Robert C. Paul has served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Compuware since April 2008. Prior to that time, Mr. Paul was President and Chief Operating Officer of Compuware Covisint since its acquisition by Compuware in March 2004. Mr. Paul had spent nearly three years at Covisint prior to the acquisition.
Company Management Paul Czarnik Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer [see bio]
Daniel S. Follis, Jr. Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary [see bio]
Laura Fournier Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer [see bio]
Peter Karmanos, Jr. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer [see bio]
Bob Paul President and Chief Operating Officer [see bio]
Denise Starr Chief Administrative Officer [see bio] Company Management Bios
Paul Czarnik Chief Technology Officer Paul Czarnik is what is referred to as a ”lifer” at Compuware. He joined the company in 1981 as a contract programmer for the companyâ€™s Professional Services organization. And with the exception of a brief ”prodigal” period when he left to start up his own successful software and services company, Paul has worked his way through many technical and management positions at Compuware, en route to his current position as CTO.
A programmer at heart, Paul thrives on learning more about the vast and wide-ranging technology industry so that he can directly and immediately apply that knowledge to his work. Heâ€™s got an eagle eye trained on delivery and is a proponent of Agile Development. Paul also believes in working with the Compuware Sales organization, and feels very comfortable having a sales person at his shoulder to share customer feedback and needs.
He leads a team of more than a thousand employees who he refers to as ”proficient and prolific technicians.” This team delivers world-class Compuware products and support to customers around the globe.
Paul attributes his achievement and sustainability to his own philosophy of technology development, patterned after the standard industry term ”FUD,” which typically means Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. His interpretation of FUD is Focus, Urgency and Discipline. Those guiding words have served him, and Compuware, well for more than 25 years.
Paul attended Wayne State University while working the night shift as a programmer at Art Center Hospital in Detroit. He is an accomplished musician and songwriter, who lives in Union Lake with his wife and former Compuware employee, Donna, and their two children, Alexander and Ekaterina. The Czarnik family also enjoys getting away to their cottage in Au Gres, Michigan to soak up all that nature has to offer. [Back]
Dan Follis Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary Dan is an avid sports enthusiast and participant, so it’s not surprising that time on the ice rink contributed to his coming to Compuware. In 1998, his former youth hockey coach was Compuware’s general counsel. He remembered the young hockey defenseman’s determination and sense of fairness when Dan, after litigating in Chicago courtrooms for four years, applied to join the Compuware team as Senior Counsel. In this role, Dan was tasked with managing the company’s corporate litigation, focusing on all employment matters, intellectual property infringement and contract disputes among other duties. Dan managed the high-stakes litigation against IBM, which involved complex antitrust and intellectual property claims, resulting in a $400 million settlement in favor of Compuware.
Dan’s extensive knowledge of litigation and corporate law and his keen ability to effectively apply it when needed vaulted him in 2006 to Compuware’s Associate General Counsel position. Here, his ability to recognize and utilize the talents of those on Compuware’s internal legal staff and effectively manage outside counsel, allowed the company to save more than 50 percent of its annual legal fees.
Today, Dan leads the entire Compuware legal team, providing the company with comprehensive and practical advice for a wide range of legal matters including commercial litigation, employment law, immigration, intellectual property, mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, international law and SEC compliance. This seems a natural path for the attorney who made the Dean’s list and Law Review while attending Detroit College of Law before transferring to complete his law degree at University of Michigan Law School in 1994.
Dan and his wife, Maureen, reside in Grosse Pointe Park and share in the excitement of raising their two young boys. Continuing in his sporting life outside of work, Dan has helped to coach his sons’ hockey teams, and even plays pickup hockey when his schedule allows. Golf is also a sporting love of Dan’s, although he preferred not to make public his handicap. He also has been known to play “music” on occasion in a Detroit rock band. [Back]
Laura Fournier Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer To direct the finances of a worldwide company like Compuware takes all the attributes you would expectâ€”intelligence, dedication and plenty of hard work. For Laura Fournier, Compuware’s Executive Vice President, CFO and Treasurer, there’s one more very important componentâ€”lots of heart. Lots of heart for the job, and lots of heart for the team she works with.
