SuperWomen in Flash Leadership Award

Tuesday, February 23rd 2021

Published on Read the full article here.

The SuperWomen in Flash Leadership Award honors women who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in the flash memory technology ecosystem. Here is a look at the 2020 winners.

00:00 Camberley Bates: Hi everybody, I am Camberley Bates, I’m the managing partner at Evaluator Group. It is my privilege to introduce you to you the 2020 Flash Memory Summit SuperWomen in Flash Award winners. That’s a mouthful, isn’t it? Anyway, welcome, welcome.

The SuperWomen in Flash was formed about six years ago to promote and celebrate the success of women in the industry with the goal of encouraging more women to enter our market and succeed in this space. I believe we have a super exciting industry, and it’s not always appreciated until somebody actually loses their data and then they start screaming. But here we are, so it’s also my vision to highlight this market to women to encourage them to join our merry band in engineering, market development, business expansion, and perhaps someday when we get back to live Flash Memory Summit events, we will have women at the conference that are in . . . just to see the faces that are out there.

01:00 CB: So, this year, we added a new award to the SuperWomen in Flash, and that is our Rising Star. And the purpose of this is that to recognize the up and comers in the industry that are making impact and have super promise. Over the years with SuperWomen, we have had many women, nonexecutives, cross our paths, and I felt it was important and the committee felt it was important that their achievements are shown up in pursuit of our ultimate goal of encouraging more women to join our industry.

Also, one of the trends that we have seen within the flash movement is the women that move from a core engineering role to program management, business management, product strategy and marketing. And my personal belief it is that it is the strength of merging of women’s left and right brains, fully used in this leadership positions, and so I think most of the people that we have today as awards are indicative of those statements.

01:52 CB: So, without further ado, let me introduce our first award winner. Today, I’m very proud to announce our first SuperWomen in Flash, Rising Star Deepti Reddy. Deepti came to America to pursue a bachelor’s degree at Purdue University in engineering. And then after getting her engineering degree, joined somebody that we all know, LSI-Avago, and actually in my state today, Colorado, down in Colorado Springs, when she was at Avago, she dived into technology and was head engineer as she authored patents for host bus adapters with SAS and SATA. These included patents for storing errors, for error recovery, detecting errors and the topology without loss of data, connectivity or performance segregation.

But it was not just engineering that she did. She also took client requirements in that interaction and drove significant revenue. She showed these multidimensional skills, not only at Avago, but then going on to SanDisk as a customer-facing software engineer and worked at customer priorities and drove the technical issues as well as the marketing issues or the design issues to further the efficiency and making sure the needs of the customers was met.

03:11 CB: And from there, she really shined at a startup called PNY for enterprise SSDs This is a broad responsibility. She was an engineer there, but she was really product management, covering sales channel, marketing, product requirements and presenting to major customers. While none of these are unique, what was unique is how she brought all of these together. And talking to the people that had worked for her, said it was the energy that she brought, going to those technical boundaries, being able to take marketing terms and translating them into what is really clearly communicating. This is the merging of the left and right brain that I was talking about that brings markets to life. She has continued with these mix of skills at Dell EMC working on systems and adoptive flash technologies for file, object, HCI, converged infrastructure as a principal for product strategy. So, without further ado, please give congratulations to Deepti in her award.

04:08 Deepti Reddy: Well, thank you, Camberley. I’m extremely grateful to receive the SuperWoman in Flash Rising Star Award of 2020. This accomplishment is something that I could not have achieved alone. There are many others I would like to thank for being instrumental in helping me emerge as an upcoming leader in the storage industry. Celeste Crystal, who’s a product marketing leader at Broadcom, has been a great mentor in my professional journey. I would like to thank her for having the confidence in me and for nominating me for this award.

