Datatel, Inc., a leading provider of technology solutions and professional services to higher education, today announced that its Board of Directors unanimously appointed John F. Speer, III, as the company's new president and chief operating officer. Mr. Speer, 47, fills the vacancy created by the recent death of H. Russell "Russ" Griffith, Datatel's long-term president. Mr. Speer, who has been Datatel's vice president of sales and a 22-year company veteran, will also serve on the Board of Directors.
The Board of Directors additionally designated Vernon Hollidge as chairman of the board. Mr. Hollidge, who acted as interim president and CEO after Mr. Griffith's passing, retains his position as senior vice president of finance and administration.
In another action, the Board of Directors approved Datatel's executive team recommendation that Bill Knight, an eight-year company veteran, assume Mr. Speer's former position of vice president of sales. Mr. Knight had been Datatel's director of client relations.
"We are very excited to partner with John as Datatel's new president," said Datatel Board Member Orlando Bravo, a managing partner with Thoma Cressey Equity Partners, a private equity investment firm and investor in Datatel. "For the past nine years as vice president of sales, John has been instrumental in growing Datatel's revenue from $45 million to $108 million. We have full confidence in John based on his track record, long tenure in the business, and proven leadership skills."
Mr. Speer joined Datatel's Software Development Division in 1984, and in 1986 moved to California to help open the company's San Francisco office. He returned to Datatel's headquarters in 1994 to become a regional sales manager, leading the company's newly formed Central Region Business Development Team. In 1997, John was named vice president of sales, with the responsibility of new client acquisitions and ongoing client relationship management.
Mr. Speer majored in Management Information Systems at James Madison University, graduating in 1983. Having participated in the IBM Total Quality Management (TQM) training program in the early 1990s, he became a champion for continuous improvement initiatives at Datatel. Mr. Speer played a pivotal leadership role in Datatel receiving the United States Senate Productivity and Quality Award in 1997, and has been an active member of the Continuous Quality Improvement Network (CQIN) since 2000. Today, he is actively involved in advancing the adoption of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award principles throughout higher education.
About Datatel, Inc.
Datatel is a leading provider of fully-integrated enterprise information management software and professional services for higher education. Headquartered in Fairfax, VA, the company has more than 725 client institutions throughout North America. Datatel has exclusively focused on meeting the needs of colleges and universities for more than 25 years, helping them operate more efficiently so they may better serve their constituents. For more information, please visit www.datatel.com.
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