Big changes are afoot in the Twitter executive roster today. According to All Things D, former chief financial officer Ali Rowghani is being made chief operating officer. That’s the same post that belonged to CEO Dick Costolo until October of 2010, when he took the top spot from co-founder Evan Williams. After leaving Pixar to join the company in 2010, Rowghani developed a reputation for being heavily involved behind the scenes at Twitter, including contributing to its monetization efforts by offering ideas for its Promoted Suite of ad products. Rowghani’s former CFO position will go to ex-Zynga treasurer Mike Gupta, who is leaving that company after just over a year.
SAVANNAH, GA – Union Mission, a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing and reducing homelessness throughout the greater Savannah area, has hired Dr. Gerri Ann Robbins as Chief Operating Officer.
Dr. Robbins will oversee the management of all daily operations, including maintaining the quality of all programs and the integrity of the organization as set forth under the leadership of Dr. Frances Carter, president and CEO of Union Mission.
“We’re delighted to welcome Dr. Robbins to Union Mission,” said Dr. Frances Carter, president and CEO of Union Mission. “Her vast professional experience as a business executive and exceptional career as a family therapist will serve as tremendous assets in the overall health, efficiency and success of our operations at Union Mission.”
With more than 10 years of experience as a results-driven business executive and licensed marriage and family therapist, Dr. Robbins formerly served as the Director of EAP and Leadership Development at Secure Health in Macon, Ga. During her eight-year tenure at Secure Health, she pioneered numerous outreach programs and events to create new revenue streams.
Originally from Savannah, Dr. Robbins earned a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Mercer University in 2010 and was a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and Psi Chi Honor Society. She also has an M.A. in Family Therapy at Mercer University School of Medicine and a B.A. in Psychology from Mercer University.
She is a Georgia Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a member of American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists and a member of Georgia Association for Marriage and Family Therapists.
Dr. Gerri Ann Robbins,
Union Mission’s Chief
Former non-profit head pleads not guilty to stealing $200K
The man accused of embezzling money from an organization linked to the Peter Young Foundation is arraigned on charges. Our Megan Cruz has more from outside Rensselaer County Court.
TROY, N.Y. — The former chief operating officer of a not-for-profit organization associated with the Peter Young Foundation was arraigned on Thursday.
Dennis Bassat, 53, pleaded not guilty in Rensselaer County Court to second-degree grand larceny, two counts of criminal possession of a forged instrument, and two counts of falsifying business records.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says Bassat is accused of embezzling at least $200,000 from 820 River Street Incorporated. The facility was part of an umbrella organization of multiple not-for-profits known as Peter Young Housing Industry and Treatment.
The records state as part of the scheme, Bassat signed time sheets and other documents for fictitious people who never actually performed work for the organization.
Peter Young, who is an Albany priest, is known in the area for his work in drug rehabilitation programs and the needy.
Last week, the FBI and state attorney general’s office raided the facilities in Albany, Menands, and Schenectady.
Young contacted the state about the theft two years ago. His attorney says financial documents were seized in last week’s raid.
Bassat was sent to jail without bail.
The Peter Young organization released a statement saying in the two years since the theft was discovered, “Father Young’s organizations have reorganized the management teams, hired new program leaders and promoted talented and dedicated managers from among the 300 plus employees. We have brought in an experienced financial consultant to guide the programs to improved financial controls, and a comprehensive Corporate Compliance Program was implemented with training of all staff.”
Warner Music Group today announced that Sony EVP Rob Wiesenthal has been appointed Chief Operating Officer, a new position, effective January 1. Wiesenthal will be based in New York and report directly to CEO Steve Cooper.
As a member of WMG’s senior management team, Wiesenthal’s responsibilities will include global corporate development across WMG’s recorded music and music publishing operations, identifying new business models and helping to drive growth through investments and acquisitions.
Wiesenthal joins WMG from Sony Corporation where he has served in various leadership roles including Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer of Sony Corporation of America; Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer, Sony Entertainment Inc.; and Group Executive, Sony Corporation. He was also a member of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Operating Committee and sat on the Board of Directors for Sony Music Entertainment and Sony Ericsson.
Twitter shook up the top brass a little today, transitioning current Chief Financial Officer Ali Rowghani to the top operating role, and naming former Zynga treasurer Mike Gupta as the company’s new CFO.
