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  • 04/29/2021 2:37 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Paul Webendorfer, Director of IT, ChangeUp Inc.


    Did you always want to work in IT?

    As far as career paths go, I am still weighing my options. I sincerely hope to make a decision before retirement, but the clock is ticking. Despite the fact that I have been working in IT for nearly 25 years, I had no aspirations of working in IT. I was actually planning for a career in financial law. Somewhere along the way, I took a job with a small local company, started helping with the fledgling IT department and the rest is history. Maybe I didn’t know what I really wanted to do or maybe it was just fate. Either way, I am blessed to have accidentally found a career that has provided me with so many challenges, so many rewards and so many opportunities to work with amazing people.

    What’s the best career advice you ever received?

    Throughout my career, my managers have primarily been on the business side of the organization, rather than the IT side of the organization. I think this factor helped form my “business first” IT philosophy. As a young man, just learning about business technology, enamored by technical bells and whistles, my boss gave me some excellent advice. He told me, “technology doesn’t mean a thing to us, if it doesn’t help the business.” This simple, practical advice set me on the right path of focusing on business solutions and not on the technology itself. To this day, I consider myself a business person working in IT, not an IT person working in business… and that has made a big difference for me.


  • 04/29/2021 2:32 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Staff Writer

    Technology First had an opportunity to sit down, virtually of course, with Vincent Lewis, President of The Hub Powered by PNC, which is an exciting new joint venture here in Dayton. Given the April theme is building an innovation culture within our companies or individual teams, we thought getting a better understanding of this new organization’s mission and leader would be interesting to our 175 member companies.

    With over 95,000 square feet of unique space, The Hub sits in the heart of downtown Dayton and is breathing new life into the city as well as a historic landmark building that was built in 1906 and previously called Dayton Arcade. If you have not seen it yet, there is a great YouTube video called “The Dayton Arcade: Waking the Giant” we would personally recommend watching to get a little better understanding of the space The Hub and its development partners are helping to reclaim.

    The joint venture itself, which is between The Entrepreneurs Center and The University of Dayton, is designed to help drive forward new venture creation and social innovation and will also serve as the centralized location for the region’s entrepreneurs and innovators. An important part of that venture will be the team of organizations behind it which includes not only the University of Dayton, but the L. William Crotty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership program, which will be housed at The Hub, The Greater West Dayton Incubator, numerous Dayton-based startups, and the Entrepreneur Center. This team and the venture are designed to build out a critical and needed focal point of the activity that physically and programmatically will merge two of the region’s primary entrepreneur-oriented organizations. This space will allow the free flow of ideas and help facilitate what they call “serendipitous collisions” among innovative thinkers while offering practical, flexible, and cost-effective space solutions for entrepreneurs.

    At the heart of this effort are Vincent Lewis and a strong team of individuals who will be focused on driving both a cultural as well as a business impact. The Cultural Impact is focused on partnering with the City of Dayton to ensure the resources, talent, and capital available within The Hub can also positively impact the broader Dayton community. The Greater West Dayton Incubator is a good example of one of the partners tasked to ensure pathways are opened to the opportunities in our startup ecosystem for minority and women entrepreneurs in underserved areas.

    No less important will be the business impact The Hub has been tasked to accelerate. Primarily this impact will be focused on the opportunities for innovators and entrepreneurs to launch their ideas, grow their businesses, and drive prosperity within the startup ecosystem. The Entrepreneur Center itself has served as a tremendous advocate and supporter of entrepreneurs in the Miami Valley for years including small businesses, high-tech, and research commercialization-focused startups. Specifically, one of the Entrepreneur Center’s tasks will be continuing to provide support through its mentorship, funding, and marketing programs at The Hub.

    Based on Dayton’s heritage of innovation, strong work ethic, and existing business community, it presents a real possibility to create hundreds of new jobs and ripple across all segments of the business community.

    For more information about ways to engage with The Hub Powered by PNC Bank, visit https://www.thehubdayton.com.

     

     

    In our time with Vincent, we had the opportunity to get to know him and asked him to share some personal things about himself and at the end of the conversation ways the Technology First Membership could collaborate with his team.

    What needs do you believe the Hub addresses in the region?

