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Tableau sales chief Kelly Wright announces retirement, calls decision ‘bittersweet’

Kelly Wright
Kelly Wright
Kelly Wright, a sales whiz who helped build Tableau Software into a powerhouse in data visualization, announced today that she plans to retire from the Seattle-based company at the end of the year.
Wright joined Tableau as its first salesperson in 2005, and quickly rose through the ranks to lead the company’s sales operation.
“Kelly has played a key role in our growth,” said Tableau CEO Christian Chabot in a press release. “From our start-up phase to our IPO and beyond, Kelly has provided the sales leadership we needed and built a world-class sales team. I thank her deeply for her years of service and dedication to our mission.”
In the release, Wright called the decision “bittersweet.”
“I love Tableau, our incredible team, and the positive impact we have on our customers. I am extremely proud of all we have built and accomplished together,” said Wright, who served as executive vice president of sales. “After 11 years leading sales at Tableau, I look forward to spending more time with my family. I will continue in my current role this year, as we take our time to find and transition to our new global sales and field operations leader.”
Under Wright’s leadership, sales have ballooned. During the third quarter of 2015, Tableau reported revenues of $170.8 million, a 64 percent increase. The company — which employs 2,800 and is on pace to add another 1,000 staffers this year — is now valued at $6.4 billion, with the stock down five percent today.
Wright previously worked in sales at Southwestern, Dale Carnegie and Bank of America. She holds an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and an undergraduate degree from Stanford University.
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