Twitter chief executive Dick Costolo confirmed the news in a tweet this evening:
Congratulations to @ROWGHANI on his new role as COO and to @mgupta on his new role as CFO.
Rowghani has not yet updated his LinkedIn profile, although, appropriately enough, his Twitter profile already reflects the title change. While he was formerly CFO at Pixar as well, according to AllThingsD he has been focusing more on operational responsibilities than financial, so the title switch is more a reflection of current reality than a major shift.
Twitter’s new CFO, Mike Gupta, has been with Twitter for only two months, according to his LinkedIn profile. His previous role was as a treasurer and senior VP with Zynga, where he spent 18 months after eight years in a finance role at Yahoo. Gupta gets the prize for great timing, not only having left a crashing-and-burning Zynga but also getting a promotion just two months after starting his new job.
Interestingly, the new CFO of Twitter has exactly three tweets so far, all of them in the last 24 hours. According to myTwitterAge, his account was created two years and eight months ago, but he had not tweeted until recently.
One can assume that Costolo had some requirements for him in his new job, and one of them was: tweet.
Thomas Glaser has been appointed as USA Truck’s chief operating officer for an interim period of three months, beginning Jan. 1.
Glaser, 62, was hired in June to serve as a part-time consultant, acording to a company bio. He has worked in transportation for 24 years, including the last two as a consultant. His served as president and CEO of Arnold Transportation Services, Inc. from 2008-10. Prior to that Glaser, who has bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Michigan, worked from 2001-07 at Celadon Group, including time as president and COO.
USA Truck (Nasdaq: USAK) reported a 2.3 percent decline in third quarter revenue, a loss of $6.1 million. The company reported $14.4 million in losses during the first nine months of the year.
Last month the company announced changes to its board and made other steps designed to prevent a hostile takeover.
In a move that shuffles some of the highest ranking members of the microblogging start-up’s executive team, Ali Rowghani has been named chief operating officer of Twitter, according to a change in his Twitter profile, shifting into the role that CEO Dick Costolo once held only a few years ago.
Rowghani, who has been with the company since 2010, came to Twitter to act as chief financial officer after leaving the same role he held at Walt Disney Company’s Pixar animation studios. He was at Pixar for more than nine years, serving as CFO for half that time.
Update 7 pm PT: Twitter CEO Dick Costolo just confirmed the news via tweet: “Congratulations to @rowghani on his new role as COO and to @mgupta on his new role as CFO.”
Rowghani has often been noted as the quiet, behind-the-scenes body man to Twitter CEO Costolo, taking on far more operational responsibilities than that of typical CFOs. Rowghani has had his hand in many important areas of the business, including contributing ideas around Twitter’s Promoted Suite of ad products, a key component of the company’s monetization efforts.
So effectively, Rowghani as COO is less of a new role than it is a solidification of his current efforts — a title change, as it were.
Former Zynga treasurer Mike Gupta will slide into Rowghani’s CFO slot, according to Gupta’s updated Twitter profile. Gupta spent a little more than a year in the role at Zynga, and was previously a high-ranking exec at Yahoo, where he played an instrumental part in Yahoo’s search and online partnership deals with Microsoft.
Twitter did not immediately respond for a request for comment.
The shuffle also comes on the heels of a major departure for Twitter, as VP of Growth Othman Laraki announced his departure from the company via tweet on Wednesday evening. Laraki was responsible for growing Twitter’s user base over the past year, which the company seems to have achieved; on Wednesday, Twitter announced it had reached the 200 million active user mark. He did not name his next landing point, though I assume he’ll be taking some time off, as he and his wife just had their first child.
The changes in the top ranks have been some time coming, as Twitter has spent the past year reorganizing the company into different teams, headed by high-profile tech hires stolen from other big companies around Silicon Valley (Google perhaps being the prime poaching target).
Earlier in the summer, Twitter snapped up Google sales guy Richard Alfonsi to become VP of global online sales, wrangling in most of the small and medium sized businesses that make of the long tail of Twitter’s ad business. Michael Sippey left SAY Media in January to head up Twitter’s VP of consumer product role, while Chris Fry and Adam Messinger were poached from Salesforce and Oracle, respectively, now holding VP of engineering posts.
Part of the question the company must face now, as Twitter has swelled from a few hundred employees to upwards of 1500, is how the company will cultivate and maintain its culture, given that many new hires come from rival tech giants in Silicon Valley.
