Education: Bachelor's degree from New Mexico Tech, master's degree from Troy State University
Professional Credentials/Accreditations: Licensed Private Investigator in the State of Texas
Achievements/Awards: Management Development Program completion (2002), U.S. Army Operation Noble Eagle (2002), GS Yuasa Certificate of Excellence (2011), Physical Sciences Laboratory Certificate of Excellent (2004), Sandia National Labs Service Award (2010)
What led you to a career in technology?
I always had an interest in science and technology, particularly the fast-moving field of digital sciences and computing.
What motivates you to go above and beyond in your current position?
The adversary is always evolving, and it’s paramount that the U.S. critical infrastructure stay secure so that our citizens remain safe and our way of life is stable.
What role does sustainability play in your life both personally and professionally?
Technology plays a huge role in creating sustainable solutions. It’s important that we are always looking forward and being creative in the use of technology to pave the way for future generations.
What is the most fascinating lesson you have learned while working with technology?
There is always a new and unique problem to be solved. Technology evolves rapidly; no two days are alike.
What is unique about you personally?
I have a number of diverse interests that I’ve been able to merge into a career.
What is unique about you professionally?
Although I have a diverse background, military systems background that migrated to energy, then into security and investigations, and eventually entrepreneurialism, the basic threads of security have remained a constant theme.
What is your most admirable quality?
I’ve been told honesty and integrity, which is required to handle the most sensitive information for our customers and colleagues.
Why are diversity, equality, and inclusion necessary for this industry?
We need the best, brightest minds in this industry that is evolving at a rapid pace. We need creative problem-solvers. Without diversity and inclusion, we’ll never reach the people we need to keep up the pace and find the best technology solutions. It takes a village!
What aspect of the industry has the most potential for growth, and how can we accelerate that?
I may have a biased view, but cybersecurity is growing exponentially. With that, smart networking technology, virtualization, and IoT are areas of rapid growth.
Where does the industry need the most improvement, and what can we learn from the current shortcomings?
We have a workforce shortage, and within energy it may be because many assume the technology is old or boring. We need to do our best to reach young, bright minds and convey the endless possibilities for interesting projects and career growth in this industry.
When you imagine the future of technology, what does it look like?
Very autonomous and automated … I think we’ll move away from humans making decisions and more distributed and powerful assets controlling our daily lives.
What advice do you have for women and other minorities who are currently working in the industry but don’t necessarily feel like they belong?
Do it. When I got started in this field, there were very few women. In general, that was never an obstacle. Let your knowledge, motivation, and skill set drive your career. Your work will speak for itself, and your expertise will become the characteristics that others speak the most about you.
What advice do you have for young girls who may be interested in a future career in technology?
This field is never dull. If you want a constant flow of challenging and interesting projects, you’d like to see your work evolve into a solution, and you want excellent job security, then jump into technology.