Movers & Shakers: IBM Loses 2 CIOs, Florida Hires First Data Chief

At Enterprise Mobility Exchange, we focus on the challenges enterprises face in the world of mobile transformation, and how those obstacles are overcome with technological advancement. What’s often not discussed, however, is the “who” behind these massive corporations and how they impact business practices.

In this column, titled Movers & Shakers, we’ll focus on which IT executives are making moves within the industry and what it means to their respective companies.

Embattled Former IBM CIO Shifts Gears, Changes Industries
Jeff Smith, the former IBM Cloud Chief Information Officer, found himself in a peculiar situation earlier this year when he left the organization for Amazon Web Services. IBM wasn’t impressed by one of its top executives heading to a direct competitor, so they wound up filing suit against Smith for allegedly violating a non-compete agreement, which then led to a temporary restraining order in August barring Smith from starting work at AWS. Fast forward to mid-October, and it was announced that Smith signed on as Chief Operating Officer for World Fuel Services in Miami, Florida.
See related: Movers & Shakers: IBM Sues CIO, IT Execs Change Industries

IoT, Cloud Innovator Takes Talents To AI Startup
To leave her position at IBM, Linda Bernandi must have a great hunch about her new gig. The Chief Innovation Officer for IBM’s IoT and Cloud departments signed on as Chief Product and Strategy Officer for Montreal-based startup Element AI. The company is building artificial intelligence platforms for enterprises, and Bernandi isn’t the only one who sees a bright future with the company: In its first full year, Element raised a jaw-dropping $102 million in funding to push its progress.
See related: 7 Essential AI Terms: What Do They Mean?

Florida Bets On Data, Hires First State CDO
The Sunshine State is going deep on the amount of data it produces across all its government agencies, and implementing its first-ever Chief Data Officer. The state didn’t have to look far to fill the slot, bringing in Nancy Sampson, the former Information Technology Services director for the state Department of Financial Services, Division of Rehabilitation and Liquidation. Sampson is charged with defining a vision and strategy for state data management and governance.
See related: Intel Sales VP Becomes Baltimore CIO

Home Depot IT Head Becomes DICK’S CTO
From housewares to homeruns, Paul Gaffney is staying within the retail industry, but shifting focus. The former Home Depot VP of Information Technology, begins his new job with DICK’S as Chief Technology Officer this month, where he’ll be responsible for all digital transformation efforts, including infrastructure, eCommerce, and evolving platforms.

What’s the reason behind the constant unrest in the c-suite? Are IT executives geared toward finding new challenges and leaping hurdles for new successes? Or are they just becoming as fluid as the technology space in their charge?

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