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May 22nd Newsletter


Welcome to the SIMCAC Weekly Newsletter....
....Where each week, we'll share SIMCAC announcements, member spotlights, local/national industry news, upcoming events, and recaps of past ones! 

SIMCAC Member Spotlight Article
Joe Kraus - CIO, US Holocaust Memorial Museum

-Tell us a little about your career so far.
      Joe Kraus is the Chief Information Officer for the US Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C.  He is responsible for Information Technology (IT) operations, security, strategy, and systems development and is a member of the Museum’s leadership team.  Prior to joining the Museum in May 2010, Mr. Kraus spent 3 1/2 years at the US Government Accountability Office as the Chief Information Officer where he led a staff of over 100 government employees and 200 contract staff.  Prior to the US GAO, he served as the Chief Information Officer at Intelsat for six years.  His career includes over 30 years of developing commercial aircraft and telecommunication satellites, ground networks and real time data processing systems. Mr. Kraus has been twice recognized by CIO magazine for the implementation of systems and processes for improving corporate agility and by the Federal Enterprise Architecture Council for the implementation of best practices in information architecture.Mr. Kraus earned his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and his Masters of Science in Systems Management from the University of Southern California.

One of the areas that Joe has been working on as the CIO of the Museum is a project to preserve the archives of the Holocaust Memorial Museum. A digital archive of about 1 Petabyte of data and over 30 million objects.

-I hear that you recently spoke at the Preservation and Archiving Special Interest Group Annual Conference.  In your own words, what exactly is digital preservation?

      There is a gap in many people's understanding as what constitutes digital preservation. Even in IT, many believe, I saved it on the computer, it will be there forever or I backed up my data, therefore it is protected. Not correct. Bits change state over time. Underlying technologies evolve. So a file I saved in 2010 may be corrupted or may not even open if the underlying application is no longer available. So to ensure that the integrity and availability of digital content is maintained, it has to be actively and continuously managed. There also needs multiple copies that are geographically separated and technologically separated. There also needs to be in place, the policies and procedures needed to maintain the inventory, make it searchable and make it accessible. In addition to all of this, the "digital preservation" industry is relatively nascent with only a handful of off the shelf products that automate the management of the integrity and the inventory of the content. 
      At the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, we have collected about 1 Petabyte of Holocaust archives consisting of videos, documents, and photographs. This collection grows at about 100 Terabytes a year and while we have been collecting content since the Museum has been open (about 25 years), we really did not get our digital preservation program off the ground until 2015 and then in 2017 we selected a digital preservation platform from a company in Madrid Spain. This has been a tight team effort between our project manager, 3 digital preservation experts, our network and storage engineer, out IT security officer, our CTO and myself. In order to meet best practices, we are deploying three copies of our archive, one in Amazon's Web Service (AWS) product called Glacier, one in our data center, and one in our off site collections facility. The choice of Glacier and our data center gives us the technological separation. Our copy in the Collections facility gives us human separation (it is not accessible by people, only the digital preservation platform). This mitigates the risk of untended or malicious deletion of our collection. Supporting this also required an upgrade to our Wide Area Network to support the movement of a significant amount of data. Even using a 10 GBps direct connect to AWS, we still need about 6 months to copy the archive to AWS. Once everything is in place our digital preservation team will have the task of keeping the content readable as formats and standards change. The platform maintains the integrity autonomously through a series of mathematical algorithms. 
      It has been a great learning experience to step into the world of digital preservation and coming to the understanding that saving data is not at all preserving data. 

-You’ve been a long-time member of SIMCAC. Can you tell us a little bit about your experience with SIMCAC throughout the years and how you feel about where we are headed?
      Joe is on the board board of the Capital Area Chapter of the Society for Information Management where he has been a member since 2002. SIMCAC has been a great organization to be a part of. The Capital Area Chapter has become my close circle of CIO and senior IT leadership colleagues and friends. Our monthly programs allows us to explore a wide variety of topics and meet new people that has relevance to many of the activities we are pursuing in our work. I highly encourage others to join. Over the past two years we have made significant improvement in our programs, our STEM outreach, and our sponsorship efforts. Going forward we are building a mentorship program and are alway looking for new leadership and participation.

