She will move into a strategic advisor role
India-born Padmasree Warrior, one of Silicon Valley's high-profile female executives, has stepped down from her post of chief technology officer at global IT giant Cisco after a significant restructuring of top management under incoming chief executive officer Chuck Robbins.
Warrior, named last month by Forbes among the world's 100 most powerful women, will move into a strategic advisor role ‘effective immediately’ and will stay on in this new role ‘through the transition’ until September, Cisco said.
Under the restructuring announced last week, the 10 leaders who will sit on Cisco's new executive leadership team will include India-born Pankaj Patel, executive vice president and chief development officer.
Warrior, 54, had joined Cisco in 2008 and had served as chief technology officer and senior vice-president of engineering during her seven years at the company.
In a blog post, Robbins described Warrior as a ‘highly respected leader’ who has been a ‘champion internally for innovation, strategic partnerships, investments and mergers and acquisitions’.
"Padmasree has led the success of many of our strategic partnerships and will remain with us until September to help finalise some of our key partnerships for the future. I am grateful for the impact she's had on Cisco and her commitment to helping us finalise these important alliances," he said.
In her advisory post, Warrior ‘is charged with aligning technology development and corporate strategy to enable Cisco to anticipate, shape, and lead major market transitions,’ Cisco said.
She will help ‘direct technology and operational innovation across the company and oversees strategic partnerships, mergers and acquisitions, the integration of new business models, the incubation of new technologies, and the cultivation of world-class technical talent."
Warrior, an alumnus of the IIT-Delhi and Cornell University, was ranked 84th in this year's Forbes list of 100 Most Powerful Women in the world and has regularly received various leadership awards.
She is a member of the Board of Trustees for Cornell University and serves on the Gap Inc. Board of Directors.
She also sits on the Board of Directors for Thorn (formerly DNA Foundation).
Cisco said Pankaj will continue to lead Cisco's 25,000 development engineers and the company's $36 billion technology portfolio.
In previous roles at Cisco, Patel served as Senior Vice
President and general manager for the company's service provider business, which achieved market segment leadership in routing, video and mobility under his leadership.
He was a founding leader of Cisco's first multi-service access business unit, developing strategy for access routers and voice-over-packet technology and delivery. He had joined Cisco through the company's acquisition of Stratacom in 1996.
Image: Padmasree Warrior; Photograph: Rediff Archives