Another potential pitfall is Twitter’s ability to hold on to key talent, as top figures like Laraki may prefer to leave the company after only a handful of years, opting instead to pursue the entrepreneurial route and build a new start-up. (Facebook, too, has this challenge to deal with.)
But it’s also another series of hires on Twitter’s long road in preparation for an IPO — which could potentially come in the next two years — solidifying key executive positions and building out the different divisions of the company under them.
Citigroup Inc’s chief executive, Michael Corbat, is not looking to fill the positions of president and chief operating officer, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
Michael Corbat, who took over as chief executive following Vikram Pandit’s resignation in October, briefed the board on his thinking at meetings last week, the paper said. An announcement is expected early next year, the Journal said.
The former chief operating officer, John Havens, resigned when Pandit did.
A Citi spokeswoman was not immediately available for comment.
As the social network aims to drive revenue, Ali Rowghani is named chief operating officer and Mike Gupta moves into role of chief financial officer.
Twitter CEO Dick Costolo confirmed via tweet today that the massive social network is now being headed by a new chief operating officer and chief financial officer.
Ali Rowghani moves into the COO position from his previous post of CFO at Twitter. Rowghani has been with the social network since 2010, when he joined the company after serving as CFO for the Disney-owned Pixar Animation Studios. According to AllThingsD, Rowghani is known for multi-tasking at the social network and contributing to Twitter’s Promoted Suite of ad products.
Mike Gupta moved into Rowghani’s former position after working as the treasurer for Zynga. According to AllThingsD, Gupta was at Zynga for about a year and beforehand worked as a high-level executive at Yahoo where he worked on online partnership deals with Microsoft.
It will be interesting to see what these two will do in coming up with ideas to create more revenue for Twitter.
In the past few months, the social network has been pushing hard on structural changes in hopes that it will boost profitability. In September, it announced a new mobile-first strategy aimed at settling on more user experience consistency across its many clients — Web, iPhone, iPad, and Android — a move that it clearly hopes will help increase advertising revenue.
Social network also sees exit of VP of Growth
The top ranks at Twitter have seen a massive shake-up, as Ali Rowghani has been named as the social network’s new Chief Operating Officer and Mike Gupta has been hired as the new Chief Financial Officer, and VP of Growth Othman Laraki announced he would be leaving.
CEO Dick Costolo announced the news of Rowghani and Gupta’s new positions on his Twitter page Wednesday night.
Rowghani was, until now, CFO at Twitterm the position being taken over by Gupta. Prior to that he served as CFO at Pixar Animation Studios from 2002 to 2010.
According to his updated LinkedIn profile, Gupta served as VP Corporate Finance & Treasurer at Twitter for two months prior to taking on his new role. Before that he spent a year and a half as SVP Finance & Treasurer at Zynga, before leaving in November, one of the many, many other executives to abandon the once powerful social game company. Gupta also spent eight years as Chief Treasury Officer at Yahoo, from 2003 to 2011.
Rowghani’s LinkedIn page has not been updated, but both Rowghani and Gupta have updated their Twitter profiles to reflect their new positions.
Funny enough, Gupta does not seem to be much of a Twitter guy, as his profile only has three tweets… all of them sent out Wednesday.
I’m not saying that to work at Twitter you actually have to use the service, but it might help. Or at least it couldn’t hurt!
Not all of Twitter’s executive news today involved people moving up in the company as Othman Laraki, VP of Growth at Twitter, also made news Wednesday night when he sent out a tweet announcing that he would be leaving the company.
Laraki, whose job it was, as his title suggests, to grow the number of users on Twitter is at least leaving on a high note: the company announced earlier this week that it had passed the 200 million active member mark.
There is no word on what Laraki’s next career move will be.
These changes are just the latest to Twitter’s executive ranks this year, as the social network made a a habit of poaching Google employees this year.
In October, Twitter lured away Google Executive Matt Derella as its new director of agency business development.
Derella had been Google’s agency relations chief, where he handled the search engine’s relationship with Publicis, the world’s third largest holding companies by revenue. At Twitter, Derella is responsible for establishing relationships at other ad holding companies.
In April director of global communications Gabriel Stricker announced he was joining Twitter, and in June it was VP of global online sales Richard Alfonsi who left Google to join the social network.
Vator contacted Twitter for a statement on the news of Rowghani and Gupta’s new placements within the company, but Twitter had no further comment to make beyond Costolo’s tweet.