    The Hub meets many needs, but simply it will serve as a “Melting Pot” of opportunity and hands-on activities for a wide segment of our city, from the students and business owners who will occupy the 95,000 square feet of space to the citizens and investors looking for creative inventors, business owners, and other resources in our region.  This is also a great resource to give students the opportunity to remain in the region after graduation.

    What’s a lesson you can share that's shaped your work?

    Humility and learning you do not have all the answers and are not required to have all the answers to be successful were important lessons.

    What’s a trend in technology or innovation that you think maybe doesn’t get enough attention?

    I believe innovation is an overused word and there is not a straight line between technology and innovation. The Arcade serves as a great example of that. The origin story of the Arcade involves food wagons needing to get out of the rain so they started pulling into the building to better sell their products. It took many years and pivots to come to the current innovation and believe real innovation can take time.

    Do you have a personal favorite place in the region you like to visit? 

    With a smile, “The Arcade”. Vincent has always enjoyed the 360 miles of regional bike trails in the Dayton region and two of his favorite locations are Charleston Falls in Tipp City and Sugarcreek Metropark south of Bellbrook.

    Anything in closing you like to share with the Technology First Membership and overall technology community?  

    I believe the Technology Community is an important piece of critical infrastructure to any region and it’s extremely important that we continue to grow it here in Dayton. Having technology-focused companies such as DataYard support our launch is only one example of how we can continue to collaborate.

    Professional background

    A Western Kentucky graduate, Vincent went on to get his Master’s degree at Antioch University. After graduation, he went on to become the CEO of Hyde Park Electronics, a family-owned business at the time that would go on to become the #1 provider in the world (in front of companies such as Siemens) as a high-tech provider of ultra-sonic sensors technology. Over his 11 year career, he would lead the company on to eventually be sold to Schneider Electric. He would continue until leaving the company in 2007. He then went on to own Logos@Work,  with his wife for fourteen years, where he continues as chairman today. Finally, in 2014 he followed his love of teaching to his current role at The University of Dayton.


  • 04/29/2021 2:21 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Jon Rike, CIO, City of Dayton


    What was your first Job?  

    My first job after graduating from college was providing IT support for executive leadership at the University of Dayton.  Looking back, I now realize how privileged I was to have access and exposure to phenomenal leaders like Brother Ray Fitz, Father Gene Contadino, Dr. Katy Marre, and Jaci Jackson.   As I've grown in my career, I've more fully realized that my leadership style and approach to management was fundamentally shaped by these interactions and the lessons I learned from great leaders.  Throughout my career I've done my best to "pay it forward" by modeling their approach and continually looking for opportunities to provide servant leadership.  

    What has been your greatest career achievement?

    Significant achievements in IT are typically associated with initiatives or projects that produce a fundamental impact at the enterprise level.  In my career I've been blessed to have led or contributed to many technology projects that have raised the bar and provided compelling benefits for the organization.  However, when I think of my greatest achievement I always come back to the team and the people.  As leaders we have an amazing opportunity to fundamentally change the trajectory of careers and lives.  My greatest achievement will always be associated with the investments I've made in my staff and the exponential growth that has followed!

    What's the best career advice you've ever received?

    One of the best pieces of career advice that I've ever received was provided in a quote by Harry Truman.  He famously said that "not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers".  This advice has really served me well in the area of information technology.  I truly believe that to successfully lead in this industry, you have to have an endless appetite for reading, learning, and growing.  Additionally, the pace of change within IT has accelerated to such a degree that any lapse in learning will quickly become a competitive disadvantage for the individual, the team, and the organization.  Thanks for the great advice President Truman!

    What advice would you give aspiring IT leaders?

    Enjoy the process of becoming! I think in life we often try to speed the process of reaching a given objective without fully embracing or appreciating the journey.  As Kobe Bryant said, "Those times when you get up early... those times when you stay up late... when you're too tired... you don't want to push yourself, but you do it anyway.   That is actually the dream."  Enjoy the ride, be a voracious reader, learn from your mistakes, and always put relationships first!


  • 04/20/2021 4:18 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    High School Tech Internship Pilot Program - Ohio Businesses.pdf

    The High School Tech Internship pilot program is an opportunity for Ohio employers to hire high school interns and receive reimbursement for their wages.

