Steve Cotter has been appointed the new Chief Executive Officer of Research and Education Advanced Network New Zealand (REANNZ) Ltd. REANNZ owns and operates KAREN, the Kiwi Advanced Research and Education Network, on behalf of the country’s research, education and innovation community.
Steve’s experience with similar networks is both extensive and impressive. Some of the highlights include serving as Google’s network deployment manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, as a Director in SBC Global Communications’ (now AT&T) engineering and construction departments, and more recently as the head of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network, located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. His teams have won multiple awards, including being named by InformationWeek as one of the Top 10 Government Innovators in 2009.
“Advanced, high-performance networks like KAREN are an essential part of the national infrastructure for all countries with an interest in being competitive in the global marketplace,” Steve said. “Highly reliable, very high bandwidth networks drive economic growth and stimulate a new generation of innovations addressing critical needs, such as health care and education. Our job is to ensure that innovation and discovery are only limited by our users’ imaginations, not by infrastructure. I’m very excited to have the opportunity to take on this challenge at REANNZ, and am looking forward to working with such a talented and dedicated team.”
REANNZ Board Chair Professor John Raine also expressed his enthusiasm for Steve’s appointment.
“The Board is extremely pleased to have been able to confirm such an outstanding candidate for the Chief Executive role,” he said. “After nearly 15 years of leading research and commercial networks at the national and international scale, Steve brings to this job exactly the right combination of experience in all aspects of network design, development, deployment and operation. He has an important job ahead of him to continue to build on the significant contribution that REANNZ and KAREN make to New Zealand in general and to the research and education sectors specifically. I wish him the very best in the role.”
Steve replaces inaugural CEO Donald Clark, who led REANNZ for five years, and will start early December. He attended the U.S. Naval Academy, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering then served as a helicopter pilot in the Marine Corps. He earned an MBA from Boston University.