May 25, 2018 – Executive search firm TillmanCarlson has placed Tony Buttrick as the chief information officer for Wintrust Financial Corp. in Chicago.
Mr. Buttrick previously served as the CIO of Flagstar Bank for three years preceded by 10 years with Bank of America in several global technology and risk management positions. Before joining B of A, he spent three years with Fidelity Investments in a CIO role, and he began his career with the U.S. Navy. Mr. Buttrick served on active duty for 16 years in various special operations and intelligence assignments followed by seven years with the Department of Defense in the Office of Naval Intelligence. While working in intelligence, he led the government’s state-of-the-art imaging facility and served as an advisor to the Central Intelligence Agency and as the chief technical officer for the digital production program office.
“Wintrust is one of the most successful regional banks in the country, built on the strength of its community bank strategy and the quality and tenure of its management team,” said Rob Tillman, founding partner of TillmanCarlson. “Tony brings extensive experience in larger bank environments combined with the leadership style and values well suited to join the team and prepare Wintrust for continued growth. We’re extremely pleased with the outcome and proud to have been selected to partner with Wintrust on this important search.”
Wintrust is a financial holding company with more than 150 community bank locations in and around Chicago, northern Illinois, southern Wisconsin and northwest Indiana through its 15 community bank subsidiaries. It also provides mortgage banking, wealth management and insurance financing through its non-bank subsidiaries.
TillmanCarlson is an executive search and coaching firm led by its founders. Since launching the organization in 2002, Mr. Tillman and Kelly Carlson have conducted upwards of 350 searches and coached hundreds of leaders. Based in Chicago, the firm specializes in recruiting and coaching CEOs, CFOs and CIOs.
In January, TillmanCarlson named Ms. Carlson as its president and CEO. Her promotion sets the stage for growth, innovation and the ability to provide a clear alternative to larger human capital groups, said the firm. Ms. Carlson joined Mr. Tillman a year after the search firm was founded after having worked with him in her previous role for Russell Reynolds Associates. For eight years, she was in Russell Reynolds’ Chicago office as member of its technology practice.
The chief information officer is considered among the most strategic roles in any organization. Executive search consultants who specialize in recruiting for the position say that the best CIOs can dramatically differentiate a company in the market, while a poorly performing one can be an organization’s weakest link. Still, headhunting within the function remains challenging, and skilled C-suite IT professionals are among the toughest to find.
It only makes sense that CIO hiring and recruiting information technology teams are on the rise. Nearly a quarter (22 percent) of U.S. CIOs plan to expand their IT teams, according to the Robert Half Technology “IT Hiring Forecast Trend Report.” It represents a three point rise from the beginning of last year and an eight percentage point jump from one year ago.
In recent months, a number of organizations have turned to executive search firms to help them find top flight CIOs. Here are a few of the top assignments tracked by Hunt Scanlon Media:
The latest specialized segment within the college and university spectrum to surface: finding leaders for academic research and information technology. Harris Search Associates, based in Dublin, OH, is considered one of the top search boutiques in this thriving area. The firm recently placed Amy Belew as chief information officer for the University of Tennessee at Martin.
New Zealand-based executive recruiting firm Ichor Leadership Search placed Alastair Turrell into the position of CIO at the Department of Corrections. Mr. Turrell was most recently director of the software division at Datacom, a strategic leadership role he held over a decade
Major, Lindsey & Africa placed Matt Tader as CIO at AmLaw 200 firm Ice Miller. The assignment was led by partner Amanda K. Brady along with managing director Dustin Laws. “Matt’s strong record of developing and executing turnarounds involving significant change with processes, people and technology, ideally position him to drive process efficiencies […]” said Ms. Brady.
Howard Fischer Associates (HFA) has placed Nassar Nizami as chief information officer of Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health. Most recently, Mr. Nizami was vice president for information technology at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Prior to that, he served in several senior IT roles at Yale New Haven Health System.
McDermott & Bull placed Eric Wilson as CIO with SAFE Credit Union, one of the largest credit unions in California. The search was led by Brandon Biegenzahn, president of the firm and co-chair of its financial institutions practice, along with associate principal consultant Michelle Davis and senior recruiting associate Shree Thakarar.
The Human Capital Group recruited David Bernard as senior vice president and CIO for Dean Foods. Steve Hayes, founder and senior partner, led the assignment. Mr. Bernard joins Dean Foods from PepsiCo, where he most recently served as a member of their global executive IT leadership team.
West Virginia University appointed Barbara Dawson as associate provost for information technology and CIO. The firm enlisted Next Generation Executive Search to fill this top IT role. Mary Beth Baker and Phil Goldstein, managing partners at Next Generation, led the assignment.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media