Telstra loses Rocca, Quilty in executive shakeout

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Telstra loses Rocca, Quilty in executive shakeout
Brendon Riley to replace Michael Rocca at Telstra.

Former Big Blue, St George execs brought in.

Telstra is again shaking out its executive ranks with chief operating officer Michael Rocca and public policy director David Quilty the latest to leave the telco.

Rocca, who spent 43 years at the company, will leave Telstra at the end of next month after overseeing the rebuild of Telstra's network in flood-ravaged Queensland and Victoria.

He will be replaced by former IBM Europe executive Brendon Riley (pictured).

Rocca was flagged to leave Telstra last March after a management shake-up left him acting chief operating officer, a role he assumed late the previous November.

But the appointment was confirmed permanent last May.

A month later, Rocca started merging Telstra's IT and network teams as part of an "integrated strategy for managing network and data centres within Telstra Operations".

Quilty out

Telstra also said today it had replaced public policy group managing director David Quilty with former St George Bank chief executive officer Paul Fegan.

Quilty was a regular speaker at telecommunications conferences on regulatory issues that Telstra faced.

Fegan will lead the new strategy and corporate services unit from next month, which incorporated the public policy unit.

And it covered communications, corporate strategy and mergers and acquisitions – parts of the business that were once the responsibility of former group managing director of corporate strategy Robert Nason.

Nason will now focus on Telstra's Project New three-year restructure, announced last September in a bid to simplify its business and become more profitable.

He will continue to "advise Telstra on its program of customer service improvements" – a key part of his role when he joined in November, 2009.

Shake outs

Shake outs have been a fact of life at Telstra since David Thodey became its CEO in May, 2009.

Consumer head David Moffatt was first to go, departing that November, months earlier than planned.

Later that month, group managing director of products Holly Kramer resigned.

Thodey's second shake up last March saw former British HP executive Gordon Ballantyne lead the carrier's consumer and channels business, replacing Glenice Maclellan who resigned after acting in the role since Moffatt's departure.

Kate McKenzie also earned an expanded role as chief marketing officer, as did Nason, who assumed "responsibility for corporate strategy, mergers and acquisitions, and the Program Office" – functions he now hands over in part to Fegan.

Telstra also lost its chief information officer John McInerney last June, replaced months later by former Westpac and chief information officer Patrick Eltridge.

Enterprise and government head Nerida Caesar also left Telstra at the end of last year.

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