The Top 25 Channel Sales Leaders Of 2018

The Sales Leaders

The rapidly-evolving IT industry requires channel executives that embrace emerging technologies to gain competitive advantage for their customers.

These channel leaders are staying ahead of the curve by rolling out new programs and incentives for their existing partners and by adding new solution providers to the stable to conquer new markets.

As part of CRN's The Top 100 Executives Of 2018 list, we highlight 25 channel sales executives that really shine as they work to grow revenue and increase market share with their partners.

25. Rob Cato

Executive Director, North America Channels


Rob Cato became Lenovo’s channel chief earlier this year, with the company citing his established relationships, passion and knowledge of the business as making him ideal for the job. His focus is now on rewarding partners for acquiring new customers.

24. Bill Hooper

Managing Director, North America Agents, SMB, Verizon Business Markets


Bill Hooper has over 25 years of sales and operations management experience. In his role at Verizon, he is focused on driving enhancements for partners as well as establishing initiatives to create a better partner experience.

23. Wayne Newton

Director, Commercial Markets, Americas


Wayne Newton has overseen the integration of the Linksys and Belkin channel programs, creating a more engaged reseller community that receives top-notch training, membership awards and sales support. He also relaunched Linksys into the SMB channel.

22. Faraz Siraj

Regional VP, Americas Channels, Distribution, Alliances


Faraz Siraj re-evaluated RSA’s go-to-market strategy with top partners and aligned resources to ensure they are receiving the tools they need to grow and develop their RSA portfolio. He also has emphasized continued investment in education.

21. Gavriella Schuster

Corporate VP, Worldwide Channels, Programs, One Commercial Partner


Gavriella Schuster has overseen the transformation of Microsoft’s channel program to increase business and profitability for channel partners amid the quest for capturing the massive digital transformation opportunity.

20. Wendy Bahr

SVP, Global Partner Organization

Cisco Systems

With a large and loyal partner base, Wendy Bahr is in a position to drive the services, software and subscription-based consumption models Cisco is depending on. The results have been impressive, with recurring revenue making up a larger share of the vendor’s sales.

19. Sammy Kinlaw

Worldwide VP, Channel, OEM Sales


Sammy Kinlaw is architecting a reinvigorated channel strategy at Lexmark zeroed in on expanding its partner organization, increasing channel spending, recruiting new partners, and opening the door to new cloud-focused service opportunties for solution providers.

18. Pete Peterson

President, Xerox Channels


Channel veteran Pete Peterson has been on the job at Xerox since March 2017 and has been the one to reassure partners through one-on-one meetings, phone calls and emails that through all the turmoil Xerox’s support of partners will not waver.

17. Michael Coleman

VP, Mobile Channel Sales, U.S.

Samsung Electronics America

Michael Coleman has spearheaded Samsung’s B2B push with partners by launching the Mobility Solution Partner Program and overseeing aggressive partner recruitment. He also has built awareness around new opportunities for partners.

16. Steve Pataky

EVP, Worldwide Sales


Steve Pataky launched SonicWall’s Partner Enabled Services Program, which equips solution providers to deliver specialized security services. Pataky also has driven investment with SonicWall’s distributors to better engage the company’s broad and growing channel.

15. Stephanie Dismore

VP, GM, Americas Channel

HP Inc.

Stephanie Dismore has set a modest goal for herself: Make the company unbeatable. Dismore’s sights are set solidly on the future while she strategizes around capitalizing on partner successes and extending those wins with strong innovations.

14. Terry Wise

VP, Global Alliances, Ecosystem and Channels

Amazon Web Services

Terry Wise has turned Amazon’s cloud division into a massive channel juggernaut and he has leveraged its ecosystem to scale the world’s largest cloud. The AWS Partner Network is now developing programs to accelerate business for partners of all stripes.

