Careers: Interviews
Donald Bechman: 2007 Network Professional Association Award for Professionalism Winner as the Top of the Mark Volunteer Award

Steve Delahunty has an exclusive interview with Donald Bechman.

Donald Bechman is the recipient of the 2007 Network Professional Association Award for Professionalism Winner as the Top of the Mark Volunteer Award. Donald's leadership efforts in community support while managing an information technology career were noted as exemplary evidence of his volunteer contributions. Donald shows compassion, dedication, and consistency thru his volunteer work on his local rescue squad. He holds certifications in Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Pediatric Advanced Life Support which allow him to treat a wide variety of medical issues for both children and adults. Donald is an Associate with Booz Allen Hamilton, a global strategy and technology consulting firm.

DISCUSSION:

Opening Comment: The NPA Board offers our congratulations on your outstanding achievement in winning the Top of the Mark Volunteer Award. Your involvement in your community and balance of an IT career has been challenging but appears to be rewarding. How does it feel to be recognized with this Award?

A: It is always appreciated when someone recognizes something to which you devote a lot of time. I feel honored that Ralph Coleman took the time to submit me for this award and that I'm the recipient.

Q: Over your career what projects of achievements have given you the most satisfaction?

A: The project that has provided me the most satisfaction is the one I'm currently working on for the Department of the Navy. Assisting our government staff in the design and implementation of a new data center from the ground up has been very rewarding. Integrating numerous applications from different organizations onto several hardware platforms with specific requirements has been challenging, with an outcome of a winning situation for all.

Q: Do you see certain challenges facing networking professionals?

A: As always, the challenge is to stay current with the new technologies. Certification is the benchmark that seems to define the networking environment and meeting all the new regulations can sometimes be difficult.

Q: How did you get started in the IT industry/field?

A: I am a transplant from the medical reference laboratory field. Due to my technical background, I was offered an entry level position in IT and I really liked the new technologies and fast paced environment. Over the course of eight years, I have been promoted server times and established a great career.

Q: What advice do you have for individuals or teams working in the IT industry?

A: In my opinion, consistency and honesty are key to being successful. At Booz Allen Hamilton these concepts are woven into the fabric of our corporate culture. The company has been in business for 95 years, I think that speaks for itself.

Q: If you were to pick a question you would like to be asked, what would that be and what would be your answer?

A: What is it like to be a volunteer Paramedic/Firefighter? Above the obvious adrenaline rush that comes with some types of calls, it is the ability to become directly involved with the people in your community and provide assistance to those in need.

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