Executive Moves: 7 Big Recent Hires At Optiv

The cybersecurity powerhouse has hired a number of new C-level executives, including a new CRO this month, as well as building out the leadership team at its federal business.

Executive Moves

At cybersecurity powerhouse Optiv, the push for growth continues to gain steam with a string of notable executive hires. The series of recent hires has included three new C-level executives and a number of additions to the leadership team for its federal business subsidiary, known as Optiv + ClearShark.

[Related: IPO-Bound Optiv Expands Managed Security, Vulnerability Services]

Most recently, Denver-based Optiv named tech sales veteran John Hurley as its new CRO earlier this month. Hurley, whose career has included two decades spent at Cisco, told CRN last week that he’ll be working both with customers and with Optiv’s vendor partners to help drive the company’s expansion. “I think we have a tremendous opportunity to grow this company,” Hurley said. Other recent executive hires at Optiv have included a new CFO and CIO as the company, No. 24 on CRN’s 2023 Solution Provider 500, continues laying the groundwork for going public.

Meanwhile, several major executive hires have also landed at Optiv + ClearShark, which exclusively serves the U.S. federal government and stems from Optiv’s 2023 acquisition of solution provider ClearShark. The hires have included the appointment of Daniel Wilbricht, a longtime former Dell executive, as president.

Wilbricht said in a recent interview with CRN that his aim is to significantly expand the company’s federal business, both in total size and as a proportion of parent company Optiv’s overall revenue. Major opportunities include providing managed security services to federal agencies, he said. As a result of the recent series of hires, “we’ve got a really high-functioning team” to drive strong growth at Optiv + ClearShark, Wilbricht said.

“We have an opportunity to expand on that footprint and continue to grow it. And we're bringing in leadership to help do that,” he said.

What follows are the key details on Optiv’s latest major executive hires.

Marc Cabi, Michael Feliton

In late September, Optiv announced the hires of Cabi (pictured left) as CFO and Feliton as CIO.

Cabi was most recently CFO at InvestCloud, a SaaS provider for the wealth management sector, and before that was deputy CFO at customer service software maker Zendesk. He initially joined Zendesk as vice president of strategy and head of investor relations in early 2014, shortly before its 2014 IPO. In a news release, Optiv CEO Kevin Lynch cited Cabi’s “experience in fostering a growth lifecycle, private funding and IPO offerings.” Cabi brings “deep capital markets experience” and a strong track record as a financial leader, Lynch said.

Feliton (pictured right) had most recently served as CIO at footwear company Crocs, and before that held the same position at jewelry retailer David Yurman. His experience includes a record of “solving complex global technology issues while driving innovation,” said Bill Croutch, executive vice president and general counsel at Optiv, in the news release.

Daniel Wilbricht

In November, Optiv hired Wilbricht to serve as the new president of its federal business. Wilbricht—who most recently had been general manager for public sector at cybersecurity vendor Devo—is heading the Optiv + ClearShark subsidiary, based in Hanover, Md. He also serves as a member of the executive leadership team at Optiv.

During his more than two decades in the tech industry, Wilbricht has held a number of roles related to the public sector and federal space. From 2013 to 2015, he served as a senior director in the public sector business at Dell, focused on the U.S. Department of Defense and other national security customers.

In speaking with CRN recently, Wilbricht said the cybersecurity needs in the federal government space are massive, due to a combination of intensifying threats, staffing shortages and increased complexity. As a result, federal agencies are increasingly open to working with providers of managed security services — and Optiv + ClearShark is well-positioned to capture the opportunity, he said. The effort started last year but is “really kicking off this year,” Wilbricht said.

Jason Porter, Brent Hansen

In February, Optiv + ClearShark hired Porter (pictured left) as CTO. Previously, Porter had held CTO roles at several IT and consulting services firms focused on federal clients. Those have included CGI Federal, UNICOM Government and OSI.

Previous to the hire, the company had never before had a CTO that was focused on federal issues, according to Wilbricht. Porter is “definitely a CTO visionary,” he said.

Then in March, Optiv + ClearShark announced another hire for its technical leadership team, Hansen (pictured right), as vice president of federal sales engineering. Hansen “brings over 25+ years of experience in security, data encryption, cloud native, Zero Trust, and API security strategies,” the company said in a LinkedIn post. Prior roles included serving in global sales engineering leadership positions at Cequence Security and D2iQ, and as federal CTO at Thales Trusted Cyber Technologies.

Jessica Hetrick

In March, Optiv + ClearShark hired Hetrick as vice president and head of services. Hetrick’s background included working in the FBI’s cyber division and then for U.S. intelligence as a cyber threat analyst. She later worked for Cisco’s Talos threat intelligence team before joining Optiv in early 2021 as a cyber strategy leader. Hetrick went on to become chief of staff to Optiv CEO Kevin Lynch before being recruited to join Optiv + ClearShark.

In the new role, Hetrick’s focus will be on working to “federalize” some of the cybersecurity programs that have been successful at parent company Optiv, Wilbricht said. The goal is to take the same things that Optiv has been doing for its large enterprise customers and “apply that to a fed environment,” he said. “Those are things that we’re putting into place today to really grow our footprint.”

John Hurley

In early April, Hurley joined as CRO of Optiv as the company looks to accelerate its growth and work toward going public. Most recently, Hurley had served as CRO at publicly traded data management firm Quantum Corp. since 2021. Prior to that, he held a number of leadership positions at Cisco over two decades, ultimately as vice president for the tech giant’s global commercial segment.

Speaking with CRN, Hurley said his time at Cisco, where “channel was always a huge focus for us,” has prepared him well for working at a major solution and service provider like Optiv. Key priorities will include ensuring that Optiv’s sales teams have “the best information they can — to make sure that when they're talking to customers, they're bringing relevant solutions and offerings to them,” he said.

In terms of working with Optiv’s vendor partners in the security industry, major focus areas will include “prioritizing the opportunities that are out there,” Hurley said. “We have to make sure that our partners know everything that we have in place today, to make them feel much more strategically aligned with Optiv. That's huge for us.”