Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - 44

2 017 P R O F E S S I O N A L A W A R D S

➽ "I will engage with

people working on
projects in my
organization to see
where they are. If I
ask a question and
they are fumbling,
I know they are
struggling. Then I
will work to figure
out what they need
to succeed."

EXECUTIVE
EXCELLENCE

Gary
Burnette

W

hen Gary
Burnette was
finishing up his
degree in
computer
science in 1983, he knew exactly
what he wanted to do with it:
work at IBM. "There was no
better place to be," recalls
Burnette, who remembers
poring over glossy IBM
brochures that detailed
innovations the company was
driving. "I was hoping I could
get into a company that was

44 WINDS OF CHANGE * FALL 2017

advancing technology beyond
everyone else and be a part of
something on the edge."
But Burnette had a problem.
IBM was not recruiting at his
school, East Tennessee State
University. So he decided to
take matters into his own
hands. Burnette wrote a cover
letter and sent it with his
resume to IBM's office in
Raleigh, N.C. "To my surprise, I
got a call for an interview," says
Burnette, this year's winner of
the Executive Excellence Award.

Three-plus decades later,
Burnette remains with IBM,
where he currently fills the role of
vice president, data integration.
Within the company's chief data
office, Burnette leads a team
incorporating data from
companies IBM has acquired into
an enterprise-wide platform that
can be used to improve IBM's
overall business performance and
results. It's just the latest in a long
progression of positions - everything from software developer to
marketer to a divisional chief

information officer for sales and
marketing leading a global team
of more than 3,000 information
technology professionals - that
have given Burnette a unique
perspective on how the company
actually functions.
Though his positions and
responsibilities have changed over
the years, Burnette has retained a
core philosophy about leadership
that is rooted in the trust of those
who work for him. "I have a basic
belief that most people are here to
do their job and to do the best
aises.org

COURTESY OF IBM

CHEROENHAKA (NOTTOWAY)
INDIAN TRIBE


http://www.aises.org

Winds of Change - Fall 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Winds of Change - Fall 2017

Contents
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Intro
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Cover1
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Cover2
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Contents
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - 2
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - 3
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - 4
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Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Cover3
Winds of Change - Fall 2017 - Cover4
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