Employee Spotlight: National Engineers Week
Welcome back to another installment of our “Thrive Spotlight” blog series.
In honor of National Engineers Week, which runs through February 25, we want to recognize two of Thrive’s expert engineers who work on opposite ends of the world from one another.
Edward Gries is a Thrive Senior Systems Administrator transitioning to a virtual Chief Information Officer (vCIO) to advise Thrive clients on technology strategy and leadership to optimize their business technology needs and management.
Artur Wasilewski is a Project Engineer specializing in network equipment and deployments with low-level designs (LLD) designed specifically for each Thrive client.
Edward lives in Sarasota, Florida. When he’s not helping Thrive clients, you’ll find him soaking up some fun in the Sunshine State in his spare time. He enjoys running, cycling and visiting National Parks with his family.
Artur lives in Gdansk, Poland. He likes to travel throughout Poland to discover some of the country’s hidden gems. When he’s at home, he enjoys helping his wife in the garden, being outdoors with his four kids, or diving into a fantasy book/audiobook.
Can you tell us about your background and how you came to Thrive?
Edward: I started my career at a help desk supporting people with their computer issues. I was promoted to Engineer, where I solved more advanced computer, software and network problems. Later, I learned how to design and build computer networks, servers and firewalls. After being promoted to Senior Engineer, I worked on more advanced network and server projects, trained junior engineers and assisted clients by solving their business challenges with the right technology tools. I came to Thrive as part of the SouthTech acquisition in 2022 and have enjoyed the new opportunities and experiences in a large company that is an industry leader in Cloud and Cybersecurity.
Artur: I was initially part of the ONI team based in the UK Luton Office. I spent more than six years with the company, where I started as a senior TAC engineer and progressed into the project team, which I always wanted to do. After Brexit, I decided to return to Poland. During the pandemic, remote working opportunities accelerated and I served as a project engineer to support in-demand remote workforce IT initiatives. I joined the Thrive family as part of the ONI acquisition in 2021.
Where did you go to school or get training?
Edward: I graduated from Miami University with a bachelor’s degree and then completed a certification program in Information Technology from University of South Florida. I have received multiple technical certifications, including MCSE, VCP and CISSP.
Artur: I was born in Warsaw and stayed close to home to further my education. While at Łazarski Univesity, I signed up for Cisco Networking Academy, which made me realize that networking was my destiny instead of commerce. I got my degree in foreign trade and, while doing so, secured an entry-level networking CCNA certificate in 2002.
What do you most enjoy about working for Thrive?
Edward: The best part about Thrive is that the company shows how it values its employees by providing an array of customized career paths and opportunities in a leading large market MSP. At Thrive, every employee can tap into their true potential and design their career in a supportive environment.
Artur: It’s an exciting time at Thrive due to the company’s rapid growth through several acquisitions. Thrive’s accelerated expansion has afforded new and extraordinary opportunities for developing innovative projects involving a growing diverse client base and new technologies. In addition, expanding to a multi-vendor approach has set Thrive apart in the marketplace.
Any recent exciting projects at Thrive that you can tell us about?
Edward: Recently, I helped convert two customers from an on-premise file server environment to a fully Cloud environment utilizing Microsoft SharePoint. It’s rewarding to help companies find solutions that enable competitive advantages through digital transformation with efficiency and security.
Artur: I recently completed an exciting project that debuted in the UK involving Fortinet’s FortiGate firewalls. The complex and cutting-edge design involved a complex migration from a checkpoint firewall setup in several sites, including Microsoft Azure Cloud.
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