Get to know the faces that are working hard behind the scenes to unleash your data’s potential.
This month for our Face Behind the Data profile series, we are excited to introduce, Brian Hribek, Data Science Administrator. Brian is one of the masterminds behind many of our software applications.
Brian enjoys bringing concepts to life that will provide the best solutions to our customers. We are excited he could contribute his experience to Face Behind the Data, a series of profiles that feature the hard-working employees behind the solutions and services at Katalyst.
What is your educational and work experience background?
I studied Nuclear Science at Naval Nuclear Power school and became a Nuclear Machinist’s Mate. After school, I served on aircraft carriers, most notably, the USS Enterprise (CVN-65). After my tenure in the Navy, I began working for Katalyst in 2008.
I started my career at Katalyst as a computer operator and moved on to supervisor of the Logistics department. Later, I joined the Indexing/QC group as supervisor and manager. Finally, I joined the Data Science team. Programming, databases, and code have always been a part of my life since I was a kid and I’m really enjoying my current role.
What are some of the highlights of your career?
While serving in the Navy, the most memorable experience was 9/11 on the USS Enterprise while in the Persian Gulf. Our ship was the first to respond without orders. It was a surreal experience. Apart from that, docking and visiting so many different ports and countries was something I’ll treasure forever. Some of my favorite places visited were Greece, Sicily, Italy, Portugal, and Dubai.
My Katalyst career highlights would be developing the Indexing/QC tools that are still used today (KIT/iQC). More recently, working with my Data Science team to develop and release K360 and Chain of Custody data models/reports.
Did you grow up wanting to be a data manager?
I have always liked data. I started programming and working with databases when I was 13 years old. Writing code and working with databases has always been a part of my life. The feeling of building something from nothing and seeing people use what you have created is so rewarding.
How did you get here?
After the Navy, I was looking for a job in the nuclear field or some other type of power plant, but it really wasn’t something I wanted to do the rest of my life. It so happens that I ran into Michael Wilhite, GIS Manager of Katalyst, and a former high school friend who told me about the company, so I decided to apply.
What are some big lessons learned and/or challenges faced along the way?
I want to learn everything which can become overwhelming, but if you break it into parts, it becomes more manageable.
What advice do you have for people beginning their career?
Always be learning. Always keep up with technology. Always ask questions. Learn from your peers.
Are there any organizations or volunteer groups that you are passionate about?
The organizations I am passionate about would be:
Doctors Without Borders, Habitat for Humanity, and volunteering at soup kitchens.
What are some of your favorite things to do and/ or places to visit outside of work?
Anything in or on the water. I enjoy boating, kayaking, fishing, floating
the river, or just splashing around at the beach. I’ve also always been
into hot hatches, which are turbo-charged hatchbacks. Lastly, I love to
relax with my friends and play board games or video games.