Intelligent CIO North America Issue 31 - Page 79

Travis Johnston , Director , Market Strategy , Folio Photonics
On the lighter side of things , we ask the industry experts what makes them tick . . . .

. . . GET TO KNOW . . .

Travis Johnston , Director , Market Strategy , Folio Photonics

wWhat would you describe as your most memorable achievement ?

From a career perspective , securing a part-time / internship position with Folio Photonics while I was still in school at Case Western Reserve University was a coup ; and then upon graduation having them offer me a full-time position is an achievement of which I am quite proud . Since joining Folio Photonics , my most memorable achievement was successfully
securing a spot for Folio to present / pitch at Data Center World ’ s Startup Competition in 2021 , and then subsequently winning and being named the ‘ Most Disruptive Technology ’.
The presentation and award win provided an enviable opportunity to begin to introduce Folio Photonics to the world and explain how it will re-energize data storage media innovation with the first-ever enterprisescale , immutable active archive solution that delivers breakthrough cost , margin and sustainability benefits .
In August 2022 , I played a key role in Folio Photonics ’ official public debut , which was met with a tremendous response by the industry analyst and media community , and allowed us to elaborate on how by leveraging game-changing advancements in materials science to create high capacity optical storage write / read capabilities , Folio ’ s technology overcomes historical optical constraints to reshape the trajectory of archive storage . Ideal for data center and hyperscale customers , Folio ’ s next-generation data storage media radically reduces upfront cost and TCO while making data archives active , cybersecure and sustainable .
What first made you think of a career in technology ?
When I was at Case Western Reserve University ( CWRU ) many of my classmates were working towards careers as investment bankers , financial analysts , corporate marketers and the like . However , for me , being at CWRU – one of the foremost research universities in the world – provided me with the chance to be exposed to unconventional creativity and innovation .
CWRU nourished my curiosity and passion for technology . And it is by the way , where I also met Folio Photonics ’ Founder and Chief Innovation Officer , Dr Kenneth D . Singer , Ambrose Swasey Professor of Physics and Professor of Macromolecular Science and Engineering at Case Western Reserve University . The rest , as they say , is history .
What style of management philosophy do you employ with your current position ?
I lean towards what Rensis Likert labeled : Participative – which is described by ManagementStudyGuide . com as : Responsibility for achieving the organizational goals is widespread throughout the organizational hierarchy . There is a high level of confidence that the manager has in his or her subordinates . There is a high level of teamwork , communication , and participation . Here at Folio , I really like that all levels work together to achieve the larger goal of making our technology come to life .
What do you think is the current hot technology talking point ?
One thing that is really hot in tech today is anything aimed at reducing CAPEX and OPEX .
For example , sustainability has become a very hot topic across the board thanks to activists like Greta Thunberg who has worked tirelessly to educate and push legislation aimed at halting the use of harmful processes and materials , in order to save and even repair our global environment .
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