    The High School Tech Internship Pilot Program will connect 100 Ohio high school students with technology careers and businesses in Ohio. Businesses can hire summer interns by contacting one of 12 pilot sites across the state. Visit Workforce.Ohio.gov/HSTechInternship to learn how to participate in the program. Interns should be placed in technology roles that focus on software, data, cloud and IT infrastructure, and cybersecurity. Students will be expected to perform job duties similar to what would be expected in an entry-level position.

    Wage Reimbursement: 

    To qualify for wage reimbursement, employers must submit documentation proving that the individual was employed for a minimum of 150 hours and was paid at least $12 per hour. Employers will receive a higher wage reimbursement for younger students to help more students experience technology careers at an earlier age.

    Questions? Please contact the High School Tech Internship team via email: High_School_Tech_Internship@Development.Ohio.gov


  • 04/13/2021 9:12 AM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)


    Advanced Technology Consulting (ATC) has rolled out a refreshed logo, branding, and website to reflect ATC’s position more accurately in the digital transformation marketplace. In addition, ATC recently signed a lease for ~7,000 square feet of Class A office space on the fourth floor of Liberty Center, a mixed-use community in Liberty Township, just north of Cincinnati.

    ATC is an independent IT consulting firm specializing in digital transformation in four core areas: voice, network, cloud and cybersecurity.

    ATC will officially move into the new space this August. The need for new space has been fueled by ATC’s growth—eight consecutive record years—and demand for additional talent. ATC recently added three IT consultants and has tripled its Cincinnati workforce in a little over two years. Aggressive plans to onboard additional IT talent are part of ATC’s growth strategy.

    “With our growing team, we need a space that will fully engage our employees, clients, and partners on multiple fronts,” says David Goodwin, ATC Managing Partner & Co-Founder. “Liberty Center and our new office space will do just that. We’re eager to embrace this new brand and move to Liberty Center. Our new location on the I-75 corridor will allow us to further develop our regional presence.”

    ATC’s new logo and brand colors are refreshed but not altogether new. What remains as part of the new brand identity is the triangle, the blue and gray colors, and “ATC” spelled out in all caps. What is new is the aqua color and the 3D-like, technology-forward favicon. Phase one of ATC’s new website is up and running, with phase two slated for release in May.

    ATC’s new brand will be reflected within the new space, and ATC is currently working through an experiential design process that will exhibit ATC’s technology-forward brand characteristics. As conceived, the office will be a hub for collaboration where talent, technology, and expertise unite. Naturally, the space will utilize and showcase the technologies ATC evangelizes every day with clients.

    “It’s an exciting time for us,” says Louie Hollmeyer, ATC director of marketing and consultant. “Our work with clients has been wrapped around digital transformation for some time now, and it was essential for us to create a refreshed brand identity to better align with today and tomorrow.”

    By joining the Liberty Center community, Cincinnati’s hottest suburban hub, ATC will have access to unmatched amenities and finishes. The center offers immersive experience of endless dining and retail options, multifamily housing, onsite parking and community events. ATC’s new office also has excellent drive-by visibility and convenient access to both the Cincinnati and Dayton metropolitan areas, including Northern Kentucky.

    To learn more, visit ATC here and here.


  • 04/06/2021 12:31 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Sinclair College Announcement

    Who doesn’t want to qualify for free training funds? Right now is a great time to increase your current employees technical skills. The department of Workforce Development at Sinclair College has several programs eligible for state funding with Ohio TechCred.  We anticipated it opening again in March, however, they made some changes to the program and it reopened 1 April.

    TechCred is Ohio's innovative workforce program that reimburses employers for industry-recognized, technology-focused, credentialed training programs and certificates. The training must be completed within 12 months now and the current online application period is open as of April 1st. Now is the time to start thinking of who needs upskilled!

    Here are some things you should know, including changes from previous funding rounds: 

    1.       Employers will identify the specific, technology-centric qualifications they need, as well as the employee(s) they want to upskill. 

    2.       To qualify for reimbursement of training costs, the employer must partner with a training provider and apply online. Individuals must be Ohio residents with a verifiable Ohio address. 

    3.       The length of the grant will be reduced from 18 months to 12 months from the award date.

    4.       Training programs must start on or after the date of the award, not before, and must be completed in less than 12 months.

    5.       The state will reimburse up to $2,000 of training costs per credential upon completion. There is no longer a limit of one reimbursement available per employee in each funding round. 

    6.       Employers are eligible to receive up to $30,000 per funding round. 

    7.       The application period begins April 1st and will end on April 30th 

    8.       Click here for more information about the TechCred program. 

    Wondering what you could use it for? Many companies in the area have already used it to streamline workflow and improve productivity with Microsoft Office training. Learn to effectively manage projects, analyze data or build PivotTables with Microsoft Office training. With courses for beginners to power users, you can gain the skills you need to master the features and functions of the Microsoft Office suite.

    Eligible Industry Areas 

    1. Business Technology (think Adobe Creative Suite or Photoshop for your marketing) 
    2. Construction Technology 
    3. Healthcare Technology 
    4. Information Technology (think Microsoft, Excel or Word)
    5. IoT & Cybersecurity Technology 
    6. Manufacturing Technology (think SkillsTrac Industrial Maintenance, CNC Machining or GD&T)
    7. Military & Smart Transportation (automotive training, such as diesel maintenance)
    8. Robotics/Automation (think electrical troubleshooting or robotic programming)

    Please contact Karolyn Ellingson if you have any questions.

    Karolyn Ellingson, M.Ed.

    Workforce Development Manager
    Sinclair Community College | 5380 Courseview Dr | Mason, OH 45040
    O: 937.512.5584 | M:937.416.6556| F: 937.512.5591

    karolyn.ellingson@sinclair.edu

    workforce.sinclair.edu


  • 03/01/2021 4:27 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Lisa HecklerVP Information Security & Privacy, CareSource and Technology First Board of Directors

    Is your life feeling a bit like Groundhog's Day? Needing something to snap you out of the Winter Blues? Look no further than Technology First for exciting volunteer, network and educational opportunities in the Dayton and Southwest Ohio region… and virtually beyond! Here's a peek into what's coming up related to my favorite topic - cybersecurity:

    Girl Scouts Cyber Challenge - Calling All Cybersecurity Professionals

    What??? The Moon has been hacked?! Girls in grades 6 - 12 will come to the rescue of the Moon Base as part of the 2021 Girl Scouts Cyber Challenge. This all day event will immerse attendees in the world of cybersecurity. Along the way they will solve interesting problems (no experience necessary) and meet real world cybersecurity professionals.

    Will you join me in creating an exciting experience for our young women who are interested in cybersecurity? The event will take place at the end of July (day to be finalized) and we need day-of volunteers to make it happen.

    Cyber SIG - Calling All Cyber Security Professionals… AGAIN!

    Technology First is starting a new special interested group focused on Cybersecurity. The group will meet quarterly starting with the virtual OISC (see below for more info on the OISC). Our next meeting will be on June 3 featuring local cybersecurity expert Bryan Fite. If you've met Bryan you know that this is sure to be an interesting evening filled with information on Bryan's latest research as well as lots of conversation on the latest threats and trends in cybersecurity. Technology First will be sending out more information as we get closer to the event.

    If you have questions or would like to submit a topic or speaker for consideration for a future event, please email kregan@technologyfirst.org.  

    Ohio Information Security Conference (OISC) - Last Call for Cybersecurity Professionals!

    (And anyone interested in learning more about Cybersecurity)

    We have another interesting and informative OISC on tap for 2021 including keynote speaker Duane Harrison, Chief Scientist, National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC), Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. NASIC is the Air Force analysis center for foreign air, space and specialized intelligence. As Chief Scientist, Mr. Harrison guides the 4,100-person center’s analytic production mission, ensuring timely delivery of relevant intelligence data products and services to Air Force and joint operational warfighters, acquisition and force modernization communities, and senior defense and intelligence community policymaking customers.

    Additionally, there are four tracks featuring cybersecurity practitioners sharing real life experiences, practical guidance, and thought leadership, as well as technology vendors sharing the latest tips, tricks and tools to address our cybersecurity concerns. The tracks are focused Cybersecurity Trends & Directions, Applied Cybersecurity, Cyber R&D, and Roundtable Discussions.

    Please join me at the all virtual OISC on Wednesday, March 10! Registration & Details Here!


  • 03/01/2021 4:22 PM | Kaitlin Quellhorst (Administrator)

    Shawn Waldman, CEO, Secure Cyber Defense

    When it comes to cyber threats, every second counts. Quickly identifying a security breach or cyber threat minimizes the damage and cost to an organization. Unfortunately, the volume of threat alerts an organization receives every day, from multiple security systems, creates an overload of tickets needing to be analyzed, prioritized, and investigated.

    Hackers are now using artificial intelligence to make their own criminal activities more efficient. If cybercriminals are using automation technologies, it makes sense that cybersecurity professionals do the same to stay one step ahead.

    Heightened productivity, consistency, and keeping up with increasingly complex security needs are all solid advantages for adopting automation. With automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI), repetitive tasks like manually sifting through threat alerts can be handled quickly and efficiently. Automation technologies also use vast amounts of threat intelligence to quickly identify and address emerging threats—specifically sophisticated threats designed to avoid detection. Through the use of playbooks, systems can quickly and efficiently eliminate risk. This quick response reduces Mean Time To Detection (MTTD) and Mean Time To Response (MTTR) saving companies time, expense, and downtime.

    There are five ways artificial intelligence and automation fill a need for data security teams:

    1. Machine learning-powered security can quickly spot and automatically address sophisticated new threats
    2. Automated tools can uncover and fix vulnerabilities before attackers can exploit them
    3. Tasks can be automated to extend the capabilities of security teams and reduce alert fatigue
    4. Automation handles threat analysis and response in a matter of seconds, 24/7
    5. As part of a larger security solution, automated platforms work together in a coordinated response

    WHY ISN’T EVERYONE RELYING ON THESE TOOLS?

    If AI-powered automation tools are providing more accurate and timely results than humans, why isn’t everyone using them? For one, automation tools are behavior-based, meaning they need data to inform their learning and actions. Cost can also be a factor since these platforms require expertise to configure and manage, often requiring outside Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) support. Finally, automation needs to be part of an overall cybersecurity plan, rather than simply patching a hole.

    First and foremost, organizations need to be sure they have the basic security measures in place, like adhering to the CIS Top 20 Controls to stop the most pervasive and dangerous cyber threats. Having the basics in place before jumping into AI- and machine-learning platforms is the best place to start. Some of the basic elements include:

    • Understanding your network and the devices on your network
    • Addressing perimeters such as firewalls, intrusion prevention systems, and encryption
    • Secure network coverage such as SIEM, SD-Wan, and VPNs
    • End-point protection such as antivirus and anti-malware
    • Good email security and hygiene
    • Controlling the use of admin privileges
    • Proper password management
    • Ensuring firewalls, email gateways, and other security devices are properly configured
    • Resources behind the scenes to satisfy training needs, create awareness, and develop a positive cybersecurity culture

    Automation isn’t replacing security teams, rather automation enhances the skills and capabilities available. Minimizing human errors in repetitive cybersecurity tasks is a benefit of automation. Automation provides consistency reducing error rates and increasing protections. A higher level of detection and speed of response means there is a quicker link between suspicious behavior and action. Over time, as AI-powered platforms continue to learn your network environment and ingest threat intelligence data, their benefits to your organization will continue to improve.

    Automation can be rapid, agile, and consistent. What automation can’t be is creative and curious. When security processes are automated, security teams are freed up to exercise their creativity to solve problems and build more comprehensive security approaches. Cybersecurity professionals still need to decide what servers or networks to isolate, when incident response teams need to be brought in, plus determine what changes should be made to policies and procedures to institute corrective actions.  Like everything else in the IT stack, it comes down to needs, workload, and budget to determine how much automation will deliver a return on your investment.

    So, What’s the Answer?

    The reality is that the complexity of technology and the amount of data that must be watched and analyzed is not slowing down. In order to manage the growing threat surface and threat alerts, security automation and integration tools will continue to evolve with the same urgency to support security teams. Is your company prepared to take advantage of automation? If not, how will you develop strategies to keep up with the speed and sophistication of cyber threats?

    Shawn Waldman

    Is the CEO and Founder of Miamisburg-based Secure Cyber Defense. With over 20 years of experience in cybersecurity and information systems, his team designs, manages, and monitors cybersecurity solutions, responding to threats and protecting organizations from cybercriminals.


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