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Global Technology Distribution Council CEO Tim Curran To Retire

Curran, who in 16 years turned GTDC from a small U.S.-based consortium to a worldwide promoter of the importance of distribution to the IT industry, now wants to focus on teaching MBA students.

Tim Curran, CEO of the Global Technology Distribution Council, is retiring after leading the organization for 16 years.

Curran told CRN Wednesday that he remains passionate about the IT industry, but that after 16 years at GTDC and, before that, stints at Panasonic and Tech Data, it is time to slow down to focus on his other passions, including family and teaching MBA students at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg.

 "I want to put more effort in the MBA program," he said. "I really enjoy teaching students about the world and how it is changing, and how all the technology and social media changes will impact them. I want to open their eyes about the opportunities and challenges ahead."

 [Related: GTDC Summit: New Technologies, New Models Change The Role Of Distribution]

The GTDC is an industry consortium consisting of the world's largest IT distributors, and is focused on developing a healthy IT channel for hardware, software, and services solution providers.

Curran joined GTDC in 2002 after a five-year run as senior vice president at Tech Data. He said that at the time, GTDC was focused exclusively on U.S.-based distribution, and as an organization was running a deficit.

Since then, the organization has expanded globally with new distribution members from Asia, Europe, and Latin America, Curran said. The organization has also formed partnerships with the Port Washington, N.Y.-based NPD Group in the U.S. and with London-based Context and Nuremberg, Germany-based GfK to build databases of information about sales through distribution.

 "Distributors show their data to these companies to let everyone know what's happening," he said. "This lets the distributors benchmark themselves against the industry, and see what's rising in distribution and what's falling."

Curran said his biggest accomplishment has been to show how important distribution has become in the IT industry.

"Members tell me, 'Tim, you've done a tremendous job of promoting and defending the industry,'" he said. "I've helped make people aware of the value proposition of distribution, and made that segment of the industry more visible."

Kavita May, GTDC's senior vice president of planning and operations, will take over as interim CEO after Curran officially leaves on Jan. 2. May joined the GTDC about the same time as Curran did. Prior to joining the GTDC, May was a business analyst at Tech Data, where she worked closely with Curran.

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