Database marketing agency Merkle promoted two technology executives today. Barry Smith was appointed CIO, and Christian Wright was named CTO (a new title for the company). Smith has worked for Merkle since 2004, when he was hired as VP of IT. Prior to joining the Lanham, Md.-based company, he was the IT director for the City of Gaithersburg, Md. Previously, he worked for Coopers & Lybrand, Marriott and NetDynamics (now a division of Sun Microsystems.) Wright most recently served as Merkle's VP of product development. He has 10 years of experience developing enterprise software for companies such as First Union, Wells Fargo and Capital One. Innovative Food Holdings filled its newly created CIO position with John McDonald. McDonald, who has over 20 years of experience in finance and IT, will also be in charge of some of the Naples, Fla.-based company's accounting. Laurie Simon joined IT outsourcer CompuCom Systems as its CIO on Monday, December 3. She reports to COO Jeff Frick. This is her first CIO post. Most recently, Simon worked for EDS as a client delivery executive responsible for managing mobile communications and help desk support. Earlier in her tenure at EDS, she led program delivery for one of the company's largest accounts. Prior to EDS, Simon worked for Capital One Auto finance as an IT manager and for Texas Utilities as an IT director in charge of call center operations, customer operations and global delivery. Simon has a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Tulane University and an MBA from Southern Methodist University. Golden Living, a provider of healthcare services for seniors, hired John Derr as its SVP and CIO. Derr has 40 years of experience in the healthcare industry. He has held senior marketing, product development and management positions at healthcare companies including Squibb, Searle, Siemens, MediSpan, Kyocera and National Medical Enterprises. Most recently he was executive director of the Foundation for the Advancement of Care for the Elderly (FACE). PlumChoice plucked a former Monster.com executive as its CIO. Paul Neilson, Monster's former SVP of technology, joined the provider of PC services on Monday. Before Monster, Neilson was global technical services director for Thomson Global Markets. He holds a B.S.B.A. from Boston University and a MBA from Suffolk University.