise companies to resolve technical issues and to close sales/partnership deals.
  • Managed and trained small engineering teams both local and remote.
  • Assisted with international expansion efforts on banking integrations, including on-site remote work.

Expensify, Inc.

October 2012 - December 2014

  • PHP back-end and JS front-end development on a large web application utilized by millions of users
  • Mobile development on Android, iOS, and Windows Phone
  • Back-end systems work on mission-critical C++ and Enterprise Java applications.
  • Worked with various APIs and data formats in order to integrate with partners and clients.

GreenCitizen, Inc.

June 2012 - October 2012

  • Developed new functionality for an internal workflow management system using HTML, PHP, jQuery, and MySQL.
  • Work ranged from high level streamlining of workflows and physical processes, to database query optimization.
  • Improvements to production line worker efficiency as a result of this effort amounted to thousands of dollars in continued savings for the company.

ICHEC (Irish Centre for High-End Computing)

Visiting Research Student, June 2011 - August 2011
  • Conducted an evaluation on the suitability of various short-read alignment software for bioinformatics research in an HPC environment, in order to drive high-level research decisions.
  • Deployed Hadoop along with helper scripts on top of a traditional HPC system.
  • Worked with the Torque job scheduler for Hadoop, GPU, and MPI jobs.

NASA / Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory

June 2011 - August 2011
  • Developed a real-time graphical display system for the second generation Airborne Precipitation Radar at the California Institute of Technology, JPL.
  • Field deployed on the NASA GRIP (Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes) campaign in Florida, and flew hurricane missions on the NASA DC-8 research aircraft.
  • Responsibilities included ensuring the proper function, data collection quality, and troubleshooting of a microwave radar system.
  • The software system enabled mission scientists to conduct effective in-flight planning, and assisted other scientific instruments onboard. It was cited for saving tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars in flight time, and for increasing research effectiveness.

Scripps Institution of Oceanography

January 2010 - June 2010
  • Developed new embedded software features in C for an underwater chemical sensor platform.
  • Resulting product was used in oceanographic labs in various institutions across the US.

UCSD Physics Department

January 2010 - June 2010
  • Developed a cross-platform GUI tool in Python for Fermilab to maintain XML configuration files.
  • The tool was a notable component in the system, as it managed worldwide clusters for the processing of data from particle physics experiments.

UCSD Political Science Department

September 2008 - July 2012
  • Improved political simulation software for a research project on an expanded model of the “Prisoner’s Dilemma”.
  • Communicated high level requirements of cross-disciplinary work into Java code.

Pacific Rim Undergraduate Experiences Program (PRIME)

June 2009 - August 2009
  • Conducted research in Taiwan at the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium and the National Center for High Performance Computing
  • Devised a parallelized image processing software system in Java for the analysis of fluorescent coral larvae using Hadoop and the streaming middleware DataTurbine.
  • Developed a multilingual Chinese and English GUI frontend for the software system for the ease of use by environmental researchers.
  • Software later employed by Taiwanese Forestry Research Institute for bee research.

Awards and Honors

2015 Winner of the SpaceApps Challenge: San Francisco
2012 Gordon Engineering Leadership Scholar
2011 NASA Group Achievement Award
2009 UCSD HKN, Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering Honors Society
2008 BAE Systems Scholarship
2008 Organization of Chinese Americans Scholarship

© 2020 Robert J. Chen