by Martha Heller

New CIOs at Timken, Unisys, Hartford and more….

Mar 13, 20094 mins

While I realize that my role in this blog is simply to point out CIO placement activity, I cannot but use this platform to do a little career counseling.

What I am hearing, both from CIOs on the market and from my own clients, is that companies are getting much more specific about the requirements they look for in their candidates.  Six months ago, a company might have been flexible about specific industry or technology requirements for a role, given the need to think outside the box in a tight market.  Now, with the increased supply of qualified executives on the one hand, and the low tolerance for risk on the other, many companies will only consider a square peg for their square opening.

How to translate this trend into a job search strategy?  Go for any opportunity that drops in your lap, but focus your proactive efforts on those companies that fall right in your sweet spot.  You are likely to get more bang for your efforts.

Now, onto our regularly scheduled programming…The “new CIO” information highway is pretty crowded with discussions about our recently appointed federal CIO, but I was able to eke out some non-Obama news as well.  To wit:

Vince Kellen, has left his role as VP of IS at DePaul University for the CIO role at the University of Kentucky.  Higher education is a good industry to be in right now; congrats to Vince.

In the gaming industry, David Farlin, formerly CIO of Echelon, a project that was in partnership between MGM and Boyd Gaming, was recently given the CIO role for all of Boyd Gaming. 

And Larry Fretz was named VP of IT position for Cosmopolitan Resort Casino, a swank resort being built on the Las Vegas strip. 

Omniflight Helicopters, which provides air medical services, named Cheryl Nolan as CIO. Cheryl comes to Omniflight from India-based Infosys.

Steve Holt, yet another entry in our “CIOs turned CEOs” has left his role at Accuride for the position of President and CEO of TechnOptics, a privately held specialty graphics and optics engineering company. Steve selected David Stefanich as his CIO successor at Accuride.

Steve Shaffer, left his role as JetBlue’s Director of Airline IT Operations to join Airline Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) as their first CIO.

Jon Elsasser, CIO of Timken, has announced his retirement. He is succeeded by long time Timken executive, Daniel Muller.  As Jon reflects on his tenure at Timken, he “takes great satisfaction in building an organization with the ability to support our global SAP instance and that demonstrates excellence in project management, demand management and strategic alignment.”

Back to the federal government, Richard Mangogna, CIO at the US Department of Homeland Security, announced his resignation which became effective the end of February.  Last time I checked, DHS had not named a successor. (Write and tell me if I’m wrong…)

Unisys Corporation appointed Suresh Mathews has its new CIO. Before joining Unisys, Mathews was CIO at Interstate Brands.

Eric Rosenfeld, recently CIO of MedeFile has been named SVP of IT at Gordian Health Solutions, a division of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennesee.

Richard Maranville has left his role as CIO at FedEx Kinkos for the CIO spot at The Freemen Company. I just spoke to Rich who is “excited to join the industry leader in the events services market, and to bring them the strategic advantage of technology.” 

UNICA, an enterprise marketing management company, recently announced the appointment of Gerry Wilson to the position of CIO.

Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. has named Mark Esposito as its chief information officer for life operations. Mark has served as the acting CIO since October 2008. (Congratulations to Mark on this; it is not so easy to survive an “acting” engagement.)

Guaranty Bank of Dallas hired John Petrey as its CIO. John, who had been the CIO of TD Banknorth since 2001, “took the job because it offered the opportunity to make a difference with full support of an outstanding executive management team.”

And finally, back in November 2008, during the Movers & Shakers hiatus, Fred Kauber joined Entitle Direct Group, as the organization’s first CIO. Fred joins the company from First Data Corporation, which incidentally named Bob DeRodes, Home Depot’s former CIO, as its new corporate CTO.

That’s it for this week. Let’s all sit very quietly and let the Dow continue its upward climb, and in the meantime, send me news…

Martha Heller

Managing Director, IT Leadership Practice

ZRG Partners