Polachi Recruits CTO at Henry Schein Inc.

Polachi Henry Schein Christopher Pendergast CTO

April 24, 2018 – Demand for top technology executives continues to gain momentum. Chief technology officer hiring, in fact, is expected to grow 18 percent by 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. It’s a trend that is keeping executive search firms well occupied.

Assisted by search firm Polachi Inc., Henry Schein Inc., a provider of healthcare products and services to office-based dental, animal health and medical practitioners, recently placed Christopher Pendergast as its senior vice president and chief technology officer (CTO).

In his new role, Mr. Pendergast will be responsible for the overall leadership of the global technology function, which includes global information systems, cyber security and the Henry Schein Global Innovation Center. He will play a key role in shaping the company’s global technology agenda and helping to accelerate and manage the introduction of innovation for Henry Schein.

“In today’s economy, almost every major corporation is on a journey of digital transformation,” said Stanley M. Bergman, chairman and CEO of Henry Schein. “Harnessing technology is critical to our growth and to competing in ever-changing markets. With more than 30 years of experience leading large-scale global IT organizations, Chris will be especially valuable to us as we continue to execute our digital and technology strategies.”

Mr. Pendergast most recently served as CTO for VSP Global, which provides products and services to eye care professionals, employers, and members. Before that, he held roles of increasing responsibility at Natural Organics, Inc., IdeaSphere Inc./Twinlab Corp., and IBM Corp.

“I’m excited to join Henry Schein at a time when the entire technology industry is in a period of rapid evolution,” said Mr. Pendergast. “The technology team plays an important role in Henry Schein’s digital transformation and is vitally important in paving the way for innovation and ensuring that information technology remains a competitive advantage for the company.”

Polachi provides access executive search services to technology, clean technology, private equity and venture capital companies. The firm recruits executive leaders for a company roster that includes Aspen Technology, Bottomline Technologies, Attunity, Cognizant Technologies, MAM Software, Trillium Software/Harte Hanks, FleetMatics, Lionbridge, Sparta Systems, Sevcon, Epsilon, Cognex, Plug Power, Mediamorph, Witricity, BlueConic, Perkins School, Knoa, and Visual IQ, among others.

Technology Heats Up

The booming technology sector, vibrant even when the economy was softer, shows little sign of retreat, according to a host of recruiters who service the talent needs of companies across the field. It continues, in fact, to produce capabilities and services that few imagined just a decade ago.

Yet a recently conducted survey of global executives by Odgers Berndtson and Forrester Research revealed that 84 percent of companies lack the necessary talent base to execute a digital transformation.

The ubiquitous deployment of technology across the globe has made mobile, big data, e-commerce and social media highly competitive sectors for talent,” said Charley Polachi, co-founder and partner of Polachi Access Executive Search. He said he is also seeing a growing frequency and awareness of hacking and data breaches, putting cybersecurity leaders in big demand.

Recruiting CTOs

A number of executive search firms have placed CTOs in recent months. Here’s a look at a few from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:

Specialist recruiters Turnkey Sports and Entertainment has placed former Tampa Bay Lightning executive Sean Walker as the Philadelphia Phillies’ new CTO. Mr. Walker has 19 years of technology and information systems experience in highly visible sports environments where he was responsible for strategic IT planning and project execution. 

Rockville, MD-headquartered executive search firm JDG Associates recently recruited Vijay Desai as chief technology officer of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board in Washington, D.C. President Darren DeGioia led the assignment. Previously, Mr. Desai was head of IT operations at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

CA-based search firm McDermott & Bull placed Jonathan Bourgoine as CTO with Nasdaq-traded Stamps.com, a provider of postage online and shipping software solutions. This executive recruiting engagement was conducted by partner Craig Lipus, principal consultant Garrett Lipus, and senior recruiting associate Brian Selvey. Mr. Bourgoine previously served as VP and chief …

Accelent recently placed Andreas Bayer as the CTO of Beam Solutions in San Francisco. Managing director John Boehmer led the assignment along with partner Maura McShane. Mr. Bayer has over 20 years of experience delivering software solutions to the financial industry. 

The Lancer Group, a La Jolla, CA-headquartered executive search firm, recently placed Bjorn Bjerkoe as CTO of Daxko, a provider of member-based health and wellness software solutions. Mr. Bjerkoe has over 15 years of experience leading operational and software development teams across the application software space.

ON Partners recruited Krishna Vedula as CTO of 365 Retail Markets. Mr. Vedula brings 20 years of experience leading global technology organizations in companies experiencing explosive growth, both organic and inorganic. He will be integral to 365’s efforts to increase its market share and new product introductions.

McDermott & Bull placed former IBM executive David Bartlett as CTO with Panasonic Avionics Corp. The search was conducted by Rod McDermott, CEO and co-founder; Craig Sabina, principal consultant; Jared Moriarty, associate principal consultant; and Amanda Lange, recruiting associate.

Search Solution Group placed Dr. Harish Hiriyannaiah as CTO of Sonavex. The search was spearheaded by Ashley Bowman, business development manager, and Josh Mensinger, recruiting leader. Dr. Hiriyannaiah has an extensive background in image processing, medical imaging and machine learning technologies.

The McCormick Group placed David Mihelcic as chief technology and strategy officer at Juniper Federal. Mr. Mihelcic is the former chief technology officer at the Defense Information Systems Agency. In his new role, Mr. Mihelcic will drive technological innovation and new product development for the company.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Will Schatz, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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