At Extreme, we work hard to foster a culture of diversity, opportunity, and advancement. And it is with a great pleasure that we can announce that six extraordinary women of the Extreme family: Natalia Vianden, Lorna Pierno, Kate Price, Brenda Richardson, Kilynn Sommer, and SarahJane Walshe have been recognized in the CRN 2021 Women of the Channel awards!
The CRN magazine’s awards aim to celebrate and recognize women from all areas and levels in the channel – from graduate newcomers to top leaders and entrepreneurs. Recognizing the unique strengths, vision, and achievements of a select group of women, this prestigious annual list acknowledges channel leaders who are blazing a trail for future generations.
This year, CRN honored over 1000 women whose channel expertise and vision are deserving of recognition. 6 of these extraordinary ladies work at Extreme!
Let’s give a big shout out to:
- Natalia Vianden, Director of Global Channel Programs. An experienced channel professional who has been with Extreme and the networking industry for over 20 years, launched and spearheads our Global Channel Partner Program. On top of being named a 2021 Women of the Channel, Natalia was also selected for the WOTC Power 100 list for the THIRD time!
- Lorna Pierno, Director of Channel Marketing. A results-oriented and innovative marketing professional with 20+ years of experience in the networking industry, directs our global channel demand generation and communications initiatives.
- Kate Price, Senior Manager of Global Channel Operations. An experienced channel professional with over 15 years of service at Extreme across operations, programs, sales, and the channel, manages our global channel operations.
- Brenda Richardson, Senior Director, Head of Channels, Americas. A passionate and experienced channel sales executive with over 20 years of experience in the IT industry, leads our Americas channel sales strategy.
- Kilynn Sommer, Senior Director of Channel Marketing & Partner Programs. A bilingual marketing leader with a proven track record of driving growth and organizational effectiveness, leads our global channel marketing and partner programs.
- SarahJane Walshe, Manager of Distribution Marketing, Americas. A skilled marketing professional with leadership experience in digital content and corporate communications, drives our distribution marketing efforts for the Americas.
The challenge of increasing diversity in tech is now firmly on the agenda across the industry. We believe that shouting about the accomplishments of women can play an important role in tackling diversity in the channel. At Extreme, we are committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace and we put our money where our mouth is.
When we launched our Women’s Leadership Council three years ago, the number of women at Extreme Networks was around 18%. Over the past 3 years, we’ve increased our population of female employees by 30%. To attract and retain female employees, the Women’s Leadership Council, our first Employee Resource Group, worked with the executive team and HR to implement female-friendly policies, strong professional development opportunities, on-the-job leadership training, and a formal mentorship program.
Our teams and Employee Resource Groups work to cultivate an atmosphere where all employees thrive because of their differences, not despite them.