BigPanda and Blackrock 3 Partners Announce Winners of 2021 Incident Commander Awards
Winners From Citrix, DirecTV Latin America, PlayStation and Gamestop Honored by Peers for Above-and-Beyond IT Incident Response
October 21, 2021
Share this

BigPanda and online incident management academy Blackrock 3 Partners announced the winners of the 2021 Incident Commander, a peer-voted award program.

Now in its second year, the awards honor superheroes in support, ITOps, DevOps, SRE or in the NOC who go above and beyond when it comes to IT incident response, handling high-impact global incidents with exemplary professionalism and skill.

“With the pandemic fueling near overnight digital transformation across industries, the vital importance of Incident Commanders has never been clearer,” said Rob Schnepp, founding partner of Blackrock 3 and a longtime fire department Chief Officer and Incident Commander in the San Francisco Bay Area. “The winners of this year’s Incident Commander Awards have demonstrated exceptional leadership and talent, resolving outages and other IT issues around the clock under high-stakes circumstances.”

This year’s Incident Commanders are:

- Jaime Morell, senior IT systems engineer at Citrix. Jaime has earned a reputation as a “go-to guy” when it comes to incidents and resolutions for the problems within his organization’s systems. He says some of the biggest challenges IT Ops professionals face are the differences in environments, operating systems, and tools they come across, as well as delivering a seamless and positive experience while staying ahead of the issues themselves. “In my line of work, mistakes will cost you time and money. Outages are not acceptable, so I pride myself in my attention to detail both inside and outside of work.”

- Adrián Perez Sisay, incident manager at DirecTV Latin America. Adrián says the most important Incident Commander trait is, without a doubt, being proactive. He adds that it’s vital to remain relentless in the quest to solve and prevent issues, and that anything is possible with the proper support from peers and leaders. For new IT Ops professionals entering the industry, he says, “Be open-minded and be ready to expand your knowledge by working alongside key people.”

- Ben Narramore, director of service management at PlayStation. Ben says that the reason he and his team are successful is that his organization allows them to be directly responsible for carrying out their mission to resolve incidents. He says working in IT Ops can be demanding, but also equally rewarding. “I have never had a job as stressful, crazy, rewarding and exhilarating as IT Ops. When you’re in it, you’re in it. Not only are you a manager, you’re a repairman, an IT guy, a delivery person, a taxi driver, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. To say the least, you wear a lot of hats. But with many hats comes many rewards.”

- Misti Gilmore, director of IT service and delivery at Gamestop. During her time at GameStop, Misti has led the charge in streamlining ITIL processes (Change, Incident, Problem, Service Request and Knowledge) to increase efficiency and improve production stability by 30%. She also implemented an automated testing framework to support the CI/CD pipeline, resulting in no critical defects during the launch of the new website.

The Incident Commanders Winners Circle Event, hosted by BigPanda and moderated by Blackrock3, will take place on Nov. 17 from 3-4 p.m. PT. Winners will be speaking on a panel, “The face of the Future of IT Ops Excellence,” discussing how their role has changed throughout the pandemic and their predictions for the future of IT Ops or their respective industries. They will also share notable team wins and how they’d like to thank their teams, as well as where they are donating their $2,500 prize and why.

The Winner’s Circle event will take place on November 17, 2021. To join the Incident Commanders Winners’ Circle Event.

BigPanda and Blackrock 3 Partners developed the Incident Commander award program to specifically acknowledge individuals who rise above the alerts and outages to perform their jobs like true Incident Commanders. Winners were nominated by their peers, finalists were posted on Sept. 20, 2021 and the community voted on the four they felt were most deserving. Winners each received a $2,500 gift card from Global Giving to donate to the charity of their choice, a 10-hour Incident Commander Blackrock 3 Partners course for five members of their team.

Share this

The Latest

December 07, 2021

The Holiday Season means it is time for APMdigest's annual list of Application Performance Management (APM) predictions, the most popular content on APMdigest, viewed by tens of thousands of people in the IT community around the world for more than a decade. Industry experts offer thoughtful, insightful, and often controversial predictions on how APM, AIOps, Observability, Open Telemetry, and related technologies will evolve and impact business in 2022 ...

December 06, 2021

As organizations strive to advance digital acceleration efforts, outpace competitors, and better service customers, the path to better, more secure software lies in AIOps. As DevOps teams continue to adopt progressive delivery models and the volume of production deployments and configuration changes sees even more growth, here are a few of the things that your DevOps teams should keep in mind, as they look to make the most of their IT toolkits via AIOps ...

December 02, 2021

In the old days of monolithic architectures, IT operations teams could manage service-disrupting incidents themselves. But these architectures have evolved, and the systems our digital economy relies on today are too complex and produce too much data for human operators to monitor, let alone fix. Artificial Intelligence for IT Operations (AIOps) solutions automate system monitoring and remediation strategies to help DevOps and SRE teams ensure that services and apps are continuously available ...

December 01, 2021

As global and emerging technology trends continue to drive the network to evolve at an accelerated pace, we wanted to better understand the current trends and challenges these teams face. As a result, LiveAction conducted a survey of networking professionals that on average manage more than 500 networking devices at organizations with more than 600 employees. Let's dive into four of the key insights revealed in this report ...

November 30, 2021

Thanks to pandemic-related work-from-home (WFH) and digital/mobile customer experience initiatives, employees and users are more distributed than ever. At the same time, organizations everywhere are adopting a cloud-first or cloud-smart architecture, distributing their business applications across private and public cloud infrastructures. Private data centers continue to be consolidated, while more and more branch offices are connecting to data centers and the public cloud simultaneously. Maintaining application performance for distributed users in this increasingly hybrid environment is a significant challenge for IT teams ...

November 29, 2021

In a world where constant change is becoming routine, Gartner said that infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders must shift their traditional focus from efficiency to one of adaptive resilience. I&O leaders must re-imagine how they manage their talent, their platforms and operations, if they want to dynamically and quickly exploit new opportunities ...

November 23, 2021

The holidays are almost upon us, and retailers are preparing well in advance for the onslaught of online consumers during this compressed period. The Friday following Thanksgiving Day has become the busiest shopping day of the year, and online shopping has never been more robust. But with supply chain disruptions limiting merchandise availability, customer experience will make the difference between clicking the purchase button or typing a competitor's web address ...

November 22, 2021

The 2021 holiday season will be an inflection point: As the economy starts to ramp up again while the country still grapples with the pandemic, holiday shopping will be the most digital holiday season in history by a long shot ... The work must begin months before, as organizations learn from the year prior and take steps to improve experiences and operations, fine-tune systems, plug in new data sources to enrich machine-learning algorithms, move more workloads to the cloud, automate, and experiment with new tech. These efforts culminate in "API Tuesday" ...

November 18, 2021

Most (83%) of nearly 1,500 business and IT decision makers believe that at least 25% of their workforce will remain hybrid post-pandemic, according to the Riverbed | Aternity Hybrid Work Global Survey 2021. While all indicators signal hybrid work environments are the future, most organizations are not fully prepared to deliver a seamless hybrid work experience ...

November 17, 2021

The results of the 2021 BMC Mainframe Survey highlight the consistent positive growth outlook as seen in recent years, with 92 percent of respondents viewing the mainframe as a platform for long-term growth and new workloads, and 86 percent of extra-large shops expecting MIPS (millions of instructions per second) to grow in the coming year. This is not surprising, considering the disruptive nature of the modern digital economy ...