Employee Spotlight: Stephen Weller

Written January 12th, 2022

Post Tags: cybersecurity, employee spotlight, employee spotlights

If you’re on our network, Stephen knows.

NetCentrics’ networks are almost like a second home for Stephen. He’s been crawling through them on a near-daily basis for over two decades as one of the longest tenured employees. He knows how everything is connected and secured, and knows how each part remains functional and operational. This is no small feat, especially in recent years, given how the network has expanded with the proliferation of smart devices entering and exiting NetCentrics’ managed networks.

Network Security in a Rapidly Changing World

“I have a bird’s-eye-view of it all,” says Stephen, “and I have to stay current to ensure everything on our networks remain secure.” He’s humble and low-key by nature, but also because network administrators rightly need to keep things under wraps. Nowhere is this truer than in a national security context. Loose lips sink ships, after all.

Stephen spent a few years early in his career building custom homes in Northern Virginia, where he grew up, and studying “anything computer related” in his spare time. Eventually he decided that computer networks presented the challenges he sought: a combination of physical and digital infrastructure whose implementation is critical to daily life and national security, too. Stephen came to NetCentrics in an entry-level position and quickly rose in the ranks.

Cloud Infrastructure the Biggest Opportunity

The latter, digital infrastructure, continues to evolve at an incredible pace. “Now it’s all about the cloud,” says Stephen. He says that learning more about cloud architecture is a primary professional goal and personal hobby because the move from on-prem and hybrid solutions presents novel challenges and opportunities. “There is a smaller physical footprint now [compared to when he started] because of all the virtualization,” says Stephen. “But the two still go hand-in-hand to ensure network security and stability.”

The cloud presents a lot of business opportunities, too. (No, we aren’t talking about hacking-as-a-service.) The move to the cloud impacts how NetCentrics serves customers. The addition of cloud-based services means that NetCentrics can do more for customers, often more quickly. The tradeoff for NetCentrics and everyone else is that the cloud can present a broader attack surface. Cloud security knowledge is a skill in high demand.

Stephen tinkers with new technologies in his spare time because he anticipates more demand for cloud-specific knowledge in the future. There’s a lot of room for self-taught practitioners because the field is always in flux. (Those who join NetCentrics can take advantage of annual learning budgets to keep skills sharp, one of several benefits cited by other employees as a favorite.)

Offline, Stephen enjoys getting out on the water and fishing whenever possible. He’s also a fan of the local sports teams, but is reluctant to name a favorite. After all, he’s in the business of keeping things confidential.