Giving Thanks During the Flurry of End-of-Year “To Dos”

It’s all too easy at this time of year to feel completely overwhelmed. As the end of the year approaches and the cold weather rolls in, everyone has a lot on their plate – from closing out the quarter, and sometimes the fiscal year, to all the things going on at home.Snowflake_1_HiRes[1].jpg

Before we flip the calendar to 2015, let’s take a moment to stop, look around, and realize all that we have to be grateful for. While we often have that moment of thanks and reflection in our personal lives just before the turkey is carved and the gifts are passed around, I think it’s just as important to take a moment for thanks and reflection at work.

This was the spirit of the conversation I had with several NetApp employees. Many of them have shared their success stories throughout the year on GovDataDownlaod, so I reached out to find out what, specifically, they are thankful for as we enter the holiday season.

I talked with Mark Conway, Senior Program Lead for Academic Alliances, who always shares his appreciation for U.S. military personnel with us. He has explained how NetApp chose to sign onto the White House’s Joining Forces program as recognition of the abundance of skills that service personnel bring to the private sector when they leave the service. Joining Forces ensures that military personnel have access to training and job resources to build successful careers after their military service is completed. Conway said he is particularly thankful for U.S. Military personnel, many of whom do not have the opportunity to be with friends and family so that we are able to enjoy holidays with ours.

Dr. Greg Gardner, NetApp’s chief architect for government, defense, and Intel solutions for the U.S. Public Sector, frequently shares his thoughts on big data and how it affects government agencies. This holiday season, Gardner is particularly thankful for innovative technologies, such as the cloud, that are constantly evolving and changing how agencies and organizations achieve mission success. From the Distributed Common Ground System – Army (DCGS-A) to the cloud, and storage apps, technology can solve challenges for the Department of Defense (DoD) and many of his other customers.

Lee Vorthman, NetApp’s chief security architect, cited customers and partners, all of whom, he says, truly are an extension of the NetApp team. Working with partners, such as Cisco, VMware and Microsoft, Vorthman and his team are able to create solutions for cyber security and analytics for agencies big and small.GovDataDL-22-300x90.jpg

For myself, I am thankful to be able to work with a team that includes people like Mark, Greg and Lee and many others who make NetApp one of the world’s best places to work.

In the month of December, head on over at GovDataDownload, to look back on 2014 and hear more from these experts on the biggest trends in the public sector.


Patrick Burns, Director of Marketing, NetApp U.S. Public Sector