30 Notable IT Executive Moves: January 2018

New Faces In New Places

Several vendors kicked off 2018 by making executive changes on their channel sales teams, with channel chiefs coming and going at the likes of Lenovo, Google, Carbonite and Nutanix. But the busy month was headlined by the announced retirement of Synnex CEO Kevin Murai, who will be succeeded by company veteran and COO Dennis Polk.

A handful of solution providers also experienced a changing of the guard, including ePlus, which saw longtime CTO Mark Melvin step down after 12 years with the company. Elsewhere, it was revealed that former Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman will take the top role at mobile-first media company NewTV.

In the following slides, check out our picks for the 30 most significant channel executive moves that happened this January.

Kevin Murai

The longtime president and CEO of Synnex is stepping down from his post to become the distributor's chairman of the board. Taking over for Murai is Dennis Polk, who currently serves as Synnex's chief operating officer.

Murai presided over significant changes at Synnex and in the distribution business during his decade with the company. He notably spearheaded Synnex's $830 million acquisition of Westcon Americas, which added about $10 billion to Synnex's total addressable market.

"It's a little bit bittersweet, right? It really hits home once it gets announced," Murai said in an interview with CRN. "It's been very endearing just in terms of all the messages that come in. I'll miss it a lot. But at the same time, I am certainly looking forward my new role as chairman of the board. But I need more time with my wife and my kids."

Polk started with Synnex in early 2002 as senior vice president of corporate finance, and later that year became the distributor's chief financial officer. He became the chief operating officer in 2006. He has been on Synnex's board of directors since 2012.

Sammy Kinlaw

Kinlaw left his role as vice president and channel chief of Lenovo's North American PC business to become vice president worldwide channel and OEM sales at printer manufacturer Lexmark.

The move comes as Lexmark, now privately owned by investors that include China-based Apex Technology, prepares for a channel push meant to pressure industry rivals like Xerox and HP. Lexmark launched its Connect partner program in early 2016.

Kinlaw had been Lenovo's North American channel chief since April 2015. He led a significant overhaul in the vendor's channel program pricing and rebate structure that drew criticism from some partners, who said the changes will dramatically cut into their profit margins.

Matthew Zielinski

Following Sammy Kinlaw's departure, Lenovo announced the hiring of Zielinski, a 12-year sales veteran of chip maker AMD, as its next North American president amid significant PC business challenges and a recent channel program restructuring.

Zielinski had most recently served as corporate vice president of OEM sales at AMD, where he helped oversee sales to Lenovo. He will have responsibility over Lenovo's PC and Smart Devices division in North America in the new role.

Lenovo's previous North America president, Emilio Ghilardi, stepped down in August and was succeeded on an interim basis by senior vice president Christian Teismann. The computer giant saw U.S. PC shipments plunge 23.6 percent year over year during the fourth quarter of 2017.

Rodney Foreman

Foreman was appointed vice president of global channel sales at Nutanix, where he'll look to help partners displace rival tech and drive growth around the hyper-converged infrastructure expert's channel ecosystem.

The former Informatica senior vice president has spent most of his IT career at IBM, holding roles such as senior design architect, product manager and director of channel sales for the company's Cloud and Smarter Infrastructure division. In that last role, Foreman led a channel business with more than 6,000 global partners.

"This product portfolio we have at Nutanix is really on the leading edge of what customers are doing in the way of innovation in their data centers," Foreman told CRN. "It's refreshing for me to be in a company that's providing innovative technology to customers, and not technology that's dated and not where the market is headed."

Greg Hughes

Data protection and data management software vendor Veritas has appointed former Serena Software executive Greg Hughes as its new CEO. Hughes is taking the reins from Bill Coleman, who is stepping down.

Hughes is no stranger to Veritas. He served as executive vice president of global services between 2003 and 2005, and after Symantec acquired Veritas served as Symantec's president of global services including the Veritas business. He left the company in 2009 as chief strategy officer.

Coleman had been CEO at Veritas since the split with Symantec in 2015, when the security vendor sold Veritas to a group of outside investors, including the Carlyle Group, for $8 billion. He is retaining his seat on the Veritas board of directors and will join The Carlyle Group as an operating executive.

Jon Whitlock

The Carbonite channel chief is out at the data protection vendor following a restructuring of its channel organization. The growing company has opted to divide its channel sales and marketing organizations, with the former remaining under the larger Carbonite sales umbrella and the latter becoming part of its marketing arm.

"As we were rebuilding out the marketing organization, we saw the opportunity to scale up for the channel organization as well, to take what we've done successfully in customer marketing to channel marketing," Norman Guadagno, senior vice president of marketing at Carbonite, told CRN.

