Farmers Business Network Hires its First CIO

Farmers Business Network Inc.—a company that runs a platform for farmers to buy supplies from seed to pesticides— has hired its first CIO, Kumud Kokal.

Kokal, a former vice president of e-commerce firm Stitch Fix Inc., joined the seven-year-old, California-based network and platform in October in the newly created role. He brings experience in digital transformation, and IT transformation to drive innovative solutions across the company. His charterbis to optimize the company’s processes and technology to pass that innovation along to its growing network of farmer members.

FBN that has 33,500 members across the U.S., Canada and Australia and operates more than 25 warehouses says that digital innovation has never been more vital to a business and its customers than in the pandemic age. Its members agree to share data on seed performance, pricing, weather and other facets of the business. In return, they gain access to a repository of industry and product pricing information. The company’s cloud-based data software also tracks spatial data from farm machinery, as well as other metrics provided by farmers to help them score the carbon footprint of crops.

Kokal will lead the IT, infrastructure, and security teams - working closely across FBN's many departments, such as FBN Finance, Gradable, FBN Direct, R&D , and more to optimize workflows and technology, and in turn, get better products to farmers faster.

In other recent appointments and career moves:

The Millennia Companies has appointed Brad R. Blake as CIO. In his role, Blake will design and implement an information technology strategy that meets the enterprise's complex infrastructure and support needs. With more than 24 years of experience, including eight in the real estate industry, Blake has led organizational transformation through the strategic adoption and management of information technology solutions at organizations such as large hospitals and health care systems.

Healthcare navigation and care coordination company, Quantum Health has appointed Drew Domecq as CTO. Prior to joining Quantum Health, Domecq was executive vice president and CIO at Designer Brands (formerly DSW Inc.), where he was responsible for applying technology enablement to their growth strategy. Before Designer Brands, Domecq was CIO at Bob Evans and held technology leadership positions at The Wendy's Company; Vox Mobile, Inc.; Safelite Group, Inc.; and Qwest Communications International, Inc.

British software and services provider Advanced has appointed Narinder Sahota as its CTO. During the last 18 months, Advanced,has made seven acquisitions, launched 26 Cloud products, and is investing £32 million in Research & Development (R&D) this year. Narinder, who has more than 28 years’ technology experience, will be responsible for managing Advanced’s growing R&D facility and driving its technology strategy forward bringing innovative products and services to market driving value for the company’s 25,000 customers. He joins from Salesforce where he held various CTO positions and, more recently, was the European lead for its business transformation consulting practice. Prior to that, he spent over 22 years at Capgemini. He was the Account CTO for the one of the company’s largest digital accounts, Royal Mail Group, as well as Chief Architect at one of the world’s largest outsourcing deals, where he drove technology strategy and governance of a 160-strong architecture unit.

Canadian online grocery company Goodfood Market Corp. has appointed Bipasha Chiu as CTO. Most recently, Bipasha was the Vice President of Business Technology Solutions at the LCBO where she partnered with business leaders to develop the IT roadmap. Bipasha led her team to implement significant technology changes in the supply chain and retail stores as well as being involved in expanding the LCBO’s e-commerce solutions, Grocery and LCBO convenience Outlets, including SameDay Pickup. Previously, Bipasha was a Global Director at Apotex where she led several transformation initiatives including the implementation of Salesforce, SuccessFactors and SAP as well as numerous research and development initiatives. Prior to that, as a Vice President at Canadian Tire, Bipasha was responsible for Merchandising, Supply Chain and Finance transformation initiatives and developing their Digital Strategy.

And…

United States Securities and Exchange Commission has appointed Christopher Rieder as CIO

XVIII Airborne Corps has appointed Jared Summer as CTO.

State of Illinois has appointed Russ Kemple as CIO.

Jiffy Lube has appointed Chidi Alams as CIO.

University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority has appointed David Kunstman as interim Chief Medical Information Officer.

Center for Autism and Related Disorders has appointed Chris Boult as CIO.

ACV Auctions has appointed Bahman Koohestani as CTO.

Cedar Fair has appointed Ty Tastepe as CIO.

Tailored Brands has appointed Scott Vifquain as CTO.

Cooper Standard has appointed Soma Venakat as CIO.

City of Boise has appointed Alexandra Winkler as CIO

Trimble has appointed Poppy Crum as CTO.