Career Notes 10.4.20
Ep 18 | 10.4.20

Diane M. Janosek: It's only together that we are going to rise. [Education]


Diane M. Janosek: My name is Diane M. Janosek, I'm the commandant for the National Security Agency's National Cryptologic School. I grew up in Canada. My dad was a chemist and my mom was a nurse, but we ended up moving to the United States in eighth grade and Ronald Reagan was the president and it was so different. The geopolitical atmosphere was so different. It was, it truly was a foreign country, even though it's, you know, only just one border just north of us. It really was very different.

Diane M. Janosek: I remember going into high school, never having an American history class or a political science class or US government class, and I thought this is pretty neat, if it really was a foreign concept to me and so knew that it was just really fascinating. So well then, I thought, well, you know, doing something that kind of services the government and understanding and promoting American values, which is something I've always been interested in, and I just have always kind of gravitated to doing things where I thought I could help and kind of raise the nation. So I then after college, I wanted to go to do a joint program in some type of international law arena. So I ended up going to go to law school at Catholic University in Washington, DC, which was a phenomenal experience. And so while I was there, because I'm one of seven kids, you know, and funding education for myself, I went to the career office and it was just a little office and they had a little literally like a half inch notebook. So I was flipping through this book and I ended up applying to a law clerk position, ended up being a phenomenal position. I switched and worked full time and went to law school at night. I graduated in the top 10 in my class and I did it in three and a half years, including law review. But while I was there, the true educational experience was during the daytime. I ended up working for the associate attorney general, Webb Hubbell, and it was just it was just a phenomenal experience. So many fascinating things that I learned there. And then from there, I took a judicial clerkship position with the district court for the District of Columbia. Going from an amazing environment, political and legal environment, into a courthouse with so many things going on it was just fascinating. And then as a result of that, I was asked to go over to the White House counsel's office, which was phenomenal. I started before the Bill Clinton impeachment trial. So the stories I have are just crazy of all these exposures to different things and the full circle. So I end up at the White House and then I also worked at the Pentagon. And then I worked at the I took a position with the National Security Agency.

Diane M. Janosek: I have the amazing privilege of orchestrating the educational environment for military and civilian cyber and cryptologists worldwide for the nation, so the not just for the National Security Agency, but primarily focused on serving the national security enterprise. So I have the unique pleasure of ensuring that we have timely and accurate current content across languages, cryptology, cyber, leadership and business globally over multiple continents, a global workforce, ubiquitous access to learning.

Diane M. Janosek: Last year, we did about four million hours of learning worldwide across languages and cyber and cryptology, so really my goal is to keep the country prepared for the current threats, the future threats and being mission-ready for whatever the nation needs us to do in terms of securing our national security, securing our economic freedoms, and securing the liberties that we have as Americans and enjoy every day.

Diane M. Janosek: I think what I've learned along the way is soft skills are probably the most important, how you translate what you're working on and how you socialize areas that need change, and how you get the buy-in for making that change, and how you support people and develop morale, and encourage people to embrace teamwork. Those attributes and those characteristics of a leader are absolutely the most important.

Diane M. Janosek: I encourage anyone that has an interest in working in a field that involves continuous learning to consider cyber, the cyber field is so multidisciplinary. I heard yesterday how a large company that is in the you know, the top of the Fortune 500 list, hired an accountant 10 years ago and they ended up being an amazing compliance specialist in what they did. So I mention that only because it just shows the complexity of the field and how we really need so many disciplines to make it a team effort. So it's a phenomenal field. You'll love working with the people because they're all different. They come from different walks of life. Every skill is useful to have and it's really a layering of skills. So if you're an individual that loves to learn, loves to collaborate, wants to be part of an area that's making a difference, cybersecurity is absolutely the field for you. We need as many diverse individuals as we can because it's only to gather that we're all going to rise.