Last week Starwood Hotels announced the appointment of IT industry leader Martha Poulter as Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer. She replaces Roger Berry, current CIO, who will stay with the company and take an advisory role until the end of the year. Poulter will begin her tenure on June 23.
“As we transform the way we use technology to keep pace with the fast-changing expectations of our guests, we are delighted to welcome Martha to our team in this key leadership role,” said Starwood CEO Fritz van Paasschen. “In addition to her significant experience leading a large global IT organization, Martha impressed us with her ability to connect legacy platforms with new world technologies. Her innovative approach is exactly what we were looking for as we continue to significantly invest in technology and talent.”
Leadership at GE Capital
Prior to joining Starwoood Hotels, Poulter served as Vice President and Chief Information Officer for GE Capital where she was responsible for all information technology strategy and operations. Poulter has been an IT industry leader for over 25 years. She joined GE in 1995 and has held a series of IT leadership positions where she was responsible for the completion of digitalization projects and many IT operational improvements, including Starwood’s first customer mobile app for commercial business.
“Martha will lead a seasoned global IT team that is well integrated into virtually every aspect of our business including brands and global operations,” said van Paasschen. “I would like to thank Roger for his leadership over the last three years and the critical role he has played in upgrading our IT systems, making them scalable, flexible and secure, and building a strong and agile team to support our ambitious technology agenda. We wish him all the best in his well-deserved retirement.”
Heavy Investment in Technology
Poulter received her B.S.E in Engineering and Computer Science from University of Connecticut, and her M.B.A. from the University of New Haven. She is a board member of the Hispanic Federation, and the Norwalk Community College Foundation.
As Poulter joins the company, we can expect for much of her IT industry experience and successful projects at GE Capital to translate into her new role. The company is planning to continue heavy investment in technology and will utilize Poulter’s experience integrating innovative new technologies with legacy solutions. Likely, Poulter will begin many new initiatives in the first few months of her new position.
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