Additional thanks to my family for providing me the opportunity to move to this country at the age of 17 to pursue my dreams. Last, but not the least, thank you to Camberley Bates for leading the efforts in promoting and celebrating the success of women in the flash storage industry. I hope that this recognition of my work can serve as an inspiration to other upcoming women in the field. I will continue my efforts to not only rise higher, but to also enable younger women to rise even higher in the storage industry.

05:10 CB: So, thank you very much and congratulations again.

05:15 DR: Thank you.

05:16 CB: Now for the SuperWoman in Flash Leadership award. This year’s honor goes to Barbara Murphy, the vice president of marketing for WekaIO. So, a bit of a shout-out to Barbara. As you hear, she is quite the Irish woman with that good, strong roll of the “r.” Born and raised and educated as an engineer in Ireland, and looking for the road to success, she came to the Silicon Valley because she knew that’s where it was at.

So, since she’s arrived, she’s been an influencer and promoter of data storage, especially in high-performance computing, which if you’ve been around Barbara, you know her energy is contagious. She’s clearly not afraid to take anything on, sometimes a little bit intimidating, even to me. I know that might be amazing to a few people, but she is. I first met her when she was leading the marketing at Panasas, but before that she drove influence with a team at the forefront of Serial ATA, an enterprise storage at 3ware and eventually leading as a general manager at AMCC. We have seen her here at FMS as a marketing executive with HGST driving enterprise assistance adoption.

06:23 CB: And one of her babies was Amplidata and that one we see is adopting QLC nowadays. That brings us today to Weka. We have seen the explosion of AI and HPC as part of everyday technology and Weka has come out in the market as a new leader for HPC. Under her marketing vision and work, Weka has published industry-leading benchmarks based on exploitations of NVMe flash, including their patents regarding to data placement, data protection, advancing beyond ACD capabilities in that market. Weka is driving the attention and visibility of what they’re doing.

Again, she’s taking her engineering and being able to explain to the HPC and the AI data scientists in the marketing terms to the business to people what this really means. So, what have they achieved? They’re placed first in the IO-500 10 Node Challenge. They’ve got top honors with STAC, along with HPE Apollo, for tick analytics benchmark. What I would like to do now is . . . I congratulate Barbara for to the leadership role and thank you for being such a leader.

07:36 Barbara Murphy: Wow. I don’t know what to say, Camberley. That was pretty amazing.

First of all, I’m humbled to be in the presence of Deepti and you. In different ways, Deepti, what you’re doing is amazing. You’re setting an example already so early in your career. I really hope you stick with storage, it’s an amazing industry. It’s seen incredible changes with the adoption of flash, which really . . . Every time we think storage is done, something new comes along that makes it new and exciting again.

And Camberley, to you, you’ve been somebody that I’ve been in the presence of for quite a long time now and you’re one of the true leaders in terms of an analyst community — that you’re really setting the bar in terms of example. So, thank you both for being in your presence. I am truly humbled.

08:24 BM: For me, personally, this has been a journey of a love affair with technology and being able to articulate that out to the industry at-large and be a champion for driving the storage industry to finding new heights.

So, again, I couldn’t have done this on my own. I’ve had amazing mentors along the way. One that I’d highlight is Faye Pairman, CEO of Panasas, who was just a true mentor to me since my Adaptec days. Another one was just setting examples of how to do business properly, was all of the team at Adaptec. That was an amazing company that I had my very early . . . My, actually, very first job in storage and I would say that all of the people that it created were real high business value people who really appreciated the customer and their input.

But at the end of the day, it really comes down to having great technology, which I’ve had the benefit with Panasas and then later in Weka. And prior to that, at AMCC/3ware, being able to take these new technologies and drive them to the next level has been part of what keeps my passion going. And thanks again, Camberley. Thanks to the committee. I really appreciate it. I’m humbled, I’m flattered, I don’t deserve it, but thank you.

09:47 CB: Thank you. And everybody at Flash Memory Summit, thanks for showing up. Thanks for being here and, hopefully, we will all see each other face-to-face in 2021.

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