In the latest installment of our People of Pure series, we get to know Kelly Greene, who is a 10-year Pure Storage veteran, Director of Logistics and Customer Fulfillment, and a trophy-winning professional pool player.


If there’s one thing Kelly Greene knows about, it’s how to parlay struggle into success. 

Having lost her parents at an early age, Kelly faced the responsibility of raising her 12-year-old sister while trying to start her career in tech. 

“I had to grow up very fast and step up to the plate,” Kelly said. “But what it taught me was because I was able to handle all of that during that period in my life, it taught me how to aspire to have the drive to be like, ‘Okay, no matter what gets thrown on my plate, I can handle it.’”

This “I-can-handle-anything” approach led Kelly into a career in data storage and ultimately to her current role as Director of Logistics and Customer Fulfillment at Pure Storage, not to mention a shelf full of pool tournament trophies. 

It’s probably most accurate to say that Kelly knows how to set up a shot, starting with the company that would become Dell EMC. 

The EMC Days—Setting Up the Cue Ball

Before joining Pure, Kelly worked for a company called Data Domain (which was ultimately acquired by EMC, which is now Dell EMC). She was in service logistics, doing things like implementing new vendors, transitioning inventory from one depot to another, and partnering with vendors to ensure customer-first results. 

Dell’s acquisition of EMC eventually led to the transfer to Pure. 

“In my previous role at EMC, it was just kind of stale,” Kelly said. “I wasn’t enthusiastic about doing what I was doing every day; whereas in this role, even to this day, as a director, I am learning something new all the time.”

Pure was only five years old when Kelly joined. This was the big “break” (when you smash the triangle of pool balls at the opening shot) she was looking for. 

Joining Pure—A Double Bank Shot into the Pocket

Kelly knew Pure was the right place for her, because, when she joined, it was still in its heady pre-growth stage, so it was just the challenge she was looking for. 

“I really liked the idea of being in a start-up atmosphere because you’re really able to give your ideas, your insights,” she said. “You have this mentality of, ‘There is no wrong answer.’ It’s basically what are we going to do to build this organization, to streamline it, and make it effective while we can service our customers in the field, whether it’s our depot network, our field engineering network, our repair—the whole supply chain—just building that model out, and that’s what I helped do in the beginning when we first had a service logistics team at Pure Storage.”

Now, helping Pure customers globally with logistics and fulfillment, Kelly gets quite a lot thrown onto her plate daily.

“My team is on call 24×7,” she said. “We’re a ‘follow-the-sun’ model, so we are dealing with customer escalation globally. We’re on the frontlines for customer dispatches when the customer needs a service event done out in the field, whether it’s for a part or a field engineer. We’re partnering with our vendors so that they can give the level of service that we are paying them for. So we’re doing all of that activity in my organization.”

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Career Growth—Clearing the Table without Sinking the Eight Ball

Outside of the office, Kelly plays a lot of pool—not just recreationally but professionally (she’s collected five or six trophies)—a skill she says has parallels to her work in logistics

“You have to be very strategic in where you place your cue ball on the table to make your next shot. So, in some sense, you can apply the same logic to the business; whether we implement a new depot out in the field, like pool, I’m strategically placing the balls on the table for my next move.”

Kelly’s next shot? Continuing to grow in her career while creating a better work-life balance. 

“I’m trying to find that balance because I don’t sleep much,” she said. “And it’s not because I wait until the last minute. It’s because there’s a lot going on in my world where just everything has to get done. There’s just a lot of moving pieces.”

That said, Kelly’s growth mindset always has her looking to evolve in her role. 

“The executive team at Pure have been and continue to look at my skill set and are mentoring me to the next level.”

And when Kelly gets there, don’t think it will get to her head or affect her work ethic. 

“I’m the type of person that’s like, regardless of title, I’m just heads-down, get the work done, do what needs to be done, move on to the next. Because at the end of the day, we’re all people. Whether you’re a senior director, director, VP, whatever, CEO, we’re all people. But I try not to focus so much on my title more than just respecting everybody that I work with and collaborating with all those individuals to get the job done.”

In the end, isn’t that what it’s all about? Getting the job done, or in pool-speak, clearing the table without sinking the eight ball. 

Kelly said her early struggles are what ultimately set her up for success in the game of life. 

“A lot of eagerness and drive that I have in my career has a lot to do with my past,” Kelly said. “When you say your past really molds who you are—it really does. One thing I’ve learned is that life is truly short. Everything that I’ve accomplished up to this point, I never take for granted. I’m very grateful for all the people that have been placed in my life to get me where I am today.”

You’d look good in orange. Check out job openings here at Pure Storage.