Fuel Original Member Spotlight: John Matelski

Posted by Fuel HQ on May 28, 2015 11:00:00 AM

by Fuel HQ

The Fuel Original Member Spotlight is a regular series on the Fuel for Thought blog, highlighting inaugural members of Fuel who joined the community in 2015. Each spotlight sheds light on a Fuel member’s background, industry experience, and shares some little-known facts and interesting member stories.

Fuel Board Member John Matelski serves as the Chief Innovation and Information Officer for DeKalb County, Georgia, the third largest county in the State of Georgia. He’s been working in cybersecurity since before it was even called cybersecurity. In 1991 when the World Wide Web was introduced he was working as a security consultant at a few federal government agencies, and that was when he saw the beginning of the need for true cybersecurity.

John has been using Palo Alto Networks technologies since 2006, he’s a Certified Government Chief Information Officer, and has been GCIC and NCIC certified since 2000. Read more about John and his predictions for Fuel’s future, and connect with him in the Fuel community. JohnAre you a morning person or night owl?
I am actually both. Since about 5 years of age, I have tended to burn the candle at both ends. I require very little sleep (about 5 hours per night), so I am usually up by about 5 AM and I don’t go to sleep until just before midnight!

Piece of technology you can’t live without? 
My smartphone.  I am obsessively connected to it!  To the point that I sometime even feel phantom vibrations, even when my device is not on me.

Favorite ice cream flavor? Mint Chocolate Chip

Preferred social media platform? Can we find you there? 

You will find me most on Twitter and LinkedIn.

What was your first job? 
From the ages of 12-15, I worked at a family friend’s Coast to Coast hardware store in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  That chain is now defunct……..I guess that shows you how old I may be? J

What is your go-to news outlet that you read, watch, and/or listen to for industry news?  I stay abreast of current trends in technology and security mostly through user group activities.  Fuel has become a go-to place for security trends and happenings.  I supplement this with my membership and participation in the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) as well as Law Enforcement Online.

Trend in cybersecurity that excites you most?
Cloud based Firewall services and protection – everything these days is moving to the cloud, and as I endeavor to drive innovation in DeKalb County, leveraging cloud based services is key.  The fact that Palo Alto Networks Enterprise Security Platform protects all aspects of my organization, and is natively integrated to handle cloud and endpoint security with complete visibility and control, is very exciting and comforting.

Favorite part about being a Fuel member?
My favorite part about being a Fuel member is having access to other members and their lessons learned and leading practices that help me resolve product implementation issues, improve product integration, and allow me to network with a community of business leaders and practitioners who have the same challenges as I do surrounding security.

What do you hope to get out of Fuel?
I am a realist who has been involved in user groups for over 20 years.  What I hope to get out of Fuel depends on what I am prepared to GIVE!  I want to contribute to this premier community of security professionals so that I can help others, while helping myself and my organization.  I want to help shape the future of security by leveraging the aggregate talents of the entire membership.  By doing so, I will be able to teach and learn, while ensuring that all of us our doing our part to enhance our individual and connected security infrastructures.

Any predictions for Fuel’s future?
Based on its current path and growth, I predict that Fuel is going to become a go-to global source where members can connect, engage, share and learn about global security trends, while also being a place for more specific practical information to help ensure that my IT security infrastructure is sound and evolving as needed to keep up with the changing landscape.   


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