I am a computer programmer. That's how I started my career anyway. After a stint in the US Air Force in Montgomery Alabama, where I learned my trade and completed my Bachelor’s degree, I spent some time as a consultant with Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC). The coolest gig I had at CSC was building theater-level war games at the Air Force Wargaming Institute. Back in those days, I was coding in COBOL, or Fortran, or C++. Pretty old school, I know. Thinking that I needed some more general business knowledge, I earned my MBA while working at CSC.
From there, I moved on to a division of Siemens in a suburb of Atlanta where I led a team of programmers building a sales force automation tool. That was back before it was called CRM. While at Siemens, I was approached by a former employee about a senior architect job at a “dot com.” Back, then “dot coms” were all the rage so that I couldn’t resist. After a year at that company, I became the head of the IT department. That company was acquired by one company and then another, etc, until it finally came to be part of LexisNexis. Since we were engaged in e-commerce, we found ourselves having to be compliant with this new (at the time) standard called the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI for short). And since all of my folks were otherwise engaged in higher priority work, I decided to take on the PCI compliance tasks.
I had infosec responsibilities at various points in my career with the Air Force and CSC, but I realized my knowledge was limited. To correct that, I began studying information security, eventually earning a CISSP and a few years later a CEH (Certified Ethical Hacker). Seeing the need for a more common-sense, business-friendly approach to security, I started my own consulting company. That lead to my technology executive role at IDology and ultimately to a leadership position at my current company. I am also currently a student a Georgia Tech pursuing a Master's Degree in Cybersecurity.
So I'm back in the consulting business again and I'm back in school again. And if you are wondering how I got from Georgia to Oregon, that's a story for another day.