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EdgeConneX Salutes 2022: Steve Lorenzo

November 2, 2022

What is EdgeConneX Salutes 2022?

As part of our continuing mission of honoring and recognizing our amazing veteran employees, EdgeConneX, in partnership with Salute Mission Critical, launched EdgeConneX Salutes 2022. As a longtime partner of EdgeConneX, Salute uniquely addresses our critical infrastructure facility management needs. Salute’s skilled veteran labor force works alongside our EdgeConneX teams, which include dedicated and hard-working veterans like Steve Lorenzo. We are proud to share Steve’s experience with you. Please read his Q&A below to learn more.

Steve Lorenzo, Director of Solutions Architecture at EdgeConneX and an Air Force veteran, was interviewed to learn more about his background and his experience in transitioning into a civilian role within the data center industry. Steve also shared what inspires him the most with us.

Check out Steve’s Top Tips for veterans in his video chat with Dave Foss, SVP of Edge Data Center Operations at EdgeConneX.


What are your job responsibilities now?

My official job title is Director of Solutions Architecture; however, I refer to the position as a detective. My role involves being a liaison between our engineering groups and our customers. I learn what the pain points are for our customers and find solutions on how we can avoid them in the future. Finding the right solutions takes someone who can dig deep and gather the requirements for what the customer needs. It’s also about looking out for their future and taking their current platform and creating a plan to enhance it for future growth.

What geo are you in now?

McKinney, Texas

Tell me about your background/why did you enter the military?

My Dad was in the Air Force. I admired him and all of his accomplishments. It was always interesting to me and I knew it was something that I might want to also pursue. Therefore, at the young age of only 18, I decided to do just that and enlist in the Air Force with the end goal in mind of working for the FBI afterward.

How did the military prepare you for the job/role/career you are in now?

In the military, you must be prepared at all times, be flexible and able to adjust and adapt. You also understand that if you’re told to do something, you do it while being agile. One of the biggest things the military provided me that has helped me in my career is the ability and need to be able to trust the people around you to get the job done. This is important not only in the data center industry but truly in any occupation. To be able to know your team is accountable and that you can count on them and vice versa is crucial to the success of yourself, your team, and the company you work for.

What was your role/responsibility in the military?

I was in the Air Force for almost 10 years, from 1990-1999. My primary job title was Combat Communications Computer Systems. My first assignment strangely enough was an Army installation at Camp Humphreys Korea. Following that, I was transferred to a highly deployable unit and as the name suggested. I was deployed for most of the time there, including time spent in Desert Storm. It was an experience that I will never forget.

Tell us a story from your military service. What did you learn from that experience?

Overall, it was a great experience. I was able to meet and get to know a lot of people and was able to travel to places that were a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Being in the military led me to the turning point in my career, (although I perhaps didn’t realize it at the time). I was reassigned to the White House Communications Agency (WHCA), where my main role was to support the office of the President. It was a rigorous interview process and I wasn’t sure if I would be selected. I was residing in Georgia at the time, and received the news that they wanted me to come to work for them in Washington, D.C. It was a turning point for me in that I wasn’t looking to leave Georgia. However, I am grateful it worked out the way it did.

I ended up working for the Clinton administration and traveled with the President everywhere. There was an incident in 1997 while deployed to Hobe Sound, FL. President Clinton was on a trip for a 2-day golf tournament sponsored by Greg Norman where the president was also staying on the Norman estate. I love golf so this was one of my favorite trips. Late into the evening, President Clinton and Norman finished their chat and while the President was headed to his cottage, he fell on the steps and twisted his knee. It’s a pretty big deal when the President of the United States has to be transported to the hospital via ambulance.  We immediately enacted our emergency action plan (EAP), this was the first time it had been enacted since the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan in 1981. During pre-planning for this trip, we determined a helicopter would be the mode of travel from the compound to the hospital, in the event of a medical emergency. I was the non-commissioned officer in charge of the motorcade secure communications van that evening. Things unraveled quickly after the fall and we decided that using a small package motorcade versus a helo would be more advantageous. We were the lead vehicle/escort to the hospital, which is very unusual for motorcade alignment. I spent the rest of that morning in the room with the President ensuring he had all the communications necessary to conduct presidential business. It was memorable, to say the least.

 How was your experience transitioning from military to civilian workplace?

You quickly realize the sense of urgency isn’t the same in civilian life as it was in the military. The first company I worked for after leaving the military was in the midst of unfortunate circumstances. While there, talks of layoffs were constant. You started to feel that no matter how well you did, you were just a number. It was a huge change for me at first, since in the military, I was used to loyalty to one another, no matter what.

Was there anything that would have made that transition better, easier?

The military did a great job of helping me transition from military to civilian life in regards to the capabilities and knowledge I gained while in the military. It was fairly easy for me to find a path that was right for me, but I know that for some people it is difficult.

One thing that I would recommend to others who are getting ready to go from the military to a civilian role is you should not forget that you have a network of friends you know from being in the military who perhaps have already transitioned into civilian life and can help guide you and support you.

Explain the transition from the military to working at EdgeConneX.

I’m a very loyal person by nature and I value relationships. My first opportunity post-military was at MCI WorