As Executive Chairman and CEO of BlackBerry Limited, John Chen is responsible for defining the company’s vision and goals, setting its strategy, and ensuring the team’s execution matches corporate objectives. John was appointed by the BlackBerry board of directors in November 2013. Under John’s leadership, BlackBerry has achieved financial stability and built growth engines in enterprise cybersecurity and embedded software which reposition the company to apply its strengths and assets to the Enterprise of Things, an emerging category with massive potential.
John came to BlackBerry a distinguished leader and proven turnaround executive with more than 30 years of engineering and management experience along with a reputation that extends well-beyond the technology industry. Prior to joining BlackBerry, John served as Chairman and CEO of Sybase Inc. where he re-invented the company and led it through 55 consecutive quarters of profitability, providing outstanding shareholder returns during his 15-year tenure.
A global business leader with a strong interest in policy, John has testified before Congress on U.S.–China trade relations and was appointed by U.S. President George W. Bush to serve on the President's Export Council. In 2006, he was appointed co-chair of the Secure Borders and Open Doors Advisory Committee. Additionally, John chaired the U.S.-China Policy Advisory Roundtable for the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and has been a member of the Committee of 100 since 1997 and was its Chairman from 2009-2011.
John graduated magna cum laude from Brown University with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and a master's in electrical engineering from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). John has an honorary professorship from Shanghai University, and honorary doctorates from San Jose State University, City University of Hong Kong, and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. John has received awards from the U.S.-Asia Institute, the U.S.-China Policy Foundation, the California-Asia Business Council, and the U.S.-Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation.
In addition to BlackBerry, John serves on the board of directors for The Walt Disney Company and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations, the board of trustees of Caltech, the board of national trustees of The First Tee, and the board of governors of the San Francisco Symphony. John has previously served on the New York Stock Exchange’s listing advisory committee and the board of directors for Wells Fargo, CIT Group Inc., Beyond.com, Niku Corporation, Wafer Technology, and Turbolinux.
Chief Financial Officer & Chief Operating Officer
Steve Capelli is Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer responsible for all of BlackBerry’s financial operations including corporate accounting, FP&A, treasury, tax, procurement, pricing and investor relations. Steve is also responsible for cross functional synergies to improve operational efficiency and drive revenue growth.
Steve has 25 years of executive experience leading finance and operations organizations in the software and technology industry.
Prior to joining BlackBerry, Steve was President of Worldwide Field Operations at Sybase with responsibility for more than $1 billion in annual revenue. Steve also led international operations at Sybase as General Manager with responsibility for sales, operations, finance, customer support, marketing and human resources. Prior to Sybase, Steve was Chief Financial Officer of Siemens Pyramid. Earlier in his career, he served in controllership roles at Digital Equipment Corporation, Unisys Corporation and WR Grace and Company.
Steve received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from The College of New Jersey and an MBA in finance from Rutgers University. He currently serves on corporate boards with representation on audit, compensation and governance committees.
Dr. Sandeep Chennakeshu
President, BlackBerry Technology Solutions
Dr. Sandeep Chennakeshu is the President of BlackBerry Technology Solutions (BTS). In this role, he manages and drives the strategic direction of BlackBerry’s innovative technology assets, including QNX Software Systems (embedded software), Certicom (cryptography applications) and Paratek (RF antenna tuning). Sandeep also manages the company’s extensive patent portfolio and is a key leader of the Internet of Things strategy.
Over the past 25 years, Sandeep has been engaged in research, product development, IP creation/licensing and general management in the wireless, electronics and semiconductor industry.
Prior to joining BlackBerry, Sandeep was the President of PMP LLC & RSI Consulting LLC, offering restructuring, strategic growth and innovation consultation to multinational clients. He has previously served as Senior Advisor at Sony Corporation of America, Chief Development Officer of Freescale Semiconductor and General Manager of Freescale’s Wireless Business group, respectively. Sandeep was also President of Ericsson Mobile Platforms and Chief Technology Officer of Sony-Ericsson and Ericsson Mobile Phones. Sandeep started his career in research and development at General Electric (GE).
Sandeep holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Southern Methodist University and a Post Graduate Diploma in Industrial Management from the Indian Institute of Science. He is an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Fellow and is a named inventor on 73 patents.
Executive Vice President, Enterprise Products and Value Added Solutions
Billy leads the Enterprise Product Management and Software organizations.
Prior to joining BlackBerry, Billy served as Senior Vice President of Product & Technology Operations at Sybase, Inc. where he was responsible for Sybase technology research, product development and customer support. He held many other leadership positions within Sybase, including General Manager of the OEM Business Unit, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the e-Business Division, and Vice President of the Product Development, Enterprise Solutions Division. He has also been a Director of Engineering at Unisys and Siemens.
Billy earned a MS in Computer Science from California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California and a BS in Electrical Engineering from McGill University in Montreal, Canada.
Executive Vice President, Human Resources
Nita is responsible for leading the HR team to design and deliver global programs, initiatives, partnerships, solutions and services in all facets of HR to support the achievement of the company’s operational goals and strategic objectives.
Before joining BlackBerry, Nita served as Chief People Officer and Chief Human Resources Officer for SAP Cloud and SuccessFactors. Prior to that, she was Vice President of Worldwide Human Resources for Sybase, Inc., where she was responsible for providing and implementing high quality, state-of-the-art human resource and security services and programs for Sybase employees, management, executives and campuses worldwide.
Nita has an MBA from Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, Calif., and has also completed several courses towards an MA in Counseling Psychology from the same institution. She earned her BS in Business Administration with finance and accounting major with honors.
Carl J. Wiese
President, Global Sales
Carl Wiese is President, Global Sales, and is responsible for driving BlackBerry’s go-to-market strategy and advancing the company’s global sales and services efforts to drive growth.
Prior to BlackBerry, Carl spent more than a decade at Cisco in a variety of leadership roles, most recently as Senior Vice President leading the company’s global collaboration business, directing sales and go-to-market strategy. He also served as Vice President of U.S. & Canada Advanced Technologies, focused on driving sales and deployment processes for new and emerging technologies that represented some of the company’s highest potential growth segments.
Carl has over 25 years’ experience in sales, marketing, services, and product management for high-technology companies. Previously, Carl held executive positions at Apple, Avaya, Lucent and Texas Instruments.
Carl holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Oklahoma State University.
Chief Marketing Officer
As Chief Marketing Officer, Mark Wilson is responsible for delivering the BlackBerry message through thought leadership and other opportunities that promote the brand. He also leads technology partner and developer programs, industry solutions and corporate events.
Before joining BlackBerry, he was chief marketing officer for Avaya, senior vice president of marketing for Sybase, an SAP Company, leader of the strategy practice at KPMG Consulting’s Information, Communication and Entertainment Group, and a marketing manager for AT&T. Mark was named by BtoB Magazine as one of the Best Marketers from 2009-2011 and 2013. He was also named to the 2013 FierceCMO list of CMOs to watch.
Mark holds an MBA and an MA in public policy studies from The University of Chicago. He received his BA from University of California at Santa Barbara.
Steven E. Zipperstein
Chief Legal Officer
Steve is responsible for worldwide legal, government relations, public policy, compliance, regulatory, corporate security and corporate real estate for BlackBerry Ltd. Steve also serves as the company’s Chief Risk Officer and oversees the company’s internal audit function.
Steve previously served as the General Counsel of Verizon Wireless from 2003 through 2011, and as a Deputy General Counsel of Verizon Communications Inc. from 2000 through 2003. Prior to the formation of Verizon Communications, Steve served as a Deputy General Counsel for GTE Corporation with corporate-wide responsibility for state regulatory, litigation and compliance matters.
Before joining GTE/Verizon, Steve served for more than nine years as a federal prosecutor in the United States Attorney’s office in Los Angeles. Steve tried more than a dozen federal felony jury trials (including the first-ever prosecution against the owners of a failed savings and loan during the late 1980s) and he argued 23 cases before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Steve also served as Counselor to Attorney General Janet Reno during the 1995 congressional hearings regarding the events at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas.
