Get to Know John Brigden

John living out his passion for software at Cisco.

He's an avid sailor. He grew up in Wisconsin with three brothers and five sisters. And if he could meet one person, dead or alive, it would be Thomas Jefferson.

He's John Brigden—senior vice president of Software Strategy and Operations. He joined Cisco in August 2013 and is responsible for developing our software business strategy and aligning resources and capabilities to grow our software businesses. His focus includes: software offer structure, go-to-market acceleration, operations, management, consumption models, licensing and entitlement programs.

Educated as an electrical engineer and attorney, John's professional interests have straddled law and business. Career highlights include: a seven-year stint in the UK leading a large software company, general counsel actively involved in driving successful technology partner ecosystems and acquisitions while at VERITAS, and participating early on with an internet startup in the late '90s that grew to 300 employees and reached $100 million in revenue. He has also held positions with Symantec, Shutterfly and Silicon Graphics. Prior to those experiences, John was an intellectual property attorney representing technology companies in disputes and strategic transactions.

Aside from his first passion—his family—John's two great interests are software and sailing competitively. “Software has gone from packaged diskettes to now endless apps seamlessly downloaded to devices, open source, continuous development environments and open platforms,” he says. “It's been a natural interest of mine for 20-plus years.” His childhood hero was U.S. Olympic gold medalist sailor, Peter Barrett.

When he's not leading Cisco's Software Operating Office, John loves hiking and traveling with his family—Kate, his wife of 20 years, and their children Ryan (18) and Claire (16).

John with wife Kathryn, son Ryan and daughter Claire at Claire’s middle school graduation.
John racing in a J70 regatta.
John and Kathryn at England's Windsor Castle.

You Would Never Know This But...

  • When I was 12, I won my first sailing regatta.
  • If I could have any talent in the world, it would be a musician.
  • When I was a child, I wanted to be an astronaut when I grew up.
  • I love to snack on popcorn.
  • The best trip I ever took was to Hawaii with my family when my children were four & six.

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