What do you do for work and what do you love about it and what is most challenging?
Zenita: I am Director, Marketing & Business Development for SCTE*ISBE (Society Cable Telecommunications Engineers and its global arm, the International Society of Broadband Experts). I’m responsible for implementing and helping to shape marketing communications strategy for SCTE*ISBE. As someone who has dedicated my whole career to cable, here’s why I love what I do: I get to work with every segment of the industry to build and communicate the value of the SCTE*ISBE brand. After many years of experiencing the benefits of SCTE*ISBE as a vendor, it’s energizing to be in the thick ofplanning and program execution; support for SCTE*ISBE ‘s flagship events (including the industry’s largest North American tradeshow, SCTE*ISBE Cable-Tec Expo®); the industry’s only ANSI-approved standards program; and training and SCTE Foundation programs that are helping to advance the careers of current and next-generation cable technical professionals.
How have other women inspired you or helped shape your career?
Zenita: My Mother first and foremost encouraged me to believe there wasn’t anything I couldn’t do. If I had a new opportunity or idea that I wanted to discuss with my management, I would discuss it with her first. Even if the idea might have sounded far-fetched and unobtainable to management, I was fully prepared for their questions, because my Mom had already put me through my paces. While Mom never worked in our industry, her open mind, diversity of thought and ability to ask the right questions would make me think about all of the issues I could encounter. As for women in the industry, I was extremely fortunate during the second half of my career to have very strong, very smart women who saw my potential and who wanted to help me find my voice. Their teaching and mentoring helped me to grow my skills.
What is your favorite TV show and/or movie?
Zenita: TV Show: Ray Donovan. Movie: Heaven Can Wait (1943 version)
What is something that most people don’t know about you?
Zenita: I love Wayne Newton, don’t judge.
What’s your role with WICT? What did you enjoy most about that role?
Zenita: Vice President, WICT Philadelphia. It is rewarding to ride shot gun with a dynamic chapter president and team who are truly dedicated to our mission, who want to make a difference in the lives of our members and who are bringing value to our sponsors by involving them directly in WICT Philadelphia causes.
We’re committed to helping create a new generation of leaders – and to open doors in our industry — by supporting Girls Inc. of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, an organization that inspires all girls to be strong, smart and bold through direct service and advocacy. Girls Inc. develops the whole girl, equips them to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers and to grow up healthy, educated, and independent.
Our primary fundraiser, the WICT Philly Gives Back event, most recently raised $15,000 to support Girls Inc. programs, but our support doesn’t stop there. We also have several WICT Philly board members on the board of Girls Inc. of Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, and we are hosting a WICT Camp this summer. During the week of July 31-August 4, three WICT Philly sponsors — ARRIS, Comcast and Partners Consulting — will be hosting day-long camps, including “Career Exploration Days” that will provide girls aged 11-14 with real world experience interacting and networking.
Why do you think WICT is important?
Zenita: To steal a quote from a past colleague in our industry, “we still have work to do.” There is still a huge gender gap with women in tech and WICT plays a key role in keeping the situation top of mind across the industry and in providing the right programs and training that can fill the gap.