Meet the zNextGen Team

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Hemanth Rama
Project Manager

BMC Software
Email: hrama@bmc.com

Why zNextGen? It’s been 13 years since I began my mainframe journey. It started off from Northern Illinois University back in 2003. I’m currently working at BMC Software and hold 1 granted patent and 2 pending. Throughout my career, I’ve worked on very exciting projects and met some incredible professors and colleagues who are very passionate about the mainframe.  zNextGen is a great platform to share knowledge and experience with young passionate mainframers. I believe zNextGen will shape the future of the mainframe and wanted to be part of it and share my knowledge and experience with the community.  I look forward to meeting everyone! 

Luisa Martinez
IBM Representative

IBM Corporation 
E-mail: martinel@us.ibm.com

Why zNextGen? In the last 2 years that I have been attending SHARE, zNextGen has allowed me to learn from, and create connections with incredible people from a variety of companies who are passionate about their careers in the mainframe area. As a new member of the zNextGen family, I hope to continue to spread the excitement about the mainframe, and help provide the essential resources to help educate and welcome the new generation of mainframers.

 

Warren Harper
Program Manager

 

BMC Software
E-mail: warren.harper64@gmail.com

Why zNextGen? For me, what makes zNextGen so great to be a part of is the amazing diversity of people you meet. Being a mainframe "newbie" myself, I'm always happy to listen and learn from the perspectives and experiences of those with 40 years of expertise, or 4 months. Put simply, this organization is exceptionally good at connecting you with people and information that will educate you about what you don't know.

 

Reg Harbeck

Reg Harbeck
Enterprise-wide Program
Program Officer

 

Mainframe Analytics Ltd.
E-mail: reg@harbeck.ca
Blog: http://mainframeanalytics.blogspot.com/

WhyzNextGen? When I first became a mainframer in 1987, I noticed that I was over half a generation younger than my average fellow mainframer. As I've moved through my career, I've watched and listened as this generation has moved towards retirement and wrote an article  (see Mainframe Management Skills: Securing the Future of the Enterprise at zJournal.com) and gave a SHARE presentation on the topic in Anheim. Then, when I saw that zNextGen was created as part of the effort to create a new generation of mainframers, I realized it was a perfect match for my interests in this important issue - so I had to join!

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Cody Giardinello
Deputy Project Manager

 

CA Technologies

E-mail: Cody.Giardinello@ca.com

Why zNextGen? The zNextGen and mainframe communities have been so welcoming since I first joined out of college. There is so much to learn in the space, but everyone I have interacted with is equally as passionate about the technology as they are about passing the knowledge on to the next generation. That is the impact I hope to have as I continue my career and onboard the next generation of mainframers.


Past Leadership

Warren Harper
Project Manager

(2017-2018)

BMC Software
E-mail: warren.harper64@gmail.com

Why zNextGen? For me, what makes zNextGen so great to be a part of is the amazing diversity of people you meet. Being a mainframe "newbie" myself, I'm always happy to listen and learn from the perspectives and experiences of those with 40 years of expertise, or 4 months. Put simply, this organization is exceptionally good at connecting you with people and information that will educate you about what you don't know.

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Holden O'Neal
Deputy Project Manager

(2016-2017)

 

SAS Institute Inc.
E-mail: holden.o'neal@sas.com

Why zNextGen? The first time I got in front of a green screen I was a bit shell shocked and honestly overwhelmed. It was nothing like the PCs I had grown up with and was a unique creature all on its own. I also quickly noticed that nearly all of my coworkers were 20 years older than me and that was a bit intimidating at first. Finding zNextGen at SHARE gave me a community of peers who were just as new and eager to learn about this incredibly powerful platform. Communicating with other members of zNextGen reminds me that I’m not the only one climbing the learning curves of JCL, ISPF, and many other applications and features unique to the mainframe.

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Tetiana Iakovenko
Deputy Project Manager

(2016-2017)

 

IBM Corporation
E-mail: tiakovenko@us.ibm.com

Why zNextGen? Joining IBM a couple years ago gave me an amazing opportunity to work with huge corporations in Minnesota, and discover the importance of z Systems for each business. I have noticed a trend through; such as more people retiring than the younger generation that are replacing them. I do believe in great results when an experienced mainframer and curious millennials work in a team environment. Together, we can do great things and continue to drive innovations for z Systems. My main aspiration of being part of the zNextGen team is to help inspire and grow interest in the platform amongst the newer generation!

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Troy Crutcher
IBM Representative

(2013-2017)

IBM Corporation
E-mail: tdcrutch@us.ibm.com

Why zNextGen? I joined zNextGen as the IBM representative to the project. As I am a project manager for the IBM Academic Initiative for the z Systems team, it was a perfect fit. I get to interact with some of the brightest minds of our generation through zNextGen; and get the opportunity to connect them to my students who attend Academic Initiative member schools who are looking for new and exciting career paths. This partnership allows us all to collaborate and help shape the future generation of new mainframers; and the future looks amazing!

Vit Gottwald 

Vit Gottwald
Project Manager
(2015-2015)

CA Technologies, Inc.

Why zNextGen? I joined z/NextGen to get connected with peers from other companies who have committed their career to the mainframe. Being new in this industry means a lot of challenges. And SHARE seems to me to be the best answer to many of them. You meet the people who walk the walk and get answers without marketing noise. At the same time you have the opportunity to get connected and network with other mainframe "youngsters" all across the industry. That gives you a view from outside the box of your own site and company.

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Regina Robbins
Project Officer
(2015-2015)

SAS Institute Inc.

Why zNextGen? When I first was introduced to mainframe I was told a few times it was a dying technology and did not have a lot of young faces. So going to share and finding out about zNextGen I felt it was the perfect fit. There is nothing better than finding a community that you can fit into and all thrive. So im glad to be apart and zNextGen and I am excited to see what the future holds.

Linda Mooney

Linda Mooney
Project Manager
(2012-2014)

 

County of Sacramento

Why zNextGen? It was irresistible! I am intensely curious and always after new things to learn. It was just natural that when the z/OS installers at my shop retired and left for new opportunities that I would leap at the opportunity to ‘step up'. Of course that means I have a lot to learn. What could be more perfect? With zNextGen I have the opportunity to learn from the best. I also have the honor of helping some of the new folks.

 Justin Bastin
Justin Bastin
Project Manager
(2011-2012)

 

EMC Corporation

Why zNextGen? Being new to the “Mainframe” world, zNextGen provides an excellent opportunity to develop my technical skills as well as the interpersonal skills that are needed to excel within this environment. The zNextGen organization is the future of our business and having the opportunity to collaboratively mold its future is rewarding. Networking amongst the zNextGen community represents a revolving door of learning that never ends and does not exist anywhere else. My zNextGen experiences thus far have been the breath of fresh air that allows me to know that “I am not alone!”

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Iris Rivera
Project Manager
(2005-2011)

IBM Corporation

Why zNextGen? 

 Kristine Harper

Kristine Bastin
Project Manager
(2005-2010)

 

Why zNextGen? It was too easy for me to say yes to this exceptional opportunity. We have nothing to lose, and it is exciting to play a role in a group that I consider critical to the future of the mainframe. As a zealous newbie myself, I think there are so few resources out there for up-and-coming mainframers, and that’s what zNextGen is all about – providing those resources, the information, the connections and the friendships that will help us navigate our careers and get comfortable in whatever mainframe role we are pursuing. Why zNextGen? Why not!!