Hello all, my name is Gretchen, and I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, home of the 6 Super-Bowl-ring owning Pittsburgh Steelers. (Just had to share my Pittsburgh pride!) Besides Pittsburgh, I have also lived in Philadelphia, Atlanta, New York City, and the tiny village of Treibach, Austria. Now I live in Houston, Texas where I work in SAP security. I am a longtime ASUG volunteer, currently the Security SIG Chair, and an SAP Mentor. In my spare time, I volunteer at the City of Houston's animal shelter BARC, where I enjoy brushing the furriest, most matted and bedraggled dogs to make them handsome for prospective adopters.
Here I am on the "rails to trails" hike and bike trail near our home in the Houston Heights with our dogs Bob and Sandy, both of whom we adopted from BARC. Downtown Houston is about 2 miles down the trail in the background of the photo.
A fun fact that you may not know about me is that, although I did not do sports as a child, I now enjoy adventures and sports, particularly when I travel. Among my adventures, I have:
- Done both cross country and downhill skiing in Colorado, California, and Austria
- Gone sea kayaking in the Pacific and canoeing in Belize
- Gone inline skating along Copacabana and Ipanema beaches, along the North Sea and the South China Sea, in Dubai and London, in New York's Central Park and other US cities too numerous to recall
- Completed several bicycle tours in California, finishing one of them with riding the bike across the Golden Gate Bridge (I highly recommend it!)
- Gone zip lining and successfully completed a Challenge Course in Antiqua
- Climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge along with my ASUG volunteer and SAP Mentor colleague Karin Tillotson (If you get the chance, do it!)
What need does my SAP solution meet? I spend a lot of time in SAP GRC, and the compliance needs it meets are many and varied. I especially enjoyed working on GRC 10.0 projects and look forward to the GRC upgrade project at my current employer.
What do I enjoy most in my work and why? I enjoy the variety of working in SAP security and compliance to meet the needs of our business users. My current position is my third SAP job, since starting in SAP security in 1997. The SAP landscape is ever evolving and always presenting new security and compliance challenges.
The person who influenced me the most in my career was the manager who invited me to join the SAP implementation project back in 1996. He gave me the choice of staying in my comfort zone of being a financial analyst in the IT department, or I could take the risk of joining the SAP project which, if it failed, meant I could be out of a job in 18 months. I took the leap of faith that getting in on the ground floor with the SAP team would be the wiser choice; it was the biggest and best decision I have made in my career. It was definitely one of those "Road Not Taken" moments, and I'll be forever thankful I made the right choice.
I am blogging it forward to Kristen Scheffler and Anita Yuen and inviting them to answer these questions:
- What do you enjoy most in your work and why?
- If you were not in your current position, what/where would you be and why?
- Name the person who affected you most in your career/ way of thinking and why