What made you realize you wanted to pursue a career in technology?
Chuckle … well, I never really set out for a career in technology. But, that is not unusual for people in the mission critical industry. I originally moved to New York City from Texas as an economic and finance major with a brokerage firm, and on Wall Street, when they spoke, people listened. It was an internal transfer and a great opportunity that I could not pass up. Due to a series of events too long to go into, I found myself on the 72ⁿᵈ floor of 2 World Trade Center, working for a newly formed AT&T Information Systems branch that primarily focused on the financial industry. It was my first introduction to technology and high finance with demanding Wall Street clients. I never looked back, and I would not change a thing.
What three adjectives would you use to describe your journey in the industry so far?
Exciting, challenging, and incredible.
What is your personal mantra?
“Ancora Imparo” — Still, I am learning, accredited to Michelangelo at the age of 87. There is always something new to learn. I like to consider myself a lifelong student.
Describe the highest point in your career so far and how you got there, including all the hurdles you had to jump (and the ones you tripped over too).
That is a great question. There have been many “high points” in my career, but as I reflect on this question, there is no doubt I am exactly where I need to be and could not be happier.
I loved my time in “the field” as an IBEW Local 3 project manager in New York City. It was an incredible learning experience that no university curriculum teaches. Believe me, there were many lessons learned with every project. As a senior project engineer, I was asked by senior management to put together a ”hands-on” copper fiber standards program for some senior electricians in our shop. Talk about my Rodney Dangerfield moments, getting “no respect” and “heckled” by some of our seasoned union electricians. These were men that taught me so much on my projects (which they reminded me of during training), but, when it was all over, I walked away from that class realizing I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was great sharing all of this information with these journeymen — discussing pros and cons from their perspective of implementation and discussing the standards that guide us to solutions. It was at that point I was bitten by the training bug.
Many years later, CNet Training’s president and CEO, Andrew Stevens, saw my passion for what I do made me an offer I could not refuse. CNet Training has allowed me to channel this passion for learning and teaching and share it with each class. I hope to make each program a great experience for the global professionals who come to our programs, hoping to send them off not only with useful information but also with a hunger or thirst for more continued learning in this fast-paced, uncharted industry.
What is your most admirable quality?
I am the “glass half full” optimist, living life with a grateful and positive heart. But, even though I hope for the best, I do plan for the worst, identify risks, and adjust my plan accordingly. And then I continue to hope for the best.