Whitlock had previously overseen both entities as vice president of channel sales and marketing since March. He had joined Carbonite in December 2016 following a four-year stint at Kaspersky Lab and a three-year stop at software vendor Brainshark.

Bertrand Yansouni

Yansouni, formerly a top channel executive at Google Cloud, has joined cloud data management and data protection vendor Rubrik as its new channel chief.

Yansouni joins Palo Alto, Calif.-based Rubrik as the company's new vice president of worldwide channels, where he reports to Mark Smith, Rubrik's executive vice president of global sales and business development.

For the last year, Yansouni had served as vice president of global partner sales and strategic alliances for Google's public cloud business. Prior to that, he spent about four years at Cloudera, a developer of data management technology, where he eventually rose to the position of vice president of global partner sales.

Meg Whitman

Former Hewlett Packard CEO Whitman is set to join Hollywood mogul Jeffrey Katzenberg's mobile content venture, NewTV, as chief executive effective March 1.

NewTV is aiming to provide what it calls "a custom-designed, purpose-built technology platform for mobile, on-the-go viewing of the highest-caliber curated content." The company is pledging to bring "the highest-quality Hollywood production values and storytelling to mobile, in bite-sized formats of 10 minutes or less."

John Shaw, founder and CEO of solution provider Digital Nebula, told CRN that Whitman's rare blend of technology and consumer expertise will be critical in making NewTV successful.

Adrian Ionel

Ionel, the founding CEO of Mirantis, has returned to lead the pioneering OpenStack vendor as it seeks to  embrace a broader, multi-cloud sales strategy.

Ionel left the company to found open-source software startup Dorsal in October 2015. However, he returned in December to replace former CEO and partner Alex Freedland, with whom Ionel had maintained regular contact while at Dorsal. Freedland has since left Mirantis but remains on its board of directors.

Mirantis, which has recently forged an alliance with Amazon Web Services, is betting on a multi-cloud world and aims to establish itself as an open cloud company under Ionel.

Kirk Robinson

Robinson, a 25-year Ingram Micro veteran who oversees all of its U.S. sales, vendor management and marketing operations, was promoted to Chief Country Executive for the U.S. The new position adds U.S. strategy, operations and business execution to his list of responsibilities at the IT distribution giant.

"This role includes everything across the technology life cycle and value chain that we have to offer in the U.S.," Robinson told CRN.

Paul Bay, executive vice president and group president of the Americas, will continue to serve as Robinson's direct superior. Robinson took over many of Bay's previous duties when he was promoted to senior vice president in the company's commercial markets and global sales group in August 2016.

Jason Bystrak

Bystrak, another longtime Ingram Micro executive, left the distributor to become vice president of worldwide channels and distribution at cloud-based vendor eFolder in January.

Bystrak spent the past seven months as Ingram Micro Cloud's global executive director of technology partner enablement. He had previously served as executive director of the company's North American cloud division for nearly four years but saw his role shift following the addition of Avnet cloud executive Tim FitzGerald, who became vice president of North American Cloud Channel Sales last July.

With eFolder, Bystrak will be responsible for establishing strategic alliances and bolstering the adoption of the company's data protection solutions among channel partners. He will report to eFolder CRO Adam Slutskin.

Mike Nefkens

Nefkens, an executive vice president and general manager at DXC Technology, has decided to lave the recently formed solution provider powerhouse to pursue other opportunities, a company spokesperson confirmed to CRN. It is not clear when exactly his departure will take place.

Nefkens has held the executive vice president and general manager role at HPE Enterprise Services for two-plus years before the business merged with CSC to form DXC, No. 11 on the 2017 CRN Solution Provider 500. He then began to lead the regions and industries sector of DXC's Sell division in April.

DXC has shown to be cost-conscious in the early stages of its existence. In August, the company revealed it had axed four layers of management in its delivery and support organizations during its first quarter of operations.

Mark Melvin

Melvin's decade-plus tenure at ePlus Technology recently came to an end, as the longtime chief technology officer left the Herndon, Va.-based solution provider to pursue new challenges.

In a post published on his personal LinkedIn page, Melvin wrote that while he is not retiring, he also does not yet have any specific plans for his "next chapter" in life. He added that he'll be relocating to Florida in the next few months.

Melvin joined ePlus, No. 35 on the 2017 CRN Solution Provider 500, in 2006 as the director of solutions engineering for the Mid-Atlantic. He was then promoted to CTO in 2008, a role he held for nearly 10 years. The company shifted from a transactional hardware reseller to more of a services integrator under Melvin, with a particular focus on the data center.

