We’re very excited about the upcoming 2019 IT Blog Awards, and we hope you feel the same.  Before this year’s awards officially kicks off, we’re looking for feedback from our community on what you’d like to see as categories and for prizes.  If you haven’t yet, please let us know your thoughts in this short survey.  This program is meant for you, our community of technical bloggers, so help us shape what’s to come.

As you prepare for the 2019 IT Blog Awards, you might be wondering about last year’s winners. We’ve previously interviewed Daniel Dib (Most Inspirational), Giuliano Barros (Best Group Blog), and Chris Bradshaw (Best Analysis).  Now it’s time to get to know Deirra Footman, winner of the Best Cert Study Journey for the 2018 IT Blog Awards.  Learn where she started, what fuels her and how she ensures she’s sharing the best insights for her readers.

How did you start your career in tech?  What has been your journey?

Growing up, I always had an interest in taking things apart to figure out how they work. I had a passion for science and technology. When I started high School, I enrolled in the Cisco Network Academy. In my senior year I was offered an internship at my school district’s headquarters and was hired on as a contractor. As I earned more certifications and completed projects, I was eventually promoted to a full-time employee.

How did you get into blogging?

I’ve always had a passion for writing and had blogged on & off for a few years. CCIE By 30 was my way of combining my love of tech and writing. I started out sharing study tips then notes on my certification studies and work projects.

What motivates you as a blogger?

I’m passionate about giving others the resources they need to succeed in the tech industry. I hope that by sharing my experience, I make things a little easier for those just starting out. Also, being a black woman in the field, I understand how important it is to be a representative for those looking for someone who looks like them.

What advice can you give to anyone interested in starting their own blog?

Just do it! Don’t get caught up in imposter syndrome. We are all on a journey and each of our perspectives are important.

As a winner in the Best Cert Study Journey category, how do you identify the most practical insights for your readers?

I’m constantly connecting with the tech community on Twitter and various groups and seeing what people are asking. I also draw inspiration from my personal struggles when I’m studying or working on a project. When creating content, I try to answer questions I have.

If you were a networking product or solution, what would it be and why?

I’d be a router, connecting people to resources.

What did you think?  Add a comment below.


Want to receive updates on the 2019 IT Blog Awards?

Send an email to it-blog-awards@cisco.com


Amilee San Juan

Marketing Program Manager

Product & Solutions Marketing