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November 15, 2019

Big Data Career Notes: November 2019 Edition

Mariana Iriarte

(Africa Studio/Shutterstock)

In this monthly feature, we’ll keep you up-to-date on the latest career developments for individuals in the big data community. Whether it’s a promotion, new company hire, or even an accolade, we’ve got the details. Check in each month for an updated list and you may even come across someone you know, or better yet, yourself!


Alison Davis

Collibra announced the appointment of Alison Davis to its Board of Directors. Davis will serve as Audit Chair and joins with over 30 years of experience building and advising high-growth companies. Davis is a co-founder of Fifth Era as well as an active investor, best-selling author, and frequent speaker on technology and innovation. She currently serves as a non-executive director of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), where she chairs the Technology and Innovation Committee, Fiserv (FISV) and Ooma (OOMA), where she chairs the Audit Committee and serves as the Chairman of the Advisory Board for BlockChain Capital. A native of the UK, she is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and holds a BA and an MA in Economics from Cambridge University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

“Collibra is on a rapid growth trajectory as an industry leader at the forefront of Data Intelligence,” Davis said. “I am looking forward to assisting Collibra in building on its strong momentum as the company continues to create innovative products to help customers unlock the value in their data.”

Alison Gleeson 

Elastic NV announced that Alison Gleeson was nominated to join its Board of Directors. According to Dutch law, Gleeson’s nomination to the Board of Directors is subject to a shareholder vote, expected to be held at a general shareholder meeting in January 2020. Upon her election to the Board, Gleeson will also be appointed to serve as a member of the Company’s Compensation Committee. Gleeson previously served as Senior Vice President of Cisco’s Americas organization. Gleeson was responsible for nearly 9,000 employees across 35 countries and is a highly-regarded international speaker on the drivers for digital disruption across industries, the role of technology in enabling business transformation, and empowering women in tech. Gleeson maintains a commitment to professional development, inclusion, and diversity in the workplace. In 2018, she received the Connected World’s “Woman of IoT” award for her role in advancing the field. In 2017, she received the Diversity Best Practice’s “Above and Beyond Legacy Award” and the Michigan Council for Women in Technology’s “Woman of the Year Award” for her work in advancing women in IT roles.  

“In my career, I’ve never seen greater urgency from enterprises across all industries to transform themselves using data, and search has become one of the foundational technologies to do just that,” Gleeson said. “Elastic has become synonymous with search technology as the need to instantly find relevant information and insights from large amounts of data has become a necessity for every enterprise. Elastic has an amazing footprint in the enterprise — I look forward to helping the company create a lasting go-to-market strategy focused on deepening and widening its customer and partner relationships to fuel its future growth.”

Victor Lund

Teradata announced that Victor Lund, the Executive Chairman of the Teradata Board of Directors, has been appointed Interim President and Chief Executive Officer. Upon mutual agreement between the Teradata board and Oliver Ratzesberger is no longer serving as President and Chief Executive Officer and he has resigned from Teradata’s board. Lund previously served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Teradata from May 2016 until his appointment as Executive Chairman in January 2019. Lund has been a member of Teradata’s board since 2007 and was the Chair of the Audit Committee from 2007 until May 2016. The Company’s Board of Directors has established a CEO Search Committee to lead the process to identify and select a permanent Chief Executive Officer.

“Oliver has been a leader and technology visionary since we began Teradata’s business transformation, and we thank him for his contributions,” Lund said. “Ultimately, the board decided that now is the right time to identify a new CEO to accelerate the execution of the transformation, in order to achieve our vision and growth strategy. The board remains confident that Teradata’s market-leading position in cloud-based data and analytics, talented team and strong foundation will drive us forward as we execute our transformation strategy, continue to innovate, and provide exceptional value to our customers through the power of data.”

Paul Mountford 

Pure Storage announced that Paul Mountford is joining as the company’s Chief Operating Officer (COO). Mountford will assume responsibility for Worldwide Sales and Sales Operations, Channels and Alliances, Marketing, and Customer Experience, including Global Support and Professional Services. Mountford brings over 30 years of senior sales and technology leadership experience, most recently at Riverbed as CEO and previously the Chief Sales Officer. Before Riverbed, he was CEO at Sentillian and held senior roles during his tenure at Cisco.

