Profile: Wallace Dalrymple

Name: Wallace Dalrymple

Title: Manager and architect for network, telecommunications and security

Company: General Motors Corp.

Age: 37

Industry: Automotive

30-second biography: Having worked his way through college as an intern network administrator supporting a Novell network, Dalrymple pursued a career where he could use the business knowledge gained from studying for his degree in business and his on-the-job IT experience to bridge the gap between business and IT. Since then, he has added a master's degree in business IT and completed CISSP certification. At General Motors, he is responsible for identifying, evaluating and developing architectural recommendations on emerging technologies in networking, telecommunications and security information.

Current project: "For the past six months, I have been researching, evaluating and presenting on the need for enterprise 'data-centric' security technologies that protect organizational data. Most organizations do a good job of protecting their network perimeters from external attacks and malware but are poor at protecting the data once it leaves the safety of the data center. The market offers lots of products that protect data or a transaction at a given point in time, but the real challenge is providing security end-to-end that stays with the data for its full life cycle. My objective is to collaborate with security vendors and provide the enterprise view on this vital need."

Who in the technology industry most influenced your career? "I have always followed industry technology leaders like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and John Chambers to understand their technology visions. And I am fortunate to work for an organization with great IT leadership. Ralph Szygenda is the longest-tenured CIO in industry. He has standardized GM's IT processes and has built a global team to support GM's global business strategy."

Most-critical technologies for IT this year: "Technologies that enable collaboration and drive new application architectures, such as Web services, SOA and Web 2.0, will be a part of many organizations' portfolios in the coming year. In today's global economy, being able to collaborate with partners and suppliers and to access company data from anywhere is critical. On the networking front, application acceleration, content delivery and unified communications will become more mainstream as companies globalize."

The best thing about today's technology: "In 2007, IT is at a crossroads, and the outcome will emerge over the next three years. Technology is more prevalent in our homes then ever before. I can now integrate my home computer with my TV, stereo system and refrigerator from a browser no matter where I am. Today's technologies allow me to collaborate, socialize and become more efficient -- as long as I don't spend too much time blogging."

The worst thing about today's technology: "New technologies are being deployed at such a rapid pace that standards and interoperability are bringing up the rear."

Technology can …"Make a difference in business and in our lives."

Books most recently on your nightstand: The DNA of Leadership, by Judith E. Glaser

What sets you apart? "An innovative IT person needs the ability to think strategically to meet the company's goals and objectives. I ask myself daily, 'Is what I am doing or working on providing value to the organization?' Another important quality is being a leader and motivator. And finally, if you can't communicate, it is nearly impossible to be successful."

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Copyright © 2007 IDG Communications, Inc.

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