Windstream Shocker: Olen Scott Out, Curt Allen In as Channel Chief

Curt Allen became Sandler Partners' president of channel before retiring in September.

Edward Gately, Senior News Editor

October 26, 2017

3 Min Read
Surprised Businessman

**Editor’s Note: Click here to see which channel people were on the move in September.**

Channel vet Curt Allen is emerging from retirement to take over as Windstream‘s channel chief, replacing Olen Scott, who took over the position in late February.


Windstream’s Olen Scott

Scott became Windstream’s channel chief immediately after the company’s acquisition of EarthLink closed. He previously was EarthLink’s vice president of partner channels.

Allen’s official title is senior vice president of channel. He was president of X4 Solutions, the master agent that was acquired by fellow master agent Sandler Partners. He became Sandler’s president of channel before retiring in September.

Allen tells Channel Partners he’s “incredibly excited” about the opportunity at Windstream.

“After wrapping up 15 months post acquisition (Sandler acquiring X4) and completing the integration of the two businesses, my plan was to take significant time off and probably start another business later next year,” he said. “After speaking with Layne (Levine, president of Windstream’s enterprise business division) about the team he was assembling and the energy around building the channel program the way it should be, I was easily sold on jumping back in. Subsequent conversations with (Windstream president and CEO) Tony Thomas confirmed for me the commitment the organization has to the channel from the very top.” 


Windstream’s Curt Allen

Scott is leaving Windstream to pursue other opportunities. He couldn’t be reached for comment.

Levine tells Channel Partners that Scott had some personal opportunities that led to his decision to leave Windstream. He will remain with the company through the end of the year, and Allen will come on board on Nov. 13.

Allen is somebody “who really understands what we are going through,” Levine said.

The overarching theme is we’re moving fast to become the go-to provider for our channel partners to help their clients with their technology migration … and no one’s better positioned from a products and leadership perspective than Windstream, and now we have to execute,” Levine said. “This is not status quo; this is us aggressively doing things to move the business so we’re easy to do business with, and people think differently about us and the opportunity to migrate to a new technology.”

“When you look at the market opportunity brought about by M&A activity and the evolving technology landscape (SD-WAN, UCaaS, etc.), combine that with the solutions and network assets Windstream’s own recent acquisitions have brought into the portfolio, and then add the partner community’s fervent desire for a healthy and competitive Windstream channel as a key component of their go-to-market strategies, I could not pass on the chance to contribute in whatever way I can to making this the best channel program in the market,” Allen said. “I believe my extensive background on the agent/master agent side gives me a unique perspective on how we might do that.”

Earlier this month, Windstream appointed Michael Brennan to head of national and strategic programs. The position is newly created and he will work with the channel chief.

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About the Author(s)

Edward Gately

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

As news editor, Edward Gately covers cybersecurity, new channel programs and program changes, M&A and other IT channel trends. Prior to Informa, he spent 26 years as a newspaper journalist in Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

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