Patrick Dennis

Dennis, a veteran with more than a decade of leadership experience at EMC, was named president and CEO of storage vendor Quantum in January. He joins Quantum after spending two years as the CEO of security software firm Guidance Software, which was acquired by OpenText during his time with the company.

Dennis succeeds six-year CEO Jon Gacek, who left the company in November and later joined AI computing company Veritone. Adalio Sanchez had filled the role of interim CEO for the past two months.

At EMC, Dennis' roles included senior vice president and COO of products and marketing, which saw him lead the vendor's $10.5 billion enterprise and midrange business division. He also worked as group vice president of North American storage sales at Oracle.

Wendy Petty

Data modeling software developer Erwin tapped Petty as senior vice president of global sales and services with the vendor gearing up for a GDPR-fueled channel push.

An industry veteran with a wealth of indirect sales experience, Petty joins Erwin following a three-year stint at Verizon, where she served as executive director of global channels in the carrier's Enterprise Solutions group. She'll be part of a team that also includes Senior Vice President and Vice President of Global Channels Dave Casillo, formerly a channel chief at Adobe, Dolby and Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

"I've got a deep, deep level of respect for her," CEO Adam Famularo said of Petty. "I know her expertise will bring us over the line we're trying to reach."

Ken Archer

Archer, an industry veteran with leadership experience at HPE and Avaya, was named chief revenue officer at network monitoring and performance management software firm Nectar Services.

The position puts Archer in charge of the Jericho, N.Y.-based company's go-to-market strategy as well as its global channels arm. The role also gives him an opportunity to double down on Nectar's alliances with Microsoft and Cisco Systems.

Archer has worked alongside Nectar for more than a decade, dating back to his time as Avaya's North America channel chief. He was a driving force behind Nectar establishing a long-term business relationship with Microsoft.

Brian Householder, Scott Kelly

Hitachi Vantara, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Hitachi Ltd., has promoted Householder to CEO and bumped Kelly up to the COO role, effective April 1.

Ryuichi Otsuki, Hitachi Vantara's current chief executive, will in turn become deputy general manager of Hitachi's corporate sales and marketing group. In addition, he'll act as chairman of Hitachi Global Digital Holdings, which houses Hitachi Vantara, oXya and Hitachi Consulting.

Householder previously held president and COO titles at Hitachi Vantara, where he oversaw day-to-day operations of the data management solutions company. Kelly will continue to serve as chief transformation officer in addition to his new COO role.

Keith Macove, Lynn Lucas

Hyper-converged and secondary storage specialist Cohesity made a pair of key executive hires to start the year, tapping Macove to drive the startup's North America channel sales and naming Lucas as the company's first chief marketing officer.

Macove joins Cohesity after a three-year stint as senior director of North America channel sales at Nimble Storage. He also spent over a decade at NetApp with his last role as director of channel sales, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Lucas spent the past two years at Veritas Technologies, where she served as vice president of enterprise marketing and corporate communications before becoming the CMO. She was also vice president of global collaboration marketing at Cisco Systems for nearly five years.

Gaurav Chand, Shaun Andrews

Telecom giant CenturyLink made two additions to its executive team following the close of its $34 billion Level 3 Communications acquisition. Chand will join the carrier as executive vice president of marketing, and Andrews will become executive vice president of product management.

Chand was previously global senior vice president of Dell EMC's marketing infrastructure solutions group. He is a 17-year Dell veteran who led marketing efforts for the computing powerhouse's multibillion-dollar enterprise solutions portfolio. Andrews is a former Level 3 executive who most recently served as senior vice president of IP and real-time communications.

Both executives will report to CenturyLink President and COO Jeff Store.

Stu Solomon

Denver-based security specialist Optiv, No. 27 on the 2017 CRN Solution Provider 500, promoted Solomon to the newly created role of chief technology and strategy officer.

The position will put Solomon in charge of the company's 1,000-person advisory, managed security and emerging services organization. He will also be responsible for shaping Optiv's product offerings and devising the go-to-market strategy around them.

Solomon joined Optiv in 2015 as a security strategist and later became executive vice president of security solutions and operations.

Ken Hammond

San Mateo, Calif.-based security information and event management vendor Exabeam snagged Hammond, formerly Carbon Black's channel chief, to fill the newly created role of assistant vice president of Americas, Asia-Pacific and Japan channels.

Hammond most recently spent two years as vice president of worldwide channel and alliance sales at Carbon Black. Before that, he ran worldwide channel sales for Cisco Systems' massive security sales business.

Under Hammond, Exabeam plans to go from two to five channel personnel in the Americas, with the company adding more expertise around channel marketing.

Dave DeWalt

DeWalt, a well-known security industry veteran, became chairman of San Francisco-based security investment M&A advisory firm Momentum Cyber.