Steve graduated from UCLA with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science with highest honors, and received his law degree from the University of California, Davis, where he graduated Order of the Coif and served as a Law Review Editor and a Member of the Moot Court Board. Steve has taught at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and published several law review articles. He has testified before Congress on telecommunications policy issues numerous times.
Steve is a Member of the American Law Institute and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.
SVP, Corporate Development & Strategic Partnership
Vito leads Blackberry's Corporate Development activities, including strategy and M&A. He is also responsible for Strategic Partnerships and Alliances.
Vito joined BlackBerry after more than a decade working as a technology investment banker in New York and London, at Morgan Stanley and, most recently, as Managing Director at Perella Weinberg Partners.
He has also worked at Naspers as Corporate Development Principal and held several engineering roles at Cisco Systems earlier in his career.
Vito received a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from both the Politecnico di Milano and the University of Illinois, and a Masters of Business Administration from INSEAD.
Vice President and Corporate Controller
Steve Rai is Vice President and Corporate Controller for BlackBerry. In this role he is responsible for overseeing various aspects of the CFO Organization, including: Financial Reporting, Accounting, Tax, Revenue, SOX Compliance, Payroll, Insurance and Equity Administration.
Steve brings more than 25 years of progressive experience in financial management, business advisory and assurance services to U.S. and Canadian public companies, ranging from start-ups to multinational corporations.
Before joining BlackBerry, Steve was Corporate Controller for PMC-Sierra. He previously held senior management positions with TSX Venture Exchange and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.
Steve holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with an accounting and finance major from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. He is a Certified Public Accountant through the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Illinois (USA) and a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants in British Columbia, Canada.
Senior Director of Business Operations, Office of the CEO
Neelam Sandhu is responsible for the operations of the CEO office, including supporting the CEO in managing key customer and government relationships globally, preparation for and management of executive meetings and other engagements, and driving special cross-functional projects to deliver operational efficiencies. Neelam also manages BlackBerry’s travel strategy and operations.
Since joining BlackBerry in 2009 Neelam has held various positions, based out of the company’s United Kingdom, New York and California offices. Her responsibilities have included Brand Management, Brand Messaging, Marketing Operations, Go-To-Market for the Curve and Porsche Design products and Corporate Strategic Initiatives.
Neelam holds a bachelor’s degree, with honors, in Business Management, from the University of Leicester and an Executive Certification in Financial Analysis from the University of California at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business.
Senior Vice President and General Manager, Mobility Solutions
Alex Thurber is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Mobility Solutions for BlackBerry. He is responsible for BlackBerry’s global mobility product roadmap and joint development. He oversees the manufacturing supply chain, repair, customer support and product quality functions.
Alex has more than 25 years of experience in high-tech security. He joined BlackBerry in 2016 as the Senior Vice President of Global Sales. Prior to BlackBerry, he founded Thurber Technology Group, a technology company that became one of Portland Oregon’s first Internet service providers, focused on providing secure connectivity to the newly commercialized Internet.
In 1997, Alex’s company was the fastest growing technology company in Oregon, and the 75th fastest-growing technology company in the United States. In 1999, Alex was named Oregon’s Technology Entrepreneur of the Year.
After selling his company, he spent 10 years at Cisco Systems, responsible for developing global go-to-market strategies for both security and mobility solutions. Alex left Cisco to spend three years as the head of Worldwide Channels for McAfee. After McAfee was acquired by Intel, Alex went on to run worldwide sales for two smaller security companies in the Northwest, ending by developing and executing a complete sales turnaround for WatchGuard Technologies of Seattle.
Chief Information Officer
Mike Webber is Chief Information Officer at BlackBerry. In this role he manages Corporate Information Technology and Technology Services that are provided to BlackBerry customers globally.
Mike previously served as Vice President, Cyber Security and Core Networking at BlackBerry, responsible for all aspects of cybersecurity and networking for the Corporation and BlackBerry customer services. He has more than 30 years of experience in Information Technology and has held leadership roles at IBM, AT&T, and Cisco, focused on networking, cybersecurity, and a wide range of IT and customer service responsibilities.
Mike holds a Bachelor of Science degree, with honors, in Geology from the University of Reading, and is a British Computer Society Chartered IT Professional.