13. Bill Swales

Group VP, North America Channel Chief, Strategic Alliances Leader


A fierce competitor, Bill Swales is highly regarded by partners, peers and team members for his deep understanding of channel and business fundamentals combined with a data-driven, nononsense approach to delivering results.

12. Jeff McCullough

VP, Americas Partners Sales


Jeff McCullough has a proven track record of developing go-to-market strategies for channel partners. He also has analyzed and built growth plans based on shifting IT consumption, from on-premises to cloud, and transitioning revenue and profit pools.

11. Kendra Krause

VP, Global Channels


Kendra Krause is focused on making Sophos a market leader in security and making sure partners around the world have the programs and support they need. Since she joined Sophos five years ago, she has created a new channel sales model as well as a new partner program.

10. Ken McCray

Head of Channel, Sales Operations, Americas


Ken McCray has expanded McAfee’s partner base through new routes to market with MSPs and has embraced new customer consumption models. He also defeated 31 of the industry’s top channel chiefs to become the 2018 CRN Channel Madness Tournament of Chiefs Champion.

9. Michael and Dan Schwab


D&H Distributing

The family-run, employee-owned company is celebrating its 100th anniversary, thanks in large part to the Schwab brothers’ strong leadership. The zealous advocates for solution providers are adding even more support for partners with a new Solutions & Services program.

8. Shannon Sbar

VP, Channels, North America

APC by Schneider Electric

Shannon Sbar is responsible for driving revenue, strategy and profitability within the North American channels organization. Under her direction, the channel team is focused on increasing business effectiveness and creating strategic relationships.

7. Curtiz Gangi

VP, U.S. Channels, Data Center Segment


Curtiz Gangi has focused his efforts on the enablement and development of partners in the channel. Thanks to Gangi, all Eaton partners have a better understanding of the opportunities that power management solutions can bring to their business.

6. Donna Grothjan

VP, Worldwide Channels

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company

Donna Grothjan has been driving peak results by keeping Aruba’s channel program consistent and easy to use. Key to her strategy is driving home the benefits of Aruba’s open architecture so partners have multiple paths to solutions success.

5. Eric Martorano

Chief Revenue Officer


Eric Martorano has masterminded an all-out channel blitz designed to help Intermedia double in size, dominate the SMB UCaaS market and drive 25 percent margins for partners. He’s delivered the right products and seized opportunities to become a greater share of partners’ business.

4. Frank Rauch

VP, Americas Partner Organization


Frank Rauch has been at the forefront of VMware’s emphasis on its channel roots. He has spearheaded efforts to help partners embrace new technologies like vSAN hyper-converged infrastructure and NSX, as well as the VMware Cloud on AWS hybrid service.

3. Jason Kimrey

GM, U.S. Channel Scale, Partners


Taking the role of U.S. channel chief at the beginning of the year, Jason Kimrey has made his priorities clear: support Intel’s partner ecosystem and invest in artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things and memory to keep ahead of the next wave of innovation.

2. Joyce Mullen

President, Global Channel, OEM and IoT Solutions

Dell EMC

As channel chief of the largest vendor in the IT industry, Joyce Mullen is focused on making the most of the company’s channel investments. Since taking the role last spring, she has zeroed in on predictability and partner profitability.

1. Terry Richardson

VP, North America Channels, Alliances

Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Solution providers say there is simply not a more effective channel sales leader than Terry Richardson, a 30-yearplus veteran known for creating win-win scenarios in the sales trenches.

Richardson’s channel smarts and enterprise solutions savvy are propelling what HPE partners call the most lucrative channel program in the business, with unmatched incentives around a finely honed group of high-value innovation that includes GreenLake Flex Capacity, SimpliVity, Nimble, 3Par and Synergy.

His biggest accomplishment this year may well be helping drive the superior channel economics on the pay-per-use GreenLake Flex Capacity, which provides partners with an on-premises model that for the first time gives them a viable alternative to sell against public cloud. Richardson calls GreenLake the most ’significant’ partner opportunity he has seen in his career.