b'Story Behind the Story: Interview with Quiessence PhillipsInterview withQuiessence Phillips built a career in cybersecurity by first taking things apart. In her role as Deputy CISO, Threat Management for NYC Cyber Command, she has Quiessencehelped unify the citys once decentralized cybersecurity network to safeguard its IT systems and protect vital services. Phillips has risen quickly in a predominantly male-dominated field and learned how to manage in what she calls its bromance culture. Phillips Words matter, she says. When you use the word female, it almost loses its edge. Why cant I just be a boss? Not a female boss. A boss.Deputy CISO City ofNew York & Head ofD F: Did you think you were going to go into cyber?Threat Management QUIESSENCE:Yes, I always wanted to be in technology. I had a knack for reverse engineering things. Im still the same way, taking apart things to see how they work, such as my parents VCR, my computer. In the realm of NYC Cyber Command code, its the same. Something is engineered, and you want to reverse engineer to see how its created.D F: Who in your life influenced you most?QUIESSENCE:My mother understood what I was good at. My mother is a connector. She knew she didnt know it all, but she knew how to connect me with people who could give me knowledge and help me make the best decisions. She was working at a bank and met a girl with a computer science degree. My mother told me, You should meet this young lady. She is doing what you would be good at. The girl came to my home, and I started doing research into computer science. I gravitated towards computing. I knew the power of what this could do, and if I understood at a deeper level, what it meant to me in my life.D F: What had the greatest impact on you during college?QUIESSENCE:I joined the computer lab and worked for the networkI gravitated towards administrator, setting up all the network connections. Icomputing. I knew the took everything they threw at me. I was interested in how effectively all the computers worked together, how wepower of what this could could make them more efficient with software, etc.do, and if I understood at a deeper level, what it meant My bosses gave me tons of projects and allowed meto me in my life. to screw up a lot of things. The ability to play and test in a lot of environments with regard to computers and networks helped me understand the work, not only from a theoretical standpoint, but also from a practical one. I was studying coding languages, algorithms, etc.By the time I graduated, I had amassed a lot of network admin experience. Im the first one in my family to graduate from college.Page 1 5 Page 16'