Cable Tech

Headcount: Family Time (Reprise)

Headcount is increasingly skeptical of "the family" as the all-purpose resignation reason for today's executives.

Here's one of many reasons: In April, Advanced Fibre Communications Inc. (AFC) (Nasdaq: AFCI) executive Corey Geiger stepped down to spend time with his family, according to AFC's PR bods. However, about a month later, Geiger turns up at Pedestal Networks Inc., located some 70 family-friendly miles away from his desk at AFC (see Geiger Steps Up to Pedestal and AFC's Marketing VP Resigns ).

Of course, this isn't an example of Geiger being elusive -- he did have a month off to spend with family, after all. Maybe it's more a matter of AFC PR being ill-informed. Or something.

Headcount wonders how many families will be overdosing on Quality Time once Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA) completes its acquisition of AFC. The thought gives us pause as we ponder the 31-hour commute between AFC and Tellabs.

Enough family talk. Let's review some of the other hirings and firings of the past few days:

  • Arroyo Video Solutions Inc. has landed a big fish in Kim Kelly, its new president and CEO. Kelly, lauded by some cable trade publications as "the highest-ranking female MSO exec" left her gig as the president and COO of Insight Communications Co. Inc. (Nasdaq: ICCI), the nation's ninth largest MSO, in August 2003 after about 13 years on the job there.

    Kelly's experience and influence are likely to help Arroyo (see Top MSOs Assist Arroyo). But questions remain as to whether she was running towards opportunity or away from a turbulent situation at Insight.

    In 2003, the MSO lost about 9,000 Louisville subscribers, nearly 3 percent of its customers in its largest market, according to Broadcasting and Cable. The paper reports that cable giant Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) owns half of Insight and could trigger a provision next year to acquire the MSO, a move that likely would shake up Insight's executive ranks.

  • Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Wireline Bureau Chief William Maher has resigned but doesn’t plan to leave until the end of Aug. at the earliest, according to a report from Communications Daily. No word yet on whether he will be spending more time with the family, or just blowing them off to go fishing.
  • Carl Vogel, president and CEO of Charter Communications (Nasdaq: CHTR) and Gordon L. Stitt, president and CEO of Extreme Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: EXTR) have joined the board of RGB Networks Inc. RGB's other board is now very well rounded: Its members include William R. Hearst III of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Jim Goetz of Accel Partners, RGB CEO Adam S. Tom, and RGB founder Peter Monta. Like many pure-bred Silicon Valley startups, RGB noticed it wouldn't look right without a service provider and big boy equipment maker on the board. It's very similar to the way the Village People wouldn't look right without a construction worker and a cop.
  • Jeff Schmitz, senior VP of product line management at Tellabs, left on July 2, the company confirmed today. Schmitz, a longtime Tellabber, was one of the group that reported to Ed Kennedy back when the company acquired Ocular Networks. His tenure outlasted that of Kennedy and Greg Nulty, who left in February.
  • T-Networks Inc. founder Steve O'Brien has left the company, Headcount sources say. T-Networks won't comment on O'Brien's status, and emails to his work address are bouncing all over the highway.
  • Earlier this week, Terayon Communication Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: TERN) announced the appointment of Jerry D. Chase as its new CEO. The company's senior VP and CFO, Arthur T. Taylor, resigned to take a bigger gig at a yet-to-be-disclosed company. Meanwhile, the company's general counsel, Edward Lopez, has taken the CFO seat temporarily. Back in May, then CEO Zaki Rakib said he would give up his post no later than August 31 to -- no, don't say it! -- spend time with his family.

    Here are some of the other appointments and disappointments from the past several days:

    That's all for this go-round. Keep those news tips coming to: [email protected].

    — Phil Harvey, News Editor, Light Reading

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