I was born/grew up in: I was born in Vancouver, B.C. but grew up in Port Coquitlam, B.C.
I now live in: Port Coquitlam, B.C.
I completed my training/education at: I completed a BSc in Computing Science at Simon Fraser University.
What I do at work
As the co-owner of my own business, I consider my role to be that of the “chief relationship officer” of our business. Our business, Cyber.sc, provides cyber risk assessment, cyber security and solutions to small and medium sized businesses. I spend much of my day making connections with existing and potential clients. We are a small business so I get to wear many hats. In addition to relationship building, I’m also involved in marketing our services and developing proposals to other businesses for how we can help them with their cyber security needs.
My career path is
By the time I was in late high school, I knew I wanted to work with computers. My dad was a high school computers teacher so I guess that had an influence. Late in grade 12, I stumbled across magazine on information security. I read it cover to cover and I was hooked! I decided then that this was the field for me. I still have that magazine somewhere.
My career path has changed from what I had thought it would be. My original plan was to work in the corporate world and “climb the corporate ladder”. I focused on this at first. I started in entry-level positions, learned more and developed my skills. Over the years, I moved to more advanced positions in different sectors (e.g., financial services, transportation, government, and telecommunications). In each position, my skills and knowledge grew. I was at the pinnacle of my career but I felt unfulfilled; I was unhappy. As a result, I left a job with a guaranteed pay cheque and started my own business. I really had no experience with starting a business but I learned as I when along. I certainly was not expecting to own my own business when I started out! Check my LinkedIn profile for more information.
I am motivated by
Relationship building is my jam! I love doing this every day. I try to connect with one new person each day either in person or through social media such as LinkedIn. I like to engage with them and have meaningful conversations. During the 2020 pandemic, I have built many great relationships and found new partners or clients. I love helping people!
How I affect people’s lives
I find it very fulfilling when I am able to provide practical guidance and advice to a small or mid-sized business this is struggling with cyber risk. By using our services, they don’t need to have a fulltime person on staff. By helping them maintain the security of their webpage, servers and computers, we are helping them build their business. When I see our clients grow and thrive without having to worry about cyber risk it is fulfilling. When the CEO of a company tells me, they are comfortable and not worried about risk so they can grow their business that is a great feeling!
Outside of work I
Outside of work, I focus all my energy on my family. I love spending time with my children and wife. They are everything to me!
My advice to others
If you are interested in cybersecurity (or any career related to computers), it is important to develop your technical skills. Don’t shy away because you think it might be beyond your ability. There are many different careers available in this field. Some require advanced technical skills while others may not. Having good foundation skills in communication, writing, teamwork, problem solving, etc. is always a benefit. This field has great job security. I’m a big supporter of increasing diversity in this industry (gender diversity, ethnic diversity, thought diversity). It is a good thing for this industry to have people who are not coming from an “IT route”.