What do you do?
I lead a large technical organization with people leaders who report directly to me, and indirect reports (people who report to them), who are responsible for delivering analytics, infrastructure, product and applications for thousands of vendors and clients.
Why did you choose this field?
My Mom worked in engineering and was always showing me new things: from technology, systems, and programming languages to taking me to work, from a very early age. Because I had such a solid background in technology (all types), I elected to study something completely different in college: English Literature! I have never regretted it - except on those few occasions when a technical or engineering position has hard requirements for a technical degree. I specifically chose IT after working for a company in Silicon Valley, right after college. I was actually managing their internal public relations, and was wearing multiple hats - including a technical one (because I already had that background). Anyway, it was a natural "slide" into formal IT.
What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?
Building and launching new digital products around the world, and to consumers and businesses. Millions and millions of them. What I love most is product development - actually building products from the ground-up. I particularly like digital healthcare and developing solutions to help people live a better life. This technology didn't exist when I was younger. What I think is important to know is that the world is always changing; just when you think you and it are done, you will be gifted an opportunity to change, to evolve and to do something new. Take it.
Why do you love working in STEM?
I like solving problems; ensuring people have access to healthcare; and to whatever extent possible, alleviating human suffering. I love digital technologies and thinking of new ways to leverage technology to solve human problems.
Best advice for next generation?
Start your own business. Set your own rules. Know your value (both personally and on the market) and be compensated accordingly. If something new is interesting, find out about it. Lean into your strengths. If you love it, it will love you back. Be courageous and seek the highest ground when people try to pull you down. It's your life, you own it. The world needs what you have to offer.
Inspo quote / fun fact / role model
We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams.