Get to know Shanis Windland, Stacklok's new Chief Operating Officer

Shanis Windland joined Stacklok's leadership team in January 2024 as our Chief Operating Officer. In this post, Shanis shares why she chose to join the team and what motivates her about working at a startup.

Author: Shanis Windland
3 mins read
Jan 23, 2024

When contemplating your next career move and determining the right company or role for you, there is plenty to consider. There are key considerations like great technology, big market opportunity and liking your new team and manager. With Stacklok, all of these things were obvious to me.

While at VMware and Heptio, I got to see the community of open source up close. I saw truly authentic relationships that last, collaboration across companies and the desire to make real change in the world. The chance to be a part of this again at Stacklok and to do it in the security space was a no brainer for me. Software runs the world and unsafe software ruins the world. It is something that affects each and every one of us both personally and professionally.

But to figure out where I wanted to invest my energy and focus, I reflected on what really motivates me.

For me, it’s pretty simple. I want to solve problems that affect the entire organization (I call this "whole-pie" problem solving) and I want to work at an organization that reflects my personal values. 

Company culture is reflected in how people work every day. I am passionate about making sure that what we foster each day matches what is written on the website. That the ideas become a reality. Decision making, financial rigor and how people are treated are critical to the long-term health and success of an organization. Getting those right is non-negotiable.

In my role as VP of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at VMware—and most recently, as VP of Human Resources—I spent the last five years at VMware solving complex problems at scale. It was exciting to launch programs for a global workforce, to see the company almost double in headcount and to have a front row seat in the acquisition by Broadcom.

Although I learned a tremendous amount, the thing is, most of the time I was solving for a slice of the pie. Yes, there were times when my efforts would resonate throughout the whole organization, but typically, my focus was on solving problems in a specific vertical. Don’t get me wrong, organizations at scale solve huge problems every day, but it takes a long time and by necessity they tend to achieve fewer objectives.

Coming to Stacklok offers me the chance to impact, from the beginning, the decisions that lead to how the organization will operate at scale.

I will be solving whole pie problems and building the kind of organization that matters to me personally with some really awesome people.

Stacklok is a special place founded by two incredible humans, Craig McLuckie and Luke Hinds. They have the right experience to build the team and technology to help enterprise developers and open source communities make more secure software. I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity ahead and being on this journey with the entire team.

If working with our team sounds exciting to you, we would love to hear from you. Please check out our Careers page!

Shanis Windland

Chief Operating Officer

Shanis Windland, COO of Stacklok, is an experienced Operations and Finance executive. Prior to Stacklok, Shanis led HR in many capacities at VMware. Prior to joining VMware, she was the CFO of Heptio, an Accel- and Madrona-backed company that was acquired by VMware for $500 million. She serves on the board of Starform and Northwest Harvest.

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