June SIMCAC Event - The Impact of STEM Programs on the Workforce

      Think today’s war for technology talent is tough? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in computer occupations is projected to increase 12.5% by 2024 relative to 2014 levels, so it’s only going to get worse.

      Many government programs and non-profit organizations are focused on addressing these labor shortages through programs that inspire our youth to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. In fact, past and current administrations have made this a top priority, securing both public and private funding to improve STEM education and prepare teachers. And SIM, the nation’s largest professional association of senior technology leaders, has a long-standing tradition of supporting these programs through contributions of time and money.

      But, are these programs working? What else can we do to help?

      SIMCAC invites current and eligible prospective members to join us for a conversation with STEM leaders representing the public, private, and non-profit sectors as we take the pulse and discuss the future of our nation’s technology workforce. A cocktail reception with heavy appetizers will follow the program.

      Event underwritten by Randstad. Thank you Enterprise Knowledge for hosting us. 

Register Now!

Our Moderator:

Joe Malfesi

Joe Malfesi - Joe is now semi-retired in a part-time role as Vice President, Operations at Transaction Network Services, Inc. (TNS), a global provider of data communications and interoperability solutions. While he now focuses on managing M&A transitions, in his previous role as Vice President, Global Infrastructure Services, Mr. Malfesi utilized his extensive experience in both information technology and business line management to ensure non-stop availability of the infrastructure for TNS which has a presence in over 60 countries. Prior to joining TNS, Mr. Malfesi was the Chief Technology Operations Officer at Amtrak where he was named by the Maryland/D.C. Technology Council as the 2011 IT Executive of the Year-Government for his management of a major infrastructure improvement program relocating data centers and changing network providers while supporting the concurrent rollout of “Big Bang” SAP and the introduction of eTicketing.

       In 1989 Mr. Malfesi joined Hughes Network Systems (HNS) as the senior information technology officer where he blueprinted the system architecture that supported a 600% revenue growth. His last role at HNS was as Chief Technology Officer, focusing on evaluating emerging technologies, developing roadmaps, reducing infrastructure costs and leading the development for business continuity and information security strategies. Mr. Malfesi has also held senior IT management positions at a computer manufacturer, a health care services company, and a major appliance distributor.                                                                                                 

      Mr. Malfesi graduated from Fordham University with a B.S. in Marketing Management. He also holds an M.B.A. from New York University with concentrations in Computer Applications and Accounting. He is board Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) and was named to the International Who’s Who of Information Technology in 1998. Mr. Malfesi has been an active member of the Society for Information Management (SIM) for nearly 30 years and has served as the Chairman of the Capital Area Chapter (SIMCAC) and a member of the Advanced Practices Council. He currently is the STEM Outreach Chairman for SIMCAC. He has been a guest speaker at the Robert H. Smith School of Business CIO Forum, SAP Admin & Infrastructure Conference, HMG Strategy CIO Executive Leadership Forums and a judge at the annual American University Kogod Case Competition since 2005.

Our Panel:

Ruthe Farmer

      Ruthe Farmer has focused on inclusion in technology since 2001 and is Chief Evangelist at CSforAll. She served as Senior Policy Advisor for Tech Inclusion at the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy focusing on President Obama’s call to action for Computer Science for All, and previously strategy and K-12 programs at the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). She has launched multiple national inclusion programs including Aspirations in Computing, TECHNOLOchicas, the AspireIT outreach program, Lego Robotics for Girl Scouts and more. She served as 2012 Chair of CSEDWeek, was named a White House Champion of Change for Technology Inclusion in 2013, received the Anita Borg Institute Award for Social Impact in 2014, and the UK Alumni Award for Social Impact in 2015. Ruthe holds a BA from Lewis & Clark College and an MBA in Social Entrepreneurship from the University of Oxford.

Register Now
Register Now to Reserve Your Spot 
The Inaugural SIMCAC Charity Golf Outing Will Take Place on September 27th, 2019!

We welcome IT leaders to join us for a day of networking, golfing and giving back to the community. As IT leaders, it is our duty to give back to STEM and encourage others to join alongside us. We look forward to sharing this exciting golf outing with you. Learn more about the golf outing here.
Register Now

One of the slides from last week's chapter event presented by Kristen Lameraeux
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