“I am serving on the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council because as a long time advocate for removing gender bias in the workplace, I have fought for equality across the genders (regardless of race). While some progress has been made, much more is to be done. While at IBM I was also co-chair of the persons with disabilities forum working to eliminate boundaries for talent across the company. And, as the proud parent of a gay son, I am equally focused on enabling the rights of the LBTQIA+ community. Our country and our university have a responsibility to enable ALL people to compete on an equal playing field…and right now we have much to do in order to live up to that responsibility.”
Background and Experience
Mike Rhodin spent 33 years in IBM and rose to the level of Sr. Vice President and Officer. He was responsible for the creation of IBM’s Software Solution business including much of its Smarter Planet portfolio. After the demonstration of the Watson system on Jeopardy, he founded IBM’s Watson business around this groundbreaking technology, launching its cloud-based services and the first industry vertical, Watson Health.
Prior to that, he led many large-scale organizations within IBM, including IBM’s European operations based in Zurich, as well as it’s Collaboration Business Unit. He ran numerous engineering organizations within the company across office systems, networking systems and the early stages of IBM’s Internet of Things technologies. Since his retirement from IBM in 2017, he has taken on the role of Independent Director for a number of organizations, ranging from advising startups from their incubation phase, advising venture capital firms, and serving as a board member on private equity backed technology companies, HZO and SyncSort. In addition, he serves as a member of the Supervisory Board of TomTom, based in Amsterdam, and on the International Advisory Board for Santander Group, a leading International bank based in Madrid.