by Meridith Levinson

CIOs Promoted to CEO and COO at Pegasus Solutions and Vital Signs

Jun 18, 20085 mins

Plus: Bob DeRodes scores another board appointment; Bank of America puts its chief technology and operations exec in charge of consumer mortgage lending business; Becky Wanta joins a new company and much more.

Mike Kistner’s career is flying high. He landed in the CEO role at Pegasus Solutions, a provider of airline and hotel reservation systems, on June 10, 2008. Kistner, 51, most recently served as Pegasus Solutions’ COO. He succeeds John Davis, “who has chosen this time to pursue other opportunities, following Pegasus’ successful launch of the market-leading RezViewNG reservation system,” according to the press release announcing Kistner’s appointment.

Kistner has spent his entire career in the travel services industry. Prior to joining Pegasus Solutions as its SVP of operations and service delivery in 2005, Kistner was CIO and SVP of distribution at Best Western International. Before that, he was an SVP with Cendant. He also previously served as Super 8 Motels‘ EVP of operations and as VP of MIS and reservations at HFS Inc. Kistner holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting and information systems from Northern State University in Aberdeen, S.D. He earned a Master of Science in information systems from Colorado State University. Kistner is the past chairman and current member of the e-commerce committee of the American Hotel & Lodging Association.

Bob DeRodes has joined a second board of directors since he announced his decision to leave his post as EVP and CIO of Home Depot in early April. Veracode, a provider of application security testing solutions, announced it had appointed DeRodes to its board of directors on June 9.

Former BellSouth CIO Fran Dramis was appointed to Netezza‘s board of directors. Dramis left his post as EVP, CIO and e-commerce and security officer of the telecom in early 2007, after it was acquired by AT&T. Since then, he started his own IT consulting company. Dramis also serves on RealOps‘ board of directors. Dramis has appeared in a number of CIO articles over the years, including one on his mentoring strategy and another on IT’s role in social responsibility.

Bank of America is banking on its chief technology and operations officer to lead consumer real estate operations for the company after it completes its acquisition of Countrywide Financial. Bank of America appointed Barbara Desoer, 55, president of Countrywide and BofA’s consumer real estate business on May 28th. In her new role, Desoer continues to report to Chairman and CEO Ken Lewis and is based in Calabasas, Calif.

Desoer has worked for Bank of America since 1977 and held leadership positions in commercial lending, credit administration and retail banking before being named group executive vice president with responsibilities for the California Retail Banking Group in 1996. Two years later she earned another promotion, to president of Northern California banking. She was then switched into marketing in 1999 before being named consumer products executive. She was appointed chief technology and operations officer in 2005.

Marc Gordon was named CTO of Bank of America. He reports to the CFO, Joe Price.

Countrywide Financial’s CIO Richard Jones left the company before the BofA deal was publicly announced and took a new CIO job with Fiserv in January 2008.

Medical products manufacturer Vital Signs promoted its CIO Alex Chanin to COO on June 11. He retains his CIO responsibilities and reports to Vital Signs’ CEO Terry Wall. Chanin has served as the Totawa, N.J.-based company’s EVP and CIO since January 2004. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Drexel University and a Master of Science in computer engineering from Princeton.

Health insurance company WellPoint is realigning its operations, technology and government services unit due to the retirement of Mark Boxer, president of the unit. Boxer is leaving WellPoint on July 1 to teach business at the college-level, to conduct public policy research in healthcare and to spend more time doing non-profit work. The company is not replacing Boxer. Movers and Shakers has tracked Boxer’s career path at WellPoint from the time he was appointed CIO in 2005 to when he was named president and CEO of the operations, technology and government services unit. During that time, he was appointed to the board of FinishMaster.

WellPoint named its SVP of enterprise solutions, Lori Beer, acting CIO. She reports directly to WellPoint CEO and president Angela Braly. WellPoint has started an internal and exteral search to permanently fill the CIO role. Movers & Shakers has covered the odds of interim CIOs getting the permanent CIO role.

State Compensation Insurance Fund hired Becky Wanta on a contract basis as its interim CIO. Wanta most recently served as Best Buy’s North American CIO. Prior to joining Best Buy in October 2007, Wanta was Pepsico‘s CTO. She also previously served as CTO of Wells Fargo and the Money store. Wanta holds MBA degress from the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington and from Golden Gate University.

Netuitive, a provider of IT performance management software, appointed Rahul Merchant to its board of directors. Merchant currently serves as EVP and CIO of Fannie Mae.