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About this event

One fundamental difference between your role as a CEO and any other role you've ever held, is you as a public figure. You become a brand yourself and that brand must blend with the brand of the business. Imagine Elon Musk - cavalier, compulsive, "out there" as the CEO of a bank. In a bank, we want thoughtful, risk-sensitive, trusted practices. The personas don't match. But Elon Musk and SpaceX we can see. Being a CEO means you will be in the limelight, like it or not, and you must be poised, and ready, and your brand and the company's must align. Increasingly in today's world, you also need to integrate a societal view with your business presence. You have to be a force, one that people will respect and get behind, both inside the company and outside. 

Join us and Yvonne Wassenaar as we explore the transition from great executive to public persona required in becoming a CEO. Yvonne did just this, moving from CIO of New Relic to CEO of Airware, and then CEO of Puppet. One of these roles required resiliency and poise as the business ultimately wound down. The other required heroics, tenacity, amazing influence and negotiating skills to get it to its highly successful recent acquisition.


Yvonne Wassenaar CEO

Yvonne Wassenaar is the CEO of Puppet, a trusted enterprise provider of pervasive automation across traditional and cloud-native environments. She has 30 years of experience scaling companies globally and driving enterprise transformation with technology. Prior to Puppet, Yvonne served as CEO of Airware, CIO at New Relic and she held multiple leadership roles at VMware and Accenture. Yvonne is currently a board member of Anaplan (PLAN), Forrester (FORR), and Harvey Mudd College. Yvonne is a passionate supporter of diversity in tech and amidst growing concerns with how modern technology might be used, Yvonne is championing technology to drive a safer, more efficient and innovative planet.


Coco Brown CEO

Coco is founder and CEO of Athena Alliance. Prior to her current roles, Coco served as President, COO, and Board Director of Taos, a market leader in IT Services serving hundreds of F1000 companies, including Apple, Cisco, ebay, Facebook, and Silicon Valley Bank. Coco brings rich experience across F1000 companies, start-ups, and nonprofits in the roles of CEO, COO, advisor, and Board member to Athena. She possesses a unique understanding of the breadth of challenges and opportunities of leadership. She empowers leaders to execute successfully, working with them to develop the relationship between a company’s strategy and its organizational design and environment. Coco’s expertise in developing and strengthening these important linkages makes her a powerful C-level advisor and Board member. In addition to serving on the Board of Taos from 2004 to 2014, Coco served as a Board Director for MentorNet during its rebranding, product transformation, and subsequent acquisition by Great Minds in STEM. Coco was on the finance committee supporting the Board of Directors of Samasource and established the Operating Committee for the Silicon Valley arm of Golden Seeds, a New York-based early-stage investment firm. She also currently serves as Chair of the Nominating Committee for the Anita Borg Technology Leadership Award, one of the most prestigious awards honoring women in technology.

Key Details

The CEO as a Public Figure

Thu, Sep 08 @ 12:00pm PT (1 hr)

Virtual (RSVP for link)


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