by Martha Heller

Will 2010 be the year of CIO retirements?

Jan 29, 2010

Will 2010 be the year of CIO retirements?

I am betting that 2010 will be the year of CIO retirements.   CIOs who were ready to retire in 2008, but held off in 2009, may well decide that the golf course is getting impatient and the data center is getting old. We are only one month into the New Year, and already I have received a number of notes and calls from CIOs telling me to get ready to announce their retirement a few months down the road.  The good news for job seekers is clear: retirements mean open positions if the executive committee does not hire from within.  But for CEOs, the news is less rosy.  There are far fewer Gen Xers than Baby Boomers, and companies may find it challenging to fill their top IT spot with mature executives. (Those of in the recruiting field won’t mind helping them out…)

On that note…After 34 years with Graybar, Steve Becker is retiring in March. Of his many accomplishments as CIO, Steve counts the successful deployment of an SAP system as one of the most significant. “We are supporting the business better than we ever have,” he says. “The economy affected us as much as everyone else, but we are in a great position now with positive cash flow. The efficiencies we gained from our deployment paid for our entire implementation by three or four times.” Steve’s advice to new CIOs: “Surround yourself with good people, set clear expectations, and then get out of their way.”

Succeeding Steve, effective April 1, is Scott Clifford, a 15-year veteran of the company and currently serves as Director IT Planning and Process Improvement. 

Tom Keiser is Gap Inc.’s new CIO.  Through his 20-year career, Keiser has led major global technology initiatives for consumer product and retail companies. Most recently, as EVP and CIO for Limited Brands, he spearheaded a multi-year, transformational program to build a new business and technology operating model that supported both current and future business needs. During 12 years with Ernst & Young, his international expertise grew as he managed the rollout of 15 major systems in Europe and the Middle East.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has named Carole Wallace Post, the director of agency services in the Mayor’s Office of Operations, to replace Paul Cosgrave as commissioner of the city’s Department of IT and Telecommunications..

Pegasus Solutions announced the appointments of Mark Peacock to CIO.  The appointments were made by Mike Kistner, president, CEO and chairman of the board of Pegasus Solutions.  (Kirstner used to be a CIO himself.)  Peacock comes to Pegasus with more than 20 years of hands-on experience optimizing company investments in IT, most recently in the IT Effectiveness practice at Archstone Consulting, a consulting firm he helped found in 2003. Former CIO Aaron Shepherd will assume the role of Pegasus Fellow, with a focus on the strategic evolution of Pegasus’ next generation products.

MyShape, personalized online shopping and apparel company, has promoted Mercedes De Luca from CIO to President.  Before joining MyShape, De Luca served as VP & Chief Information Executive of Yahoo!  responsible for infrastructure, applications, strategy, architecture and the PMO, Prior to that, she was VP & Chief Information Executive Officer at Interwoven.

Chi-XŽGlobal Inc. announced that it has hired trading technology veteran Steven Silberstein as CIO.  Silberstein will be responsible for all aspects of the firm’s technology and leading the technology coordination between Chi-X Global’s market centers, its global trading participants and Chi-Tech’s trading technology development., a digital financial media company, recently announced today that Daniel Flax has been appointed CIO.  Flax brings nearly two decades of experience to  Most recently, he was the CIO for Cowen Group and Managing Director for the New York Stock Exchange.

Mocapay, a mobile experience platform, has appointed Will White to the CIO role.  White joins Mocapay with more than 25 years of experience with Fortune 100 companies across several industries during his career. Will previously served as the vice president of software engineering at Raymond James and has held senior technology positions, including CIO/EVP of Citigroup’s Diners Club International, CTO at US West and engineering management positions at NCR, Teradata and Boeing.

Equifax Inc. hired IT and financial services industries veteran David C. Webb as its new CIO. Webb has worked for Goldman Sachs, Bank One Corp., and GE Capital. He recently was chief operations officer for Santa Clara, Calif.-based Silicon Valley Bank.

Ed Granger-Happ has decided to retire from Save the Children, effective January 1, 2010.  He will continue his work as Chairman of NetHope, a consortium of NGO CIOs who work together to bring technology enabled relief to distressed parts of the world.

Patina Solutions, a professional services firm that focuses on high-quality, engagement-based employment for seasoned professionals,  has hired Robert Fronberry as Practice Director – Technology Services. Fronberry has more than 32 years of progressive experience, the last 17 years at the senior management level. He has held CIO positions with Solo Cup, Broan Nutone and Vivendi Water.

Thanks, as always, to everyone for sending me news.  I’ll be back with more in February.

Martha Heller

Martha HellerManaging Director

ZRG Partners