The Best And Worst Parts Of Being The Humane Society's CIO - InformationWeek

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11/29/2007
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The Best And Worst Parts Of Being The Humane Society's CIO

The job has real meaning to animal lover Beverly Magda, but that's not always enough to get others excited about working for a nonprofit.

How I got into IT: Growing up as the only girl in a house of boys, I followed their lead, tearing things apart to see how they worked and putting them back together again. It was a natural progression to break a computer apart to see how it operates.


Beverly Magda, CIO, The Humane Society

Beverly Magda
CIO, The Humane Society
The best part of my job: I love that I can apply my IT skills and knowledge in an organization that advocates for animals. I wake up in the morning knowing that what I do makes the world a better place for animals.

And the worst: Working in the nonprofit industry, it's hard to retain good IT talent in an area where we have a lot of government agencies, contractors, and for-profit organizations.

One thing my co-workers don't know about me: Since I was 24 years old, I've had my career path planned out in a Visio diagram. I update it every four or five years. I'm pretty much right on target of where I want to be.

What I rant about: Bad customer service. I demand that my staff provide excellent customer service to our computer users, so it really irritates me when I receive bad service in a retail store or bank. I'm appalled that many businesses consider mediocre customer service acceptable.

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The most bizarre IT request I've ever gotten: I once worked for an organization that was located across the street from Andrews Air Force Base. An IT consultant told us to cover the computers and cables in one of our buildings with aluminum foil because interference from the secret experiments at the base was causing the computers to drop their network connections. Once I did a NetWare client upgrade on the PCs, the problems stopped. Luckily, we didn't invest in aluminum foil.

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