Laurie Oswald

Title: Senior Vice President, Global Sales

Company: Vertiv

Education: Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Ohio University

I have nearly 20 years of experience in technology. I am focused on managing and understanding the disruption and transformation that’s happening in the industry, actively working to solve the biggest challenges for digital infrastructure, and supporting critical edge applications.

As Vertiv’s senior vice president of sales, I lead the company’s commercial strategy for key customers around the world within the cloud, hyperscale, telecom, OEM, and enterprise segments. I also am responsible for leading the technical sales organization for the America’s division.

Organizational Affiliations:

  • Infrastructure Masons, advisory council, 2018 to present. In addition to being on the advisory council, I have served as a speaker and panelist at iMasons events and recently became a military liaison focused on the education and recruitment of veterans to the data center industry. I am a first-generation college graduate, and I used my service in the U.S. military to fund my education and set myself on a path of leadership. As a military liaison for the Infrastructure Masons, I now encourage fellow veterans to pursue technology careers and use their unique skills to tackle the challenges of a constantly evolving digital economy.

  • viaPhoton, advisory board, 2020 to present. As an advisory board member, I provide input to company strategy based on my years of experience in the data center and telecommunications industry.

  • Founding member of Women at Vertiv Excel (WAVE), 2020 to present. WAVE is focused on supporting and advancing women throughout the Vertiv organization.

  • Thought leader, speaker, and panelist, including Omdia, COVID-19 Impact on the Data Center (2020), and iMasons End User Summit — “Top of Mind” (2020).

  • Girl Scouts of America, adult volunteer and lifetime member, 2008 to present. As a volunteer, I have worked with groups of girls on their Silver and Gold Award projects and encouraged them to explore science, technology, engineering, and math fields.


  • Top 100 Global Sales Leader

  • IM100 Award - Infrastructure Masons, 2020

What made you realize you wanted to pursue a career in technology?
Honestly, I didn’t originally set out to pursue a career in technology. After college, I landed a job working with a startup electronics manufacturer. I realized I had a passion for technology and a strong interest in how things work. I then spent several years working in the electrical industry before going to work for a global leader in digital infrastructure. I have been in this industry now for the past 20 years and am truly thankful for the opportunity to work and lead in the tech industry.

What three adjectives would you use to describe your journey in the industry so far?
Persistent, ethical, and hard-working.

What is your personal mantra?
I believe in accountability — I try to give 100% every day and hold myself and my team accountable for high performance.

Describe the highest point in your career so far and how you got there, including all the hurdles you had to jump (and the ones you tripped over and too).
The high point of my career came when I had the courage to take a risk. Two years ago, I made the difficult decision to leave a company where I worked for more than 15 years. I had great relationships and a passion for the company and what we did. However, I had the desire to try something new and made the decision to join the Vertiv team. The past two years at Vertiv have been very rewarding, and I find myself surrounded by great leadership and talent. I feel energized by where Vertiv is going and know I am contributing in a meaningful way.

As far as hurdles, there have been plenty. I started my career in the military, where, as a female, I was very much in the minority — especially at that time. I then began working in the electrical industry and now I work in the tech sector — both of which are male-dominated. I decided early on to focus on driving performance and high results in an effort to prove myself along the way. My team often describes me as “tough but fair,” which I feel has helped me to navigate potential gender bias.

What is your most admirable quality?
Commitment — I am deeply committed to my team and our success. I try to inspire others with energy, passion, and positivity. I am deeply grateful for the relationships I have formed throughout my career and for the support I've received from so many. I am committed to “paying it forward” and work hard to support the development of others.

What aspect of the industry do you think has the most potential for growth, and, on the other hand, which aspect do you think needs the most improvement?
The massive growth of data will continue at a rate and pace that we have never seen. This will drive disruption. Machine-to-machine technologies and artificial intelligence will play a huge role in making businesses more efficient. Also, there will be continued opportunity to solve the challenges associated with the cost and availability of power as well as the drive to deploy a greener energy footprint. While edge computing strategies will play out over many years, the shift of enterprise IT resources to cloud platforms and colocation facilities will continue. Bottom line, the data center industry is an exciting place to be!

When you imagine the future of the technology industry, what does it look like?
It seems that every day I read an article about an innovation that will change the way in which we live, work, or play. I have no doubt that technology will continue to drive change in our lives over the next decade and beyond. The IoT will fuel the growth of big data analytics, wearables will improve human performance, and our homes and offices themselves will become smarter. Facial recognition technologies, robots, and autonomous vehicles will become more prevalent. Whatever technological advances we may see in the coming years and decades, my hope is that we continue to see more women in technology creating, developing, and inspiring innovation.

What is the most valuable life lesson you have learned so far and how has it helped you in your career?
Take charge of your career, work hard and don’t be afraid to fail, volunteer for everything, and ask for what you want!

What three adjectives come to mind when you think about your future path?
Influential, strategic, and philanthropic.