Cogito Announces New Executive Leadership Appointments

The internal promotions celebrate the strategic and driven leaders committed to Cogito’s growth

BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Cogito, the leader in AI Coaching Systems for the enterprise, announced the internal promotions of four company leaders to align its people and organization best for the next phase of company growth. Joining Cogito’s C-Suite are Mark Leonard as Chief Revenue Officer and Shawn Hoyt as Chief Operating Officer. In addition, Craig Blake has been promoted to Vice President of Product Management and Kara Benedetto has been promoted to Vice President of People and Talent.

“The promotions of Mark, Shawn, Craig and Kara are a testament to the strong leadership they have displayed within the organization,” said Josh Feast, CEO and co-founder of Cogito. “Each comes with their diverse perspectives on how to accomplish our goal of continuing to lead the market in AI Coaching software. We’re excited to celebrate their dedication to Cogito’s continued success in the enterprise and their enhanced roles in driving the company forward to new levels of growth.”

Mark Leonard, Chief Revenue Officer

Joining the company in 2021 as Executive Vice President of Customer Success, Leonard brings his 25+ years of experience in CX and operating and selling large contact center solutions. Before Cogito, Leonard spent nine years supporting customer success and growth at Interactions, a leading customer care AI company. As Chief Revenue Officer, Mark will bring his passion for delivering exceptional customer experiences to drive Cogito’s revenue-generating operations and scaling its go-to-market capabilities overseeing Sales, Business Value Realization, Partnerships, Marketing, Business Development and Customer Success.

Shawn Hoyt, Chief Operating Officer

With extensive experience in business operations, deal management and legal, Hoyt will lead Cogito’s operations to support company growth. Hoyt has proven success in leading pricing, proposal, contracting, legal and vendor management activities within enterprise B2B SaaS providers, including Pegasystems and SessionM. As the company’s first Chief Operating Officer, Hoyt will operationalize Cogito’s evolving strategies and daily activities to meet long-term business goals.

Craig Blake, Vice President, Product Management

Leading strategy and ushering forward Cogito’s visionary product roadmap, Blake steps into the Vice President of Product position after supporting Cogito’s technical solutions and integration advancements. Blake has been heavily involved in the contact center space for much of his career, with 15 years at Nuance, where he oversaw cloud deployments, mobile application releases and speech design and development. He also served as Senior Director at Aspect, where he led his team on rapid application development, and Senior Product Manager at CallMiner, with responsibility for their real-time guidance and ingestion systems. Blake’s robust product experience will accelerate Cogito’s product development for current and future customers.

Kara Benedetto, Vice President, People and Talent

Kara is dedicated to celebrating the people of Cogito and will lead the company’s People and Talent functions in her new role. She has nurtured company cultures throughout her 25+ year HR career and built strong trust-based relationships across teams and executive leadership. Most recently, she spent 11 years as Vice President, Human Resources at Linedata, a global financial services software company, supporting employees in the areas of recruitment, talent management, benefits, employee engagement and overall HR strategy. Kara will focus on elevating Cogito’s mission and creating a richly diverse, equitable and inclusive work environment in this new position.

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About Cogito

Cogito’s AI Coaching System enables organizations to deliver empathy at scale. Our human-aware technology instantly analyzes hundreds of behaviors within conversations to provide live in-call guidance combined with a real-time measure of customer experience. Cogito is augmenting thousands of phone professionals in the world’s most successful enterprises – increasing revenue, enhancing service and elevating the quality of care. Cogito is a venture-backed software company located in Boston, MA. Learn more at


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Grace Bonacum

Cogito Corporation

Joel Makhluf

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