Charla Bunton-Johnson of Lightbits Labs Receives 2023 CRN Channel Chief Honors

SAN JOSE, Calif., February 6, 2023 – Lightbits®, the innovation leader in simple, efficient, and agile data platform solutions for any cloud, today announced that CRN®, a brand of The Channel Company, has recognized Charla Bunton-Johnson, Vice President, Global Alliances and Channels at Lightbits, on its 2023 Channel Chiefs list. Every year, this list honors the IT channel executives who work tirelessly to advance the channel agenda and deliver successful channel partner programs and strategies.

The 2023 Channel Chiefs have helped their solution provider partners and customers navigate an increasingly complex landscape of interconnected challenges and shifting industry dynamics. With the innovative strategies, programs, and partnerships of these Channel Chiefs in place, the solution provider community has continued to thrive. The 2023 CRN Channel Chiefs were selected by the editorial staff based on their record of business innovation and dedication to the partner community. This year’s list represents the top IT executives responsible for building a robust channel ecosystem.

“The data center is evolving in response to modern cloud-native applications and IO-intensive databases, like Oracle and Cassandra, that need a platform in a cloud that delivers high-performance, ultra-low latency, resiliency, and availability for VMware, Kubernetes, and OpenStack environments. However, native public cloud storage offerings have not afforded customers the benefits that have come to expect with their on-premises SAN. This has resulted in significant gaps in cloud-native storage. Lightbits addresses this need. As a channel-centric organization, Lightbits is working closely with its alliances and partners, like AWS and Azure, to provide a solution for customers who want all of the features of traditional on-premises SAN, but in a highly performant, flexible, and software-defined platform that they can deploy on the cloud of their choice. The recognition from CRN reflects this commitment and our continued investment in growing our channel as the demand for cloud solutions evolves,” said Charla Bunton-Johnson, Vice President of Global Alliances and Channels at Lightbits Labs.

Bunton-Johnson, who built WekaIO’s CRN 5-Star Partner Program, the Weka Innovation Network, is a channel veteran with more than two decades of experience with channels, alliances, CSPs, and OEMs. She’s tasked at Lightbits with driving growth velocity through the channel, forming and strengthening alliances that better enable partner success, and managing the firm’s global GoPurple program, with a keen eye on the cloud.  With a thriving channel-enablement program, the company is well-positioned to capitalize on the growing need for simple, efficient, and agile cloud solutions that enable switching mission-critical workloads from on-premises to the cloud. According to a C-suite executive survey by the IBM Institute for Business Value, 97% of enterprises have either piloted, implemented, or integrated cloud technology in their operations. Yet, while enterprises have successfully migrated peripheral, smaller workloads, most mission-critical workloads are still on-premises.1 Solution providers with a cloud specialty should take a hard look at the Lightbits channel program.

“Lightbits has built an innovative solution that affords the enormous opportunity for channel partners to enable their customers’ cloud transformation journey. Lightbits satisfies the need and demand we are hearing from customers who want to migrate their SAN-based workloads to the cloud. Our unique blend of disaggregated, clustered NVMe/TCP architecture combined with Intelligent Flash Management and rich enterprise data services simplifies public cloud storage management while delivering the industry’s highest performance, consistent low latency, and predictable low costs. It’s a complete multi- or hybrid-cloud data platform that scales up or down with business demand,” added Bunton-Johnson.

“This year’s list gives well-deserved recognition to the IT Channel Chiefs who are dedicated to driving the channel agenda and advocating for the development of strong channel partnerships,” said Blaine Raddon, CEO of The Channel Company. “Under their exceptional leadership, influence, and innovation, the IT channel vendor community continues to deliver solutions and services that meet the rapidly evolving needs of their solution provider partners and their customers.”

The 2023 CRN Channel Chiefs list will be featured in the February 2023 issue of CRN Magazine and online at


For more information on the Lightbits Go Purple program or to become a partner, go to or email


Additional resources:


1IBM, “3 Proven Ways IT Leaders Modernize Mission-Critical Workloads”, September 16, 2022.


About Lightbits Labs
Lightbits Labs® (Lightbits), offers a Complete Data Platform for any cloud in VMware, Kubernetes, and OpenStack orchestration environments. It enables organizations with a cloud-first strategy to move IO-intensive database, analytic, transactional, and streaming applications that may be on DAS or SAN to the cloud without compromise. It delivers high performance, consistent low latency, and predictable low costs that cloud-native block storage solutions cannot provide. The native NMVe/TCP and clustered architecture, coupled with innovative Intelligent Flash Management and rich enterprise data services solve the storage challenges endemic to cloud-native applications. Lightbits is backed by enterprise technology leaders [Cisco Investments, Dell Technologies Capital, Intel Capital, Lenovo, and Micron] and is on a mission to deliver a robust cloud platform with unmatched efficiency, agility, and flexibility.


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