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July 14th 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! 

STEM Give Back Opportunity
One of our core principles in SIMCAC is to give back to our community.   

We're asking local IT leaders to Get Involved! Now, more than ever, there are ways that we can help!
For more information or suggestions on other non-profits that need our support, please contact Nanci Schimizzi
SIMCAC is proud to partner with Comp-U-Dopt who has been providing technology access and education since 2007 by reconditioning gently used corporate computers and distributing them to youth without access to a computer at home. 

 What you can do:
·        Make a gift- just $200 serves another family.  
·        Arrange to donate your corporate equipment.   Comp-U-Dopt has a drop off site in Washington D.C.   Contact Megan Steckly, CEO, for more information  about donating your corporate computers.


SIMCAC Members Speak on a Panel 
"A People-First Culture Starts with You: Why people skills are critical to career success.”


SIMCAC Members, Shamim Mohammad – CIO & CTO, CarMax and Charlotte Fara Francis – CIO, ASCD, participated in a panel last week entitled "A People-First Culture Starts with You: Why people skills are critical to career success.”  This webinar, presented and hosted by Massaro,  was organized after that had surveyed IT leaders and discovered that a high priority concern was figuring out how to build a "people-first" culture.

There was no doubt that embracing a "people-first" culture has a dramatic impact on employee productivity, retention, and satisfaction, not to mention overall company performance. So why are so many organizations struggling to achieve and sustain one? 

Like you, they were looking for answers. So, they assembled a panel of exceptional IT leaders, to listen to their journeys and efforts to change culture. They discussed what has worked for them and how others can leverage those lessons to create change.  In conjunction to our SIMCAC members, the panel also included:

·      John Buccola - CTO, Profit Enhancement (SIM Southern California Chapter Board Member and SIM National Advisory Committee),

·      Michael Ajamie - CTO, State of Arizona PSPRS,

·      Amanda Millett - Head of IT, Customer Support & Services - Schneider Electric (SIM Boston Co Chair SIM Boston Technology Leadership Summit)

The webinar opened with discussions about being genuine, caring for your people by investing in the,, and building their trust in you as a leader. Shamim suggested that there are three things that you need to build trust with your team:

·      Be intentional,

·      Be transparent – always be sincere in what you practice and

·      Listen and measure what you’re doing.

Shamim also mentioned that you need open lines of communication.  Now more than ever, because of remote work, let them know you care about them.  Take a few minutes to check in on them, call them on their birthday or corporate anniversaries, and make sure they’re not burning out. For him, it has been nice have a “human connection” and getting to know his team outside the office.

Fara agreed, but also gave advice to always be kind and offer support, while developing your team. According to Fara, employees have been working 2-3x harder due to current events, so she recommends that you make sure to connect with them and make sure that they are taking care of themselves. For example, she connects with her team by taking virtual coffee breaks and talking with them about how they’re doing.  Her advice to the group on how to be a better leader is to:

·      Always continue leading and learning,

·      Be there for your employees, always and

·      Use your network and executive coaching (if available) to keep yourself growing. 

Attention SIMCAC members! Since our members are the lifeblood of this great chapter, the success of this newsletter depends on our ability to share the happenings within it! So we're going to ask for your help in making this newsletter the best it can be. If you or fellow SIMCAC members have announcements, articles, pictures, videos, or any other content you'd like to share (and please do!), email to or