Open Source Development Lab names new CEO

The Open Source Development Lab (OSDL), an advocacy group that promotes Linux use in corporate computing, has hired a 22-year IT veteran as its new CEO.

In an announcement yesterday, the Beaverton, Ore.-based group named Stuart F. Cohen to its top post. He replaces interim CEO Jerry Greenberg, who will remain on the OSDL board.

Cohen, 43, previously served as vice president of marketing and business development and as a corporate officer at embedded systems vendor RadiSys Corp. in Hillsboro, Ore., where his responsibilities included strategic partnership development. He also worked as vice president of worldwide marketing for projection vendor InFocus Corp. in Wilsonville, Ore., and for 17 years at IBM, where he held senior positions in sales and marketing in the personal computer and networking divisions, with international experience in Europe, Southeast Asia and China.

In an interview with Computerworld today, Cohen said he has been meeting with the group's sponsor members, which include IBM, Cisco Systems Inc., Computer Associates International Inc., Dell Computer Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., NEC Corp., Red Hat Inc. and SuSE Linux AG, to find out what the IT world still needs to do to promote Linux within the business community.

"There's clearly a growth and expansion of that mission that our board would like me to take on," Cohen said. "Our sponsors are very committed to the Linux marketplace and to the growth of the Linux marketplace."

One move Cohen said he'd like to make is to create an industry council made up of analysts, journalists and representatives of software and infrastructure vendors, who would be able to share their insights about what they're hearing about Linux from vendors and customers in the marketplace.

Ross Mauri, vice president of development for IBM Systems Group and the president of the OSDL board of directors, said in a statement that Cohen is the right choice for CEO.

"Stuart understands the importance and promise of Linux to enterprise customers, open-source developers and our sponsors at OSDL," Mauri said. "His front-line experience with data center customers at IBM and his telecommunications industry business development experience at RadiSys give him a unique and valuable perspective to advance the mission of OSDL and build upon our current success."

The OSDL provides engineering and technical assistance to Linux developers worldwide, with state-of-the-art data centers in Japan and the U.S. The OSDL also coordinates technical working groups focused on hardening Linux for data center and carrier-grade computing environments.

Cohen said he has three main goals as he takes on his new post: accelerating the use of Linux and Linux-based applications in business, increasing the number of sponsors of the OSDL, and expanding the group's leadership role in championing Linux-based development projects for business-critical applications.

The OSDL was founded in 2000.

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