IBM Announces Kathryn Guarini as CIO

Below is the blog that IBM Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations Jim Kavanaugh shared with IBMers today announcing a new Chief Information Officer.

March 1, 2021

Earlier today I announced that Fletcher Previn, IBM’s Chief Information Officer, will be leaving IBM to pursue other opportunities.  With Fletcher’s departure, Kathryn Guarini will assume the role of Chief Information Officer.  Kathryn joins us from IBM Research, where she most recently held the roles of Chief Operations Officer and Vice President of Impact Science. 

These changes are effective immediately, with Kathryn and Fletcher working together over the coming weeks to ensure a smooth transition. 

As we determined our next CIO, it was important to identify a leader who could continue our transformational journey, is technically eminent and has a proven track-record in building organizational capability.  Kathryn led the IBM Research transformation to increase impact, extend technical distinction and improve the operational efficiency of the division. And, as VP of Impact Science, Kathryn was responsible for driving the IBM Research workstreams around the Future of Health, Work, and Climate, as well as the Governance of Science and Technology.

Kathryn has held various technical, management and executive positions in research and development during her 20+ year tenure in IBM.  She has also led large global teams to deliver complex solutions that meet the changing needs of clients, and she is experienced in technical strategy and leadership development.  Kathryn’s innovative technical research has been recognized through various industry awards, and she has written more than 60 technical publications.  She earned a Ph.D. from Stanford University in applied physics and holds more than 65 U.S. patents.

Kathryn is also passionate about and active in mentoring, inspiring and recruiting scientists and engineers of all ages, especially women.  She regularly blogs on her website "Mother of Invention" about leadership, science and innovation.

Under Fletcher’s leadership, the Chief Information Office (CIO) has gone through a significant transformation. The team advanced and improved our internal tools, applications and IT infrastructure to create a more productive environment for IBMers worldwide as they work and engage with each other, as well as with partners and clients. Our continued internal investments in hybrid cloud, infrastructure modernization, network transformation, enhanced cybersecurity capabilities and collaboration tools have positioned us well to meet the demands of 2021 and beyond.  

Throughout his tenure, Fletcher has provided invaluable thought leadership, creativity, innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit to the CIO, IBM and the industry as a whole.  I can't thank him enough for his contributions.


Jim Kavanaugh,
IBM Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations