After spending 18 years in telecommunications with AT&T, Lucent, and AVAYA, Warren became obsessed with data centers and dedicated himself to becoming an active contributor to the mission critical industry ultimately carrying the message of the tremendous opportunities available for young people, women, veterans, and people of every background forward via the Education, AIMS Mentoring Program, and Women in Mission Critical Operations (WiMCO) initiatives established by 7×24 Exchange International.
In what is arguably the largest and most significant industry that the world has ever known, Warren thrives on collaboration, creativity and collective process, “Why am I so passionate and excited about the data center and mission critical industries? There has never been such a dynamic industry, filled with as many incredibly brilliant and driven people, that has had as significant an impact on our world as the Mission Critical/Data Center Industry…EVER!”
Why 7×24 Exchange?
“Go to: https://www.7x24exchange.org/about-7×24/ and every reason why I am active and hold a chapter board position on 7×24 Exchange is in that paragraph. We are a non-profit diverse group of mission critical industry professionals focused on education, collaboration, information exchange, and giving back through social responsibility. Additionally, there is no social hierarchy. Though some members may be more experienced than others, no individual is ‘better’ than another. We meet as peers respecting each other as industry professionals, knowledgeable in our fields of expertise.”
Establishing a 7×24 Exchange Satellite Chapter Club – Cal Poly
In 2015 members of the 7×24 Exchange Nor Cal Chapter, 7×24 Exchange International and Facebook met with Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, to discuss the possibility of bringing the opportunities available within the mission critical industry to the students at Cal Poly. It was then that the 7×24 Exchange education initiative at Cal Poly was born. Shortly after, Rich Garrison, 7×24 Exchange Nor Cal President, approached me to work with him to establish an official, chartered “Mission Critical Club” at Cal Poly. I could not say, “YES!” fast enough!
Our first engagement with the students and faculty was a sponsored trip for them to visit Vantage Data Centers in San Jose, CA. When we kicked off the meeting, we learned that not one of the students or faculty members knew what a data center was! We had our work cut out for us! We spent half the day presenting a “Data Center 101” class and the second half of the day touring the Vantage campus. My favorite part of the day was watching the expressions of awe on the faces of the students once the scale of the facility sank in and then the deeper look of amazement when I said, “…Yea, and this isn’t even a big one!”
Still going strong today, the Cal Poly 7×24 Exchange Student Chapter Club has had club meetings sponsored by Alfa-Tech, Belden, Cisco, Facebook, Google, and a host of others. Students have benefited through education and exposure to the mission critical industry and even been awarded internships, some of which have evolved into actual job opportunities. The mission critical industry has benefited as well as we expose more young minds to our industry and provide opportunities for them to take us into a new era of industry transformation.
Working with my chapter to create and establish the Cal Poly 7×24 Exchange Student Chapter Club has easily been one of the most challenging and yet rewarding undertakings that I have ever accepted and I look forward to further expanding our education initiative within other institutions of learning.
When a young person shakes your hand and says, “I wouldn’t have this opportunity if I didn’t know about 7×24 Exchange and the Mission Critical Industry. You changed my life – Thanks!”…well…it doesn’t get much better than that!