“I have long admired Pure for the company’s impressive journey of growth, as well as the ability to anticipate customer needs, and I am thrilled to work alongside this team,” Mountford said.

Kim Nelson

Teradata announced the election of Kim Nelson to its Board of Directors. Nelson has served as Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer of SPS Commerce, Inc., a provider of cloud-based supply chain management solutions worldwide, since 2007. Previously, she led investor relations and held senior finance positions at Amazon.com. Before Amazon, Nelson held positions in finance management at The Pillsbury Company (now General Mills) and Nestle’s beverage division.

“I am honored to join Teradata’s board at this pivotal time in the company’s history. Teradata is a company on the move and leading the conversation on the power of data and analytics,” Nelson said. “I am impressed with its focus on customer success, and I look forward to working as a part of the company’s board to build long-term value for our shareholders.”

Dr. Niels Nes

MonetDB Solutions has named Dr. Niels Nes as Chief Technology Officer, moving from his previous roles as senior database researcher and head of the ITF department at CWI to boost the company’s technological growth. Nes is a recognized pioneer in column-store technology and is a co-founder and technical advisor of MonetDB Solutions. For more than 20 years, he has been the driving force behind the open source database system MonetDB. Previous to MonetDB Solutions, Nes has co-founded VectorWise, another high performance columnar database system that was acquired by Actian in 2012. Nes holds a PhD. in computer science from the University of Amsterdam.

“It has been an amazing experience to establish MonetDB Solutions, and watch MonetDB transform from an academic product into industrial-grade product increasingly deployed by large enterprise customers,” Nes said. “I’m also thrilled to move into my new role in a team of top database engineers with whom I have worked many years. This step will allow me to focus my energy on expanding the product and working closely with the world’s most challenging business analytics applications.”

Amy O’Connor

Syncsort announced that Amy O’Connor joined its leadership team as Chief Data and Information Officer (CDIO). In this new role, she will leverage her data management, cloud, and IT expertise to scale information services and leverage data securely for Syncsort’s growing business. O’Connor joins Syncsort from Cloudera, where as CDIO she was responsible for the customer’s digital experience, internal business systems, data science and analytics, IT operations, and information security. She also had a leadership role in the integration effort associated with the Cloudera and Hortonworks merger and is well known in the space as a frequent keynote speaker and panelist at industry conferences on data management and technology.

“I am very excited to be joining Syncsort during this period of fast-paced expansion, as I know how rewarding it is to help lead a company that’s constantly finding inventive ways to support its customers,” O’Connor said. “I look forward to this exceptional opportunity to scale our services, data analytics, and information security to drive employee and customer satisfaction, build connected products, and mitigate business risk.”

Stuart Pann 

Groq Inc. announced that Stuart Pann joined its Board of Directors. Pann currently leads HP’s supply chain and previously led Intel’s General Management Group, where he was responsible for pricing, revenue, and forecasting for the microprocessor and chipset operations.

“I’m delighted to join the board of a company as interesting and innovative as Groq,” Pann said. “There’s a lot of excitement and growth, but also some hype in the AI sector right now. When I came to understand Groq’s new architecture and saw the company’s first silicon, early customer traction, and deployment to production capability, I knew that this company had placed itself at the forefront of chip architecture innovation, with a proven execution ability to match. I’m thrilled to be a part of this exciting team. Groq is a game-changer.”

Andy Walter 

Exasol announced the appointment of Andy Walter as a new member of Exasol’s U.S. advisory board. Walter has over 30 years of leadership experience and knowledge in strategy, development, execution, and operations across shared services, analytics, and IT. His career spanned a variety of assignments, including Global R&D, Product Supply & Manufacturing, Marketing, and International Sales & Operations. He also designed and led the Business Intelligence / Analytics journey across Procter and Gamble (P&G). Walter is currently working across public, private and non-profit boards, where he provides strategic level advisory. He also works across the Fortune 500 directly with C-Suite Executives on their digital and analytics transformations.  

“In working with P&G and other Fortune 500 Companies on their analytics transformation, the challenge of bringing together massive amounts of data to drive business-building analytics at the speed of business is critical,” Walter said. “Exasol solves this challenge and seamlessly integrates with existing environments and investments. They are a disruptive innovator!” 


To read last month’s edition of Career Notes, click here.

Do you know someone that should be included in next month’s list? If so, send us an email at [email protected]. We look forward to hearing from you.

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