Pat Townsend Secure with New President
Published: July 20, 2009
by Dan Burger
Patrick Townsend Security Solutions (PTSS), one of the best-known security software developers in the IBM i OS market, has hired John Earl as its president and chief executive officer.
Earl is one of the i community's most familiar faces. He's the former chief technology officer and a vice president at PowerTech (a company he founded with others) and a long-time volunteer at the COMMON user group, where he has served on the board of directors and is currently a security subject matter expert for that organization. His IT career spans nearly 30 years.
Patrick Townsend, PTSS founder and president until Earl's hiring last week, has become chairman of the board and chief technology officer.
Earl only recently left PowerTech to start a consulting business called iSecurity Experts, which was reported in the June 30 issue of Four Hundred Stuff. Since that time, he was contacted by Townsend and subsequently offered the president and CEO position.
The basic concepts and principles of security that Earl brings from his past will translate well to the new assignment, Earl says, while acknowledging no product overlap whatsoever. However, he sees implementable business processes arising from his experience translating compliance requirements from standards such as SOX, HIPPA, and PCI.
"This is a bit of a shift from the host-based security and compliance monitoring that PowerTech does," Earl says. "Now my focus will be on encryption and secure data transfer. It's a tremendous technology. Pat Townsend was able to convince me--on the strength of the technology alone--that this is a great place to be."
The day-to-day business at PTSS will be handled by Earl, who will be in charge of a 20-person staff that includes product development, customer support, sales, administration, and marketing.
"This is a successful company, so it's just a matter of refining processes and practices and taking the company up another notch. It's a great growth situation here," he says. "Patrick is an incredible technologist. His grasp of security, especially as it applies to encryption and key management solutions, is top drawer and there are other individuals in the company that are right there at a level with Patrick."
The i platform is the home base for PTSS. It has a strong customer base, and Earl says there is great rapport between the company and its customers. Although PTSS technologies have proved useful to i shops, the company also has customers that apply PTSS technology to other platforms. Network-enforced key management is the primary example.
"This is technology that we will be able to drive forward," Earl says. "The future in front of this company has a lot of open field. It's a matter of us executing on the technology we have and the technology that is in our roadmap."
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