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8/15/2003
04:09 PM
John Soat
John Soat
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IT Confidential: New Job, New Office: It's All A Crapshoot

The Long Shot But ROI Favorite: Gary Coleman, At 500-To-1 Against

Talk about your long, strange trips! Darwin John, former CIO of General Mills, former CIO of Scott Paper, former head of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' genealogical database project, and former CIO of the FBI (and former editorial advisory board member of InformationWeek) has surfaced again, this time as a "strategic adviser" to Blackwell Consulting Services, a Chicago IT services firm. Blackwell, which describes itself as "the largest minority-owned IT and management consulting firm in the Midwest," said in a statement that John will not only bring "an extensive network of IT contacts that open doors" but also will provide "leadership, mentoring, and strategic planning and development skills" to its 240 full-time consultants. John, who was CIO at the FBI from July 2002 till last May, has long been considered one of the leading innovators and strategic thinkers in the field of business technology. He's also credited with being one of the first IT executives to have the title of CIO.

Smart job move? Thirty-year AT&T veteran Richard Roscitt has signed on to become president and chief operating officer of MCI. Since Michael Capellas came on board as chairman and CEO of the telecom company seven months ago, MCI (formerly WorldCom) has replaced its CFO, general counsel, executive VP of human resources, and chief of staff, as it struggles to recover from bankruptcy, scandal, and federal fraud investigations--including the latest examination of charges that the company illegally routed calls through Canada to avoid paying other carriers' connection fees. Roscitt most recently served as chairman and CEO of ADC Telecommunications.

It's called a closed gene pool. Dave Orrico, Siebel Systems' Eastern sales manager, last week left the struggling CRM vendor to join archrival Salesforce.com, which provides online hosted CRM applications. Orrico will head Salesforce's domestic, Canadian, and Latin American sales efforts. Before Siebel, Orrico worked at Oracle with Salesforce founder and CEO Marc Benioff. "It was great to work with Dave while I was at Oracle, and it is wonderful to have him join our winning team," Benioff said in a statement. Orrico joins director Craig Ramsey and senior VP and general manager Steve Garnett among the Siebel expatriates who've jumped ship to Salesforce.

Online gambling sites are having a field day with the California governor recall election. How's the smart money laying out? BoDog Sportsbook & Casino (www.bodog .com) has Arnold Schwarzenegger as 10-to-1 favorite to take current Gov. Gray Davis' job, which makes him the leader of the pack but a bad bet strictly in terms of ROI.

One question: Was that before or after Bill Clinton signed on to help Davis? If anything, Arnold's chances just got better. And I'm hoping my chances of getting an industry tip are pretty good. Send one to jsoat@cmp.com or phone 516-562-5326. If you want to talk about job opportunities in IT, MCI's chances of survival, or the California recall race, meet me at InformationWeek.com's Listening Post: informationweek.com/forum/johnsoat.

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