Vivek Kundra has a new platform for his "cloud first" message. Kundra, who served as the first Chief Information Officer for the U.S. government, has joined Salesforce.com as executive vice president of emerging markets. The move comes six months after Kundra left the CIO post to accept a fellowship at Harvard University.
Kundra has been a leading advocate of shifting federal IT web sites and applications to a cloud computing model, shifting workloads to third-party data centers. This "cloud first" policy was part of the Obama administration's effort to transform the government's IT infrastructure. Another key component was a massive data center consolidation that is expected to close more than 1,200 data centers by 2015, with their workloads shifted to more efficient data centers or cloud computing platforms.
"Vivek Kundra is an amazing technology visionary who opened the eyes of millions to the transformational power of cloud computing," said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO, salesforce.com. "His disruptive leadership is just what the industry needs to accelerate the social enterprise."
"Salesforce.com is an industry disruptor, helping organizations use the transformative power of technology for change," said Vivek Kundra, EVP of emerging markets, salesforce.com. "I am excited to join the most innovative company in the world that is pioneering social, mobile and open cloud computing technologies for the enterprise."
Kundra won't have to wait long to have an opportunity to address the data center industry in his new post. Kundra will be the keynote speaker at the Data Center World conference scheduled for March 18-22 at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas.
Prior to his CIO post, Kundra served as the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for the District of Columbia, and Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Technology for the Commonwealth of Virginia. He holds an MS degree in Information Technology from the University of Maryland.