Alumni Success Story: Ignacio Perez, ’09, ’11

We are proud to feature our next alumni success story spotlighting Computer Science and Executive MBA graduate, Ignacio Perez.  Ignacio graduated from DU in 2011 with an Executive Master of Business Administration degree and a Bachelors of Science degree in Computer Networking in 2009. “I credit the hands-on technical undergraduate experience combined with the management acumen gained in EMBA program as a powerful combination that I am able to leverage everyday while leading international teams to implement complex programs.” DU acted as the catalyst for my career, helping me directly apply what I learned in the classroom to my personal and professional life,” stated Perez.

Ignacio leads global information system programs and projects for Whirlpool Corporation, the world’s largest home appliance manufacturer with $20B in revenue and 100,000 employees in 70 manufacturing and technology research centers throughout the world. Some of Ignacio’s largest programs at Whirlpool include transforming Whirlpool’s global e-commerce platform to the cloud for scalability and transforming legacy enterprise mainframe systems to cost effective commodity platforms.  Prior to joining Whirlpool, he led the creation of a regional Project Management Office (PMO) as Senior Project Manager for BlueWater Technologies; a company providing custom audio visual event and automation technology solutions. Prior to joining BlueWater Technologies, he led teams in the development, coordination and implementation of multiple cross-functional technology projects as an IT Project Manager with Davenport University. Previous roles at the University included technical project management and network engineering. Before joining the University, his background included manufacturing and skilled trades industry experiences.

Additionally, Ignacio serves part time as a Director of Operations in the Air National Guard, leading technology teams and projects in support of a global mission providing critical support to the United States Africa Command’s humanitarian and nation stabilization mission. As a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, he served as a Chief Information Officer (CIO) equivalent and Project Officer for an Army multi-billion dollar air/land/sea logistics unit and a transportation security unit in Southwest Asia.

His passion for education and mentoring lead him to begin teaching at DU as an adjunct faculty in the IT and Business fields, focusing on project management. He finds it very rewarding working with students and helping them apply what they learn to their real-life situations. Ignacio is also certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM). Additionally he maintains technical certifications including Cisco, CompTIA and ITIL.

Currently, Ignacio is serving on temporary assignment with the U.S. Air Force in Washington DC, selected to be part of a core team with an annual budget of over one billion dollars delivering a program of technology projects, and providing operational and management oversight to over 7,500 service members across the United States. His assignment has also included leading a team of 20 technology professionals from Michigan at Cyber Guard 2015, the nation’s largest cyber exercise sponsored by U.S. Cyber Command. The intense hands-on exercise securing and defending networks in real time focused on “whole of nation” solutions to protect, prevent, mitigate and recover from cyber-attacks against U.S. critical infrastructure.

Participants included representatives from critical infrastructure public and private sector partners comprising utilities from multiple states including Michigan, along with Canada and the United Kingdom. Other key participants included Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National Guard, and public and private research institutions to include Carnegie-Mellon and Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.

Ignacio is married with two boys and resides in Zeeland, MI.

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