Hispanic Heroes: Innovators in Information Technology

by Modis on September 15, 2017

In any tech-driven industry that thrives on new ideas and finding fresh approaches to tackle ever-evolving challenges, diversity is a vital component for building forward momentum towards future progress. Many of today’s technology leaders hail from different cultural backgrounds, bringing a richness of perspective to the companies they create and work with.

As the workforce population continues to change and expand, it’s becoming increasingly important to have a greater diversity of voices playing key roles in shaping the fast-paced technology sector. In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we want to recognize three innovative leaders from the Hispanic community who are making a big difference in the IT industry, while helping to make the tech sector a more diverse, welcoming place for everyone.

1) Myrna Soto – Senior Vice President & Global Chief Information Security Office, Comcast Corporation

With a wealth of cybersecurity expertise spanning 25 years of experience in a broad range of industries, Myrna Soto oversees the efficiency, alignment and security of information systems across all of Comcast and its business properties. Earlier this year, Soto was named among Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Latinas, and as a strong woman leader and a minority, she’s an engaged and active mentor to many in the company. In addition to serving on several high-profile boards and technology initiatives, Soto is heavily involved with Comcast’s Hispanic Employee Affinity Group, “Unidos,” which strives to attract and foster Hispanic employees within the company.

2) Guillermo Diaz, Jr – Chief Information Officer & Senior Vice President, Information Technology, Cisco

The motivation for success and a drive for continual improvement has served Guillermo Diaz, Jr. well–both in life and in his role spearheading the development of top information technology initiatives and services throughout Cisco. Discovering an interest in telecommunications while in the Navy, Diaz pushed hard to forge a path upwards in the IT industry. All the while, he’s been fervently dedicated to helping others achieve their own success.

Outside of his own career, Diaz has a passion for fostering and encouraging younger generations of Hispanics to pursue careers in science, engineering and technology. His mentoring activities include working with middle-school students, and he’s also a leader on Cisco’s Diversity Council and executive sponsor of the company’s Hispanic and Latino employee resource network.

3) Maria Martinez – President, Global Customer Success & Salesforce Latin America, Salesforce

For Maria Martinez, strong leadership and a desire to help others have been driving forces behind her success fostering rapid growth and expansion at one one of the nation’s top customer relationship management software companies. Applying many of the valuable lessons she learned during years working in tech at Microsoft and Motorola to her more recent role at Salesforce, she has honed the art of crafting customer success through dedication and a passion for tackling challenges head-on.

In 2016, Martinez was awarded the Hispanic IT Executive Council’s Estrella Award for her contributions to the IT industry and her mentoring work helping under-represented groups excel in IT-related fields.

There may still be long ways to go, but diversity in the IT industry is on the rise, thanks to the hard work of tech community leaders and companies who see the benefit in broadening perspectives in the workforce. Do you have any personal Hispanic role models in the IT and engineering world you’d like to honor this month?

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