In fact, Laura followed her heart all the way along her career path. Although starting off with a degree in elementary education, Laura took a position in the accounts payable department of a lumberyard. In the process, she discovered a true passion, and went on to get her accounting and finance degree at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Laura credits UNLV for her rapid success, having been challenged hard enough in her studies to pass her CPA exam on the first try. Several successful years in public accounting followed, ultimately leading Laura to the post of Senior Manager at Laventhol and Horwath. Compuware became one of Laura’s most challenging and interesting clients. As she explains, “Compuware was always doing something different!” The opportunity to move over to Compuware appeared in 1990, when Laura was also considering an attractive post with a major automaker. Once again, she followed her heart, choosing the position in which she felt she would never become “a brick in the wall.” She chose Compuware, joining as Director of Internal Audit and Controller.
Today, Laura’s responsibilities include overseeing Compuware’s Finance and Human Resources organizations. She also performs the treasury function and guides strategic planning and all business practices and policies related to finance. She has experienced some of the company’s greatest moments in her present role, including the crowning achievement of going public. Although the role brings no shortage of challenges, Laura credits her success to her ability to step back from complicated situations and apply common sense to make decisions for the greater good of the company and its people.
One of Laura’s mentors once assured her that “Good people do not languish at Compuware.” She has cherished those words and made them her own guiding principle in building and guiding what she believes is the best accounting team in the business. As leader of this team, Laura works hard to continue honing her skills and maintains her CPA status to this day.
Laura has also built a successful team outside of her Compuware business unitsâ€”one that brings comfort and joy to dozens of families each holiday season. Working with friends, fellow Compuware employees and the St. Vincent de Paul organization, Laura helps bring truckloads of holiday gifts and food to more and more families each year.
Laura and her husband make their home in Mt. Clemens, Michigan. Whenever she can, she enjoys spending time with her two children and her grandchildren. [Back]
Peter Karmanos, Jr. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer If youâ€™ve met Peter Karmanos, Jr., youâ€™ve met passion personified. As Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Compuware, Pete uses that passion every day to ensure that the company delivers value to its customers. How? Simple–through the hottest distributed products in the market, through outstanding professional services and through the most-respected mainframe software in the world, Compuware helps make its customers more productive.
Getting the company to where it is today, however, has not always been so simple. Flashback to 1973, when Pete sat in his dining room with two buddies and gambled. The stakes were higher than he couldâ€™ve imagined at the time, because with $3,000 each in tax-return money, Pete and his friends formed Compuware, a company that would become a worldwide leader in delivering technology value to customers. Pete, along with the late Thomas Thewes and Allen Cutting, Jr., wanted to build â€œâ€¦a 20 to 25 person company that would be a fun place to work.â€ Instead, they created Detroitâ€™s technology giant, with more than 4,000 employees and greater than $1.1 billion in annual revenue.
Since Compuware began, Peteâ€™s had a front seat on the rollercoaster of the technology industry, and heâ€™s seen it all. Heâ€™s seen the fads come and go. Heâ€™s seen little sock puppets star in $2 million TV commercials only to end up bankrupt and on the auction block. What does it take to thrive in the midst of the madness? As Pete will tell you, thereâ€™s no big secret. Itâ€™s a time-tested formula consisting of highly visible leadership, hands-on management, a keen awareness of whatâ€™s happening in the industry and–most importantly–a strong foundation.
For Pete, that foundation is the straightforward, unwavering mission of Compuware–to deliver value through technology, allowing customers to focus on what they do best, from selling cars to selling widgets. This focus has allowed Pete and his worldwide teams to see through the trends and fads and build real solutions that customers want and need. With solutions that help software performance surpass expectations, Compuware continues to help people do things with computers.
Compuware has been called the blue-collar software company, and perhaps that all began at Peter Karmanos, Sr.â€™s diner in Detroit. They called it Peteâ€™s Place, though it was really named Grand & Lahser Hamburgers. Thatâ€™s where Peter Jr. learned firsthand what it meant to meet the expectations of customers. And the value of coming to work every day and getting something done has stayed with Pete since his days running the cash register.
Another thing thatâ€™s stuck with Pete since his days in the diner is his respect for the hardworking people who help drive business forward every day. Having well overshot his goal of building a 25-person company, Pete also strove to over-deliver on the promise of giving his employees a fun place to work. Today, with its fresh, open design, incredible views, health club, day care facility and many other employee amenities, the Compuware headquarters building in Downtown Detroit is a perfect encapsulation of Compuwareâ€™s fun, friendly culture.
