A Day in the Life with a Sr. Account Management Specialist

CIS® is home to the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center® (MS-ISAC®). It’s the go-to resource for cyber threat prevention, protection, response, and recovery for U.S. State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial (SLTT) government entities. Eugene is a part of the Stakeholder Engagement team. They work diligently to help secure our nation’s SLTT government entities. They build relationships, educate members, and travel the country helping entities improve their cybersecurity posture.

stakeholder-engagementPlease share a brief overview of what you do as a Sr. Account Management Specialist.

I work closely with our MS-ISAC and EI-ISAC members across the Northeast (long story but that includes out to North Dakota and down to Virgina) to get them access to our services and to assist them in any way they need. Additionally, I co-chair the MS-ISAC’s Cybersecurity Education and Awareness Workgroup, which pulls together MS-ISAC members to create and collect materials on educating end users and staff on cybersecurity. I also spend a great deal of my time on the road spreading the word about the ISACs to prospective members and building partnerships. In fact, as I write this I have just gotten home from Hershey, PA where I presented to public school districts.

How long have you worked at CIS/MS-ISAC?

I have been with CIS for just shy of three years now, and my big anniversary for that milestone will be coming up April 4th!

What education/background do you have that helped you get your position at CIS?

My education was in International Relations, with a focus on national security. I moved from working for a Middle East peace-focused non-profit to managing university fundraising programs and wanted to get a bit closer to that government and national security focus when I heard about the MS-ISAC and it’s mission to better secure our nation’s SLTT governments. I believe my strong background in working with donors, volunteers, and community members on fundraising projects prepared me well for directly working with our organization’s members and constituents.

What are 5 daily tasks you do as a Sr. Account Management Specialist?

  • Answer member questions about our services as they come in
  • Work with partners at associations of governments and regional groups to get speaking engagements at conferences
  • Create and customize presentations for conferences to spread the word about what we do
  • Train and mentor new teammates
  • Work on longer-term projects, usually the Cybersecurity Awareness Month Toolkit and other deliverables driven by the Education and Awareness Workgroup.

What is your favorite part about being a Sr. Account Management Specialist?

I really enjoy speaking at conferences and building strategic relationships with our members and the associations they belong to. Our members tend to always have the drive to learn more and do better when it comes to cybersecurity, and it is always such a pleasure to work with them directly.

What advice would you give a prospective Sr. Account Management Specialist?

Build strong relationships with your members. We’re a mission-driven non-profit, and supporting them is our mission!

If you could describe your job in 3 words, what would they be?

Collaboration. Communication. Support.

What is a skill or habit that has helped you in your current role?

I have a lot of experience in improvisational comedy and theater. This has greatly helped me with my task of presenting about CIS, the MS-ISAC and our mission to our constituents. That allowed me to take on an outreach role more comfortably, and lets me focus on honing my material rather than fighting stage fright!

What has surprised you about this position?

When I first walked in to start on our team, I did not think that so many MS-ISAC members would have as big of a hand in creating materials and volunteering time to assist with our mission. I was very wrong. In co-chairing one of our workgroups, I have seen firsthand how much time our members volunteer and how much effort they put in. Between all the workgroups, the executive committee, and all the other ways they contribute to the cause, they are a great driver of our community.

How would you describe the company culture?

I would say we are intensely mission-driven and focused on developing stronger employees. I have never worked with an organization that provided so many great professional development resources and allowed for so much personal growth. Between Dale Carnegie courses, SANS courses, and lunch and learn sessions, there is so much available for bettering oneself. CIS invests in their people to invest in the mission, and I believe it has resulted in steady dividends of success with our endeavors.