We had the good fortune of connecting with Ezra Vallez and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ezra, what’s the most important thing you’ve done for your children?
I’ve left anything behind that conflicted with the success of my child and his happiness. COVID-19 had a huge impact on my career and my child, finding time for homeschooling full time to socialization was difficult. There were some days where he would get up and dread online learning, he only enjoyed moments where his friends can interact with eachother in virtual class through music or interactive learning. When the parks shut down, it was crunch time to find new creative ways to keep him engaged.
I went from being a full time IT analyst to a full time Teacher, school nurse, lunch lady, etc all within an 8 hour work day. Some of the major changes I found myself making were a change in jobs to better reflect his new schedule, hiring a tutor to help in the areas he was falling behind in, creating a community around us that could help offset some of these new growing pains. All of these things required some form of sacrifice in my life and his.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m an Information Technology Analyst and Lead with over 10 years in the Information Technology sector. I work something like a tech guru within companies inspiring enterprises to transform their business through security, automation, analytics and machine learning. Working in Information Technology for multimillion dollar brands and startups, my team and I know that the transformation of operational excellence and innovation all depend on modern technology.
I started my career off as a consultant at Google right after high school working as an Operations Specialist in archiving. I then moved on under the same title at a startup then known as Milo/eBayNow, a personal shopping delivery app, that was then purchased by eBay. eBay shortly sold the division where it successfully was used as business models for brands like Google shopping express and Instacart.
Following major layoffs at Brandwatch I was offered a unique opportunity with Sony Playstation as a Senior Analyst where I supported research and development teams, executives, and business lines. I worked on AA titles such as NBA2k and The Last of US, the PlayStation 4 console, and PlayStation VR release.
After some organizational changes, I moved onto Visa Inc. Where I implemented “tech bars” that offered on demand tech support for Visa employees and contractors. This tech bar model was built across several campuses including New York, Miami, Japan, London, Philippines, San Francisco, Palo Alto, Texas and Foster City. While at Visa I also designed a new hire virtual welcome program, and acted as a leader for incoming interns and program graduates.
I then left Visa to take on a new venture as a Senior MAC Engineer at JP Morgan Chase Private bank, a financial institution managing portfolios for clients worth 250 million or more. I worked alongside the CEO, Executives, brokers and Chase mobile teams. During my time at Chase, my team and I successfully transformed several business lines into 100% virtual remote work environments by empowering people and enterprise environments with the right insight, at the right time, to make the best decisions. All the while, I leveraged modern technology to build sustainability into everything.
My roles have allowed me to work with several organizations such as Yearup! to empower young women and young adults with little college experience on transitioning into enterprise environments and pursuing careers in Information Technology. I believes with the right leadership and encouragement I can help transform the demographic of minorities in STEM industries.
I currently work as a IT Lead for a major artist management firm . I learned 3 lessons along the way:
1. Invest in yourself, wherever you want your career to go don’t wait on a company to take you there. Sometimes in order for a brand to see your value you have to add value to yourself. Take a class, add a certification, make yourself available for new things.
2. Don’t be afraid to walk away. It’s ok to be comfortable but don’t be afraid to be uncomfortable, we all have to do things we don’t like. Some of stay in a position too long and it hurts us, some of us are unhappy at work and that can hurt people around you, don’t be the reason someone, even you or something fails.
3. Treat everyone the way you want to be treated, you, never know when you’ll meet them again
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
grab a matcha latte from stumptown and make sure you get some baked goods from Sugarbloom bakery. Stumptown carries their pastries, or you can order directly through the baker herself.
definitely stop by Sultan chicken in DTLA and top off dinner at Hungry Joes or grab Hughs Hot Bowls The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to shoutout all the parents and teachers who have had to make adjustments for our kids, bosses, coworkers, etc. For also making adjustments along with us. It takes a village! I highly recommend any and all books by Dr. Shefali Tsabary, conscious parenting is a thing!