On Saturday, September 28, to a crowd of cheering fans, Ciena Corporation’s OTN Speedwagon beat out seven other corporate rock bands and took the title of Best Corporate Band in America at the 13th Annual FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands.

Hailing from ten cities across the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom, OTN Speedwagon comprises 12 Ciena employees across various functions and departments, ranging from Engineering to Marketing and IT. The band’s name, a playful tribute to the 70s American rock band REO Speedwagon, derives from a networking technology called Optical Transport Network (OTN) that Ciena implements to transmit data across long distances.  

OTN Speedwagon competed against seven corporate bands from ePrize, Excella Consulting, Hasbro, Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, Mesirow Financial, Kiewit Corporation, and Olympus. Runners-up and winners in the Best-Of categories include:

  • Second place - “Detached Retina,” Excella Consulting – Arlington, Va.
  • Third place - “Cassius King,” Mesirow Financial – Chicago, Ill.
  • Best Bass Player – Lori Stassin with “Cassius King” of Mesirow Financial – Chicago, Ill.
  • Best Guitarist – Paul Bullock with “OTN Speedwagon” of Ciena Corp. – Hanover, Md.
  • Best Keyboardist – Nicolai Schurko with “Class Action” of Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin – Philadelphia, Pa.
  • The Steve Eck Memorial Best Vocalist Award – Gina Bloom with “Cassius King” of Mesirow Financial – Chicago, Ill.
  • Best Drummer – Jonathan Bruskin with “Detached Retina” of Excella Consulting – Arlington, Va.
  • Best Horns – Steve Darflinger with “OTN Speedwagon” of Ciena Corp. – Hanover, Md.

Held annually at the Rock Hall in Cleveland, Ohio, the battle of the corporate bands competition showcases the social and economic benefits of recreational music programs within the workplace. In addition to fostering team-building and increased morale, research shows that the positive effects of workplace music programs extend far past the social sphere, improving employee wellness by reducing depression and reversing the human body’s response to stress at the DNA level.

FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands is presented through a partnership with FORTUNE magazine and the Rock Hall, and is sponsored by the NAMM Foundation (National Association of Music Merchants), Gibson Guitars, Marshall Fridge and Fender Premium Audio.

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry and promote the pleasures and benefits of making music. NAMM's activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages. NAMM is comprised of approximately 9,000 Member companies located in more than 94 countries. For more information about NAMM or the proven benefits of making music, interested parties can visit www.namm.org, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc. is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational activities. 


FORTUNE is a global leader in business journalism with a worldwide circulation of more than one million and a readership of nearly five million, with major franchises including the FORTUNE 500 and the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For. FORTUNE Live Media extends the brand's mission into live settings, hosting a wide range of annual conferences, including the FORTUNE Global Forum. FORTUNE magazine’s online home is CNNMoney.com, the most visited and utilized business destination website.