RSA Picks Up Former Fortinet CMO, New Head Of Global Services

RSA is bolstering its executive lineup ahead of its parent company's pending purchase by Dell, adding Holly Rollo as chief marketing officer and Doug Howard as vice president of global services.

Howard joins RSA from cloud and managed security company Savanture, where he was CEO. He will now be responsible for the Bedford, Mass.-based security vendor's transformation of its services business. Howard started in his role at RSA last month, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Rollo joins the company after an abrupt departure last month from Fortinet, where she was also CMO. She had held that position since September after joining the security vendor from FireEye, where she was vice president of corporate marketing. Her departure caused a stir with Fortinet partners at the time, who said it put the company's big bet on marketing into question. CRN reported at the time that Rollo had left her role to take a position at RSA.

[Related: Partners Concerned As Fortinet Loses Chief Marketing Officer, Top Enterprise Sales Leader]

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In her new role, Rollo will be responsible for putting her track record of brand transformation and growth to work, telling CRN that she looks forward to helping RSA maximize its strong brand recognition and better communicate its full value proposition to partners and customers.

"I made a decision to join RSA because I really see it as a great opportunity to not only help transform one of the most respected security brands, but also help drive change overall in the industry," Rollo told CRN. "I'm really humbled and honored that [President] Amit [Yoran] has put confidence in me to lead this role at RSA."

Transformation has been a key theme at RSA since the beginning of 2015, when the security vendor underwent a massive restructuring to better position the company for emerging security trends. In particular, the company has made changes to drive a partner-first and customer-led go-to-market strategy, rolling out a new sales compensation model in February to better align it with the channel.

RSA President Amit Yoran said in a statement that the appointment of Rollo and Howard will prove critical to continuing that transformation of RSA.

"The security industry is broken and in desperate need of transformation, and we at RSA are committed to making investments not only in the right strategies and technologies but in the right people to lead our own transformation. Holly and Doug have the talent, experience and mindset to move the industry and RSA forward," Yoran said in a statement.

To achieve that transformation in marketing, Rollo said, she plans to better highlight RSA's "hidden treasures," which she said included the strong technology and services it provides around analytics, risk management, and identity and access management.

"My job is putting these things front and center. ... It communicates a powerful and relevant message around being a strategic partner," Rollo said.

Partners who had worked with Rollo in previous roles praised her marketing abilities, with one partner, who did not want to be identified, saying that "she clearly knows what she's doing around brand awareness."

Kevin Pouche, chief operating officer at Brookline, Mass.-based K Logix Security, an RSA partner, said he is curious to see how Rollo will fit into the company's new channel-first vision. In an interview with CRN, Rollo said the channel will play a key part in her marketing approach, leveraging the combined value of the RSA, partner and strategic alliance ecosystem.

"Part of a natural transformation for RSA is to support the growth through partners and support the partner ecosystem as a whole. No company can be successful on an island. We can all better deliver value together," Rollo said.

"I think having a clear strategic value proposition and more thoughtful brand awareness and meaning will be helpful for [partners]," she said.