Howdy partners (pun intended) and welcome back to our weekly roundup of channel news. This week we’ve got the biggest and best news from our friends at Cirrity, Westell (WSTL) and Carousel Industries.

Cirrity: Cloud solution provider Cirrity has been named as a Cisco Master Service Provider, which recognizes the company for achieving an elite level of expertise to sell and deliver cloud services. The vetting process included a services audit conducted by a third-party to deem if the company was worthy of Cisco’s highest partner distinction.

The designation recognizes Cirrity’s investment and commitment to providing Cisco cloud services, according to the announcement. Citrix said it will continue to actively sell Cirrity’s cloud services through its own sales channels as both companies work to further develop their joint cloud solutions.

“The change from Advanced to Master CMSP for our Cisco Powered solutions, along with our involvement in the Cisco Intercloud Fabric initiative, show our ability to provide best-of-breed services to our customers,” said Dan Timko, Cirrity president and chief technology officer, in a statement. “Achieving Master CMSP augments our ISO 27001 and Cloud Security Alliance STAR information security certifications to indicate strong third party validation of our business strategy and practices for delivering robust and secure cloud services.”

Westell: Wireless and intelligent site management provider Westell has appointed industry veteran Chuck Bernstein as its new channel chief, responsible for building out the company’s channel strategy.

Bernstein holds more than 25 years of sales experience and served as vice president of WorldWide Sales for TeleCommunication Systems Commercial Software Group before taking on his new role. He also has served as vice president of North American Sales at Net Optics and Tellalabs.

“We are very excited to have Chuck Bernstein join the Westell Team to lead our sales organization and channel development,” said Tom Gruenwald, president and CEO of Westell.“Chuck is an exceptional sales leader bringing extensive experience with carrier and large global enterprise customers. His skills in building and leading world-class sales teams will be invaluable as we drive growth in these key verticals.”

Carousel Industries: Unified communications, managed services and data solutions provider Carousel Industries is the latest company to sign on as a Skype for Business Launch Partner in North America, extending the company’s relationship with Microsoft and its solutions.

Carousel has already participated in several Microsoft initiatives surrounding the Skype for Business launch, including the company’s Project Neptune vendor workshop and Microsoft Ignite. The company has also been invited to attend the upcoming Skype for Business Advisory Council.

"Our team is fully aligned with Microsoft's strategy and solutions roadmap, and we have begun implementing training sessions, and are already coordinating one-to-one and one-to-many conversations among our entire customer base," said Ed Wadbrook, vice president of Applications and Collaborative Solutions at Carousel Industries. "We anticipate Skype for Business will help companies realize unprecedented collaboration and business productivity, and that the launch will present a natural migration path for existing Microsoft Lync environments."