DeWalt already serves as a director, vice chairman or chairman on the boards of several companies, but he is perhaps best-known for what he accomplished as CEO of FireEye (four years) and McAfee (five years).

Momentum Cyber, DeWalt said, will provide life-cycle services to cybersecurity firms ranging from incubation and launch assistance to developing and executing an exit strategy via a merger, initial public offering or potential liquidation.

David Goulden

The former Dell EMC Infrastructure Chief has left the company to take a new job as executive vice president and CFO at online travel booking provider The Priceline Group.

He will lead the company's global financial operations, including its finance, tax and accounting teams, in the new role, reporting to The Priceline Group CEO Glenn Fogel.

While at Dell, where he spent more than a decade, Goulden served as president of Dell EMC's Enterprise Systems Group. He was responsible for servers, storage, networking and converged infrastructure at the computing giant.

James Kavanaugh

Kavanaugh was named chief financial officer of the industry titan in a move to replace Martin Schroeter, who will become senior vice president of global markets.

A 22-year IBM veteran, Kavanaugh had been senior vice president for finance and operations after serving as the company's vice president and controller from 2008 to 2015. He also has leadership experience from his time at AT&T, where he was CFO of the carrier's Americas Global Services business.

Schroeter will be in charge of IBM sales in Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and the Asia-Pacific, among other areas, a company spokesperson told Reuters. He is replacing Bruno Di Leo, another company veteran who is retiring.

Dan Cooper

Xerox has named Cooper president of Global Imaging Systems, a subsidiary of the print giant focused on document management systems, network integration services and electronic presentation systems.

Cooper is replacing Tom Salierno, who plans to retire in April. Cooper, a nearly two-decade veteran of GIS, was put in charge of GIS field operations in May 2016 and led efforts to expand its channels arm last year with the acquisition of three multi-brand dealers. He will report to Xerox's President of North American Operations Mike Feldman.

"Dan is an exceptional leader who will continue to expand GIS and its portfolio of office technology dealers across the U.S.," Feldman said in a statement. "He has big shoes to fill, and we thank Tom Salierno for his many years of service and track record of exceptional growth."

Kip Bowes

Big data analytics software developer AtScale has named Bowes, a former Cloudera executive, to be the company's first vice president of customer success.

Bowes, who has led service and customer success organizations at Oracle, Endeca, Tibco, Macromedia and Allaire, will work closely with AtScale channel partners to better service enterprise customers in the new role.

Another facet of Bowes' job will be developing implementation strategies and fixed services that AtScale channel partners – including solution providers such as Cognizant and Deloitte – will use to drive AtScale solutions sales.

Jason Cowie

Security vendor HyTrust has tasked Cowie with building out a go-to-market strategy and launching a new global partner program that appeals to a wide range of solution providers.

Cowie, whose official title will be vice president of global channels, was channel chief at disaster recovery and business continuity software vendor Zerto for nearly two years before joining HyTrust. Prior to that, he was a top channel executive at Virtual Instruments for three years.

HyTrust's new partner program will focus on solution providers that have struggled with making the transition from selling on-premises products to helping their customers move workloads into hybrid environments, Cowie said.

Michael Rabinovitch

Tech Data announced that Rabinovitch will join the distributor as senior vice president, chief accounting officer effective March 1.

Rabinovitch spent the past year as senior vice president of finance and chief accounting officer at Office Depot, which he joined in January 2015 as vice president of finance for North America. In that role, he oversaw finances for a $14 billion organization with more than 60,000 associates.

In addition to Rabinovitch's arrival, Tech Data revealed that its current principal accounting officer – Senior Vice President and Corporate Controller Jeffrey Taylor – will be resigning as of March 30.

Greg Nicastro

Cloud service management vendor CloudHealth Technologies appointed Nicastro to the newly created role of chief product officer, where he will focus on building and scaling the company's product teams.

Nicastro spent the previous five years at Veracode, where he led software development and security research as executive vice president of product development and SaaS operations. Before that, he was an executive vice president and consultant at storage and information management company Iron Mountain.

CloudHealth, which hired Tom Axbey as president and CEO in September, landed a Series D funding round worth $46 million last summer as it pursues global expansion of its enterprise-focused cloud solutions.

Greg Iuzzolino

TPx Communications hired telecom channel veteran Greg Iuzzolino as director of national channel development in an effort to transform its once-regional strategy into a national sales push.

Iuzzolino was previously vice president of channel sales at Spectrum Business, formerly Charter Communications, following the carrier's acquisition of Time Warner Cable in 2016. He had served as senior director of partner sales for Time Warner Cable before the deal took place.

Iuzzolino will report to Jim Delis, senior vice president of national channel development, who joined TPx in May.