Burnside, Bush, Kuppersmith again among women recognized in CRN magazine ‘Women of the Channel’ issue:

We’re happy to announce that for the second year in a row, three of CMIT Solutions’ franchise partners have made CRN magazine’s annual “Women of the Channel” list, the most prominent and prestigious roster of women in the IT sales channel:

  • Beth Burnside, owner of CMIT Solutions of Erie, Pa., since 2007.
  • Debi Bush, co-owner of CMIT Solutions of Denver since 2004.
  • Linda Kuppersmith, owner of CMIT Solutions of Stamford, Conn., since 2005, who also made the CRN list in 2010.
Beth Burnside, owner of CMIT Solutions of Erie, Pa.

Beth Burnside

CRN is a trade publication for computer resellers that published the 208-member list in its most recent issue. The magazine has named Women of the Channel for the last nine years to honor female IT executives’ success in generating revenue for their businesses and a good reputation for the channel.

What’s great about this recognition is that it comes in a field that’s traditionally been dominated by men. But Beth, Debi and Linda are successful, growing in their positions, connected to the channel, and active in the industry and their communities.

They also bring their professionalism and personality to the direct business relationships with small business clients, who depend on them to decipher what can often seem like alphabet soup. This is a critical part of our value proposition, that relationship local small business owners can build with other local small business owners. People like Beth, Debi and Linda are at the critical position in the channel.

Debi Bush, co-owner of CMIT Solutions of Denver

Debi Bush

Debi says her frequent attendance at IT channel networking events and trade association memberships are an essential part of her career.

“We know it’s important to be involved in the channel for growing our companies and taking advantage of relationships, knowledge and the opportunity to network with peers,” she says. “It helps us help our clients and make them more profitable.”

Having great franchise partners who happen to be women benefits the industry, which sadly seems to be losing ground when it comes to attracting professional women.

In 2008, women earned 57 percent of all bachelor’s degrees but only 18 percent of those in computer and information science — down from 37 percent in 1985, according to a 2010 National Center for Women & Information Technology report, “Women in IT: The Facts.” The same report says that in 2008, women held 57 percent of all professional occupations in the U.S. workforce but only a quarter of IT-related jobs, down from 36 percent in 1991.

About 20 of CMIT Solutions’ franchise partners are women — a significant number considering the declining influence of women in the IT field. The growing lack of diversity means, among other things, that the channel increasingly fails to reflect its customer base. In 2007, the report says, women made 45 percent of all domestic consumer electronics purchases and influenced 61 percent.

Beth, Debi and Kuppersmith say they’re doing everything they can to push against the trend. “I’ve heard from several of my female clients, ‘Finally, there’s a woman who can explain technology to me.’ We’re able to bring a special angle to all of it,” Linda says.

Linda Kuppersmith, owner of CMIT Solutions of Stamford, Conn.

Linda Kuppersmith

“For us, ownership of an IT business is much more of an endgame with long-term commitment than just a stop on the career ladder. It’s not just a job, it’s a life. That’s why you’re seeing us on the list for more than one year, because the nature of the business is long term.”

Are you a professional woman with an interest in technology and a strong desire to own a business with virtually unlimited growth potential? Believe us, we want to hear from you. Download the free franchise information report on this site, and let’s start talking about how you might be right to join a growing family of franchise partners managing technology for other small businesses around the country.