About Us

What makes Palisade Compliance different?

Since 2011, Palisade Compliance has grown into the largest independent, Oracle-focused advisory firm. Now, with more than 400 clients all over the world, we are the clear industry leader for companies and governments looking for help with Oracle.

Our company story

The Palisade Compliance story started in 1995 when our founder and CEO, Craig Guarente, began his career with Oracle. For the next 16 years Craig worked at Oracle in various roles, ultimately becoming their global vice president of contracts and business practices, as well as the global process owner for Oracle’s LMS audit teams.

Managing a team of over 1000 and covering billions of dollars in revenue, Craig gained unparalleled insights into Oracle, their behavior, and how they frustrated their customers.

Craig negotiating for Oracle, circa 1997.

Our experienced team

Palisade Compliance has over 250 years of Oracle related experience on staff. In fact, the Palisade Compliance delivery team is 100% former Oracle contracts, LMS compliance, business practices, and sales. While still with Oracle, our team:

  • Created and built Oracle’s global contracts organization
  • Lead Oracle’s business practices groups around the world
  • Developed Oracle LMS global audit processes, tools, and methodologies
  • Delivered license and contracts training throughout Oracle and to Oracle customers.

Palisade Compliance technology

Determining your position with Oracle requires you to analyze your Oracle contracts and usage. Palisade Compliance has invested eight years and millions of dollars developing proprietary technologies and methodologies to analyze both.

Our tools and engines can track, measure, and report on any product Oracle sells. Results are designed to provide you with facts and flexibility, and not restrict you to having to buy more Oracle.

We will never sell you licenses for software to help you solve a problem with licensing software or cloud. Our technology is designed to help answer questions, solve problems, and provide you with accurate information you need to stay in control.


We do not resell, or make money from the sale of any product, whether it’s an Oracle product or the product of one of our partners. Virtually every other company offering Oracle license management or optimization services are also Oracle resellers or integrators. These companies have an inherent conflict of interest. When they find compliance issues, it is a lucrative potential revenue source for them.

When we find potential compliance issues, we work with our client to exhaust all alternative ways of responsibly resolving the issue, instead of simply paying Oracle (or a reseller) more money.

Oracle focus

Oracle compliance and advisory services are all we do. While many other companies try to cover everything, we stay focused on one thing – our client’s position with Oracle. Oracle is unique and does business differently from other software and cloud companies. Our focus enables us to better predict Oracle’s behavior and stay current on everything Oracle does.

Oracle products and services are incredibly diverse, and Oracle has acquired more than 100 companies over the years. We can also help you with any product or service Oracle has acquired. We go deeper into solving our clients’ problems with Oracle and their acquisitions than anyone else.

Our clients

Our clients’ success in tackling their challenges and charting a path of their own, unencumbered by Oracle’s high costs or aggressive sales and audit tactics, is the measure of our success, too. While some of our work becomes public, as it did with our support of Mars and the State of Oregon, most of our success remains behind the scenes as we always protect confidentiality.

Our clients are so satisfied with our services that they have agreed to public case studies, recorded videos, and providing references. They have given Palisade Compliance a Net Promotor Score of 93 (Apple Net Promotor Score is 72).

Our Team

The Palisade Compliance team provides advice based on decades of combined experience as Oracle employees, and outsiders facing Oracle across the negotiating table.

Craig Guarente

CEO and Founder

Craig is the CEO of Palisade Compliance, and founded the company in 2011. Before this, Craig worked at Oracle for over 15 years. Starting as a contract specialist drafting database license contracts, he worked his way up the organization until he was global vice president of contracts, business practices, and migrations. In addition to his global VP role, Craig was also the global process owner for Oracle’s customer audit teams (LMS), a member of Oracle’s CIO advisory board, and Oracle’s representative on the Oracle user group’s contract and licensing advisory board.

Craig is also a thought leader in the areas of contract administration, negotiations, outsourcing, business process reengineering, and contract process automation. He has been an advisor to companies across the globe, helping them optimize and streamline their contracting policies, practices, and tools.

Craig has been a featured speaker at conferences for groups such as the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM), where he held a seat on the board of directors, the International Business Software Managers Association (IBSMA), and the ITAM Review.

Outside work, Craig is an active member of his community. He is a board member of the non-profit group Courage 2 Connect NJ, and a volunteer in his local Meals On Wheels chapter, organizing and delivering meals to those who need assistance



Stephen Sopko

Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder

Stephen is the co-founder and chief operating officer of Palisade Compliance, responsible for service delivery, business operations, and the infrastructure needed to deliver top-quality advisory and technical analysis to our clients worldwide. Stephen brought 25-plus years of experience leading technology, contracting and entrepreneurial ventures to Palisade Compliance. 

While at Oracle, Stephen was the vice president responsible for over 300 contracts and business practices staff across their Europe, Middle East, and Africa division. He also led a global effort to reinvent Oracle’s business processes, with the goal of making them more transparent while improving ease of doing business for Oracle customers.

Prior to Oracle, Stephen led sales support organizations for Dell, and pioneered the global delivery of legal processes (contract negotiation and analysis) for companies such as IBM, HP, Microsoft, and Marathon. He is a former advisory board member for the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM), and a speaker at National Contract Management Association conferences.

Stephen started his career in the early 1990s as a US Federal contracting officer, leading negotiations with Nobel laureates, and successfully opened the former Soviet Union to US Federal contracts for scientific research.

Stephen is a published author and game designer, and has interests ranging across history, map collecting, industrial archaeology, space commercialization, boating and bicycle touring. He lives on the Space Coast of Florida.


Leadership Team

Dan DeVenio

Vice President and Chief Client Officer

Read Dan’s bio

Anna-Rita Stanley-Best

APAC – Managing Director

Read Anna-Rita’s bio

Max Shlopak

Vice President, Strategic Advisory

Read Max’s bio

David Arnold

Vice President, Delivery & Advisory

Read David’s bio

Adi Ahuja

Senior Director, Delivery & Advisory

Read Adi’s bio

Luis Nunez

Senior Director, Analysis

Read Luis’s bio

Michelle Ebright, CPA

Director, Finance


Palisade Compliance is the leading independent provider of Oracle software compliance and analysis services.



Offering our services in partnership with other companies, Palisade maximizes benefits to clients by delivering a wider scope of services and solutions.