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COMMON Americas Advisory Council

Community » COMMON Americas Advisory Council

The COMMON Americas Advisory Council (CAAC) is a small, diverse group of individuals that represent IBM customers of varying sizes and industries. It was created to act as the liaison between IBM and COMMON in order to gauge the community reaction to strategic IBM decisions and future direction. CAAC members are encouraged to pool their expertise and know-how to gather requirements from the user community and pass them along to IBM

Current CAAC Members

Andy Buchholtz
Innovative Software Solutions inc

Ayden Butera
Creative Data Research

Karl Haggart
OneMain Financial

Vern Hamberg

Jasmine Kaczmarek
M.R. Williams

Pete Massiello

Mike McArdle
Western Technical College

Richard McCarroll
Innovative Software Solutions Inc

Carl Novit

Steve Pitcher
iTech Solutions Group a Service Express Company

Marina Schwenk
Everbrite LLC

Todd Stewart
Heartland CoOp

Jack Woehr
The Seiden Group


As part of COMMON’s advocacy program, you have an opportunity to provide feedback to help IBM enhance its systems. After your requirement is accepted, it will be visible in the system for review.

Current Openings

If you represent a company that uses IBM i as its primary computing platform and have interest in joining CAAC if an opening develops, please submit an application.

Organizational Structure

The maximum number of individuals on the CAAC is sixteen.

  • Up to four people on the CAAC can be business partners, ISVs or consultants.
    • Their role is to represent their clients, not their business
  • One person on the CAAC will represent the IT education community
  • Remaining CAAC members represent their own company
    • The individual’s company uses IBM i as its primary computing platform
    • This group should have a balance of business, management, hardware and software skills
  • A maximum of two members of the CAAC may also be on the COMMON Board of Directors

Term Limits

  • CAAC members serve a two-year term
  • After two years, the term is renewable once based on active participation throughout the current term and with approval from the CAAC and the COMMON Board 


When recruiting new members, the CAAC looks for individuals with the following characteristics: 

  • General IT knowledge
  • General business knowledge
  • Leadership qualities
  • Vision for the future in IT terms 

The following are the list of CAAC membership requirements:

  • Have 3+ years of experience in App Dev, Sys admin or Database/IFS
  • Be a current member of COMMON throughout CAAC term
  • Approved for membership in CAAC by the CAAC membership and the COMMON Board
  • Sign a Feedback Program Agreement (FPA) between employer and IBM
  • Attend at least 1 of every 3 consecutive COMMON conferences
  • Participate in CAAC meetings, both Face-to-Face and conference calls
  • Attend at least 2 of every 3 consecutive CAAC Face-to-Face meetings with IBM – usually in Rochester, MN
  • Self-fund or have your company fund travel to Rochester for the in-person meetings.
  • Attend monthly CAAC business meetings – typically the first Tuesday of the month
  • Participate in at least one CAAC RFE Subgroup (AppDev, Db2IFS, SysAdmin) – these meet monthly
  • Be an active team member, willing to learn, ask questions, and give feedback to IBM
  • Represent and advocate for the IBM i SMB community in America
  • It is COMMON’s discretion, including the COMMON Board and/or the CAAC, to review and interview all applicants before final determination is made for each applicant. The list of selected candidates and their applications will be submitted to IBM for final approval.