Pete is an avid gardener, a master gardener in fact. Heâ€™s also a member of Mensa and has had the good fortune to have his name be one of the (incorrect) answers on a famous trivia game show. He is also an athlete and sports fan, which led Pete into co-ownership of three hockey teams–the Carolina Hurricanes (National Hockey League), the Plymouth Whalers (Ontario Hockey League), and the Florida Everblades (East Coast Hockey League)–and drove him to create youth hockey programs for the children of Southeast Michigan.
In addition to his personal and business pursuits, Pete is deeply committed to philanthropy. Pete has made gifts of more than $50 million to establish and support the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, the only nationally recognized center to be named for a woman. Pete, along with Compuware employees around the world, supports a wide variety of other causes. Pete attended Wayne State University in Detroit, before pursuing his fascination with business and technology.
Pete lives in the metropolitan Detroit area with his wife Danialle and their newborn twins Socrates and Leonidas. Pete now has five sons and eight grandchildren.
Danialleâ€”in addition to her ongoing work as a nationally acclaimed video producerâ€”founded Danialle Karmanosâ€™ Work It Out (DKWIO), a 501(c)3 organization that fights childhood obesity by providing kids with the tools they need to make healthy choices. Pete and Danialle enjoy movies (with popcorn and “Milk Dudes”), traveling, reading the paper and golfing. The couple is already working on ideas for the documentary they’d like to co-produce someday. [Back]
Bob Paul President and Chief Operating Officer, Compuware Bob Paul is a business leader with a proven knack for gettingâ€”and keepingâ€”companies focused on what they do best for their customers. As President and COO of Compuware, Paul puts these capabilities to use as leader of the company’s worldwide products and services operations, the organization’s transformational Compuware 2.0 initiative and a number of other key functions, such as product management, marketing and communications, technical sales support, and recruiting, training and career development.
Before this position, Paul served as President and COO of Compuware Covisint and was instrumental in helping to facilitate Compuware’s acquisition of Covisint in 2004. Prior to his Covisint days, Bob’s experiences include being the President of SYNAPZ, a provider of web-based supply chain management procurement applications for the auto industry. Bob was also President and COO of Coherent Networks, Incorporated (CNI).
His position at CNI gave Bob the opportunity to experience the second of three turnarounds in which he has played a leading role. By guiding the company to focus on what its customers valued, and by applying technology and services to solve those problems, Bob and his team were able to take out 36 percent of the company’s operating costs in his first nine months at the company and attain 72 percent of annual revenues by the end of the first full quarter of the subsequent year.
Bob’s influence at Covisint was even more significant. Coming in as a Vice President of Sales and Marketing in October 2001, Bob learned that the company was competing in too many application spaces and did not have the resources to succeed in all of them effectively. Bob was key player on the team responsible for focusing the company on the things it was competitively qualified to doâ€¦areas that would also provide sustainable revenue. With Bob’s help, Covisint grew its registered user base to almost 100,000 in the first year of the turnaround, nearly quadrupling it. During this same timeframe, Covisint’s results featured a 56 percent operating cost reduction, while the company maintained top-line revenue objectives.
Advancing to CEO and President of Covisint, Bob’s next challenge was to manage the acquisition of his company. Part of the turnaround for Covisint was the realization that Covisint customers often require substantial development and operational support when implementing services. With an extended services organization, Covisint could provide even greater value to its customer base.
So Bob and his team went shopping for a large company with experience doing major IT-based projects. A headquarters in Detroit would be a strong plus. And above all, the purchasing company had to be a place where high-performance people were welcomed and respected. Compuware had its offer on the table within seven days. On March 1, 2004 the acquisition was completed.
In addition to his dedication to Compuware, Bob is an active industry citizen. He speaks on IT topics at business schools and industry events all over the world. He also authors supply chain management articles for business publications.
Beyond corporate walls, Bob has always been a serious sports enthusiast. He attended Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan on a soccer scholarship and earned recognition as a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics All-American in the sport. Bob continues to play soccer, and has coached several teams, including the Olympic Development Team for Michigan soccer. Currently, he coaches his son’s under-seven team on weekends. Bob is also a golfer and former University of Michigan club rugby player. In support of his golf habit, Bob served as President of Walnut Creek Country Club.
Born and raised in England until he was 12, Bob now lives in Northville, Michigan with his wife, four kids, and two dogsâ€”a treasured Bernese mountain dog and an equally beloved mutt. When not working or coaching, Bob can usually be found cheering on his kids at one of their many extracurricular performances and sporting events.