Changes at Red Hat: Can Linux leader handle the delta between CEO A and CEO B

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Linux

CNET news is reporting that Red Hat CEO Matthew Szulik is stepping down effective January 1st and handing control of the world’s most popular enterprise Linux provider to former Delta airlines COO James Whitehurst. The article assures us that Mr. Whitehurst used to be a programmer and in fact runs four distributions of Linux at home (Fedora, OpenSUSE, Ubuntu, and … DSL? I’m curious to know what they are…).

The question on everyone’s minds is: how will this change in leadership affect Red Hat?

History has not smiled kindly on CxO changes, which have ranged from forcible replacements – such as Steve Jobs to Pesi-exec John Sculley in 1985 — to planned transitions, as when Michael Dell handed the reigns over to Kevin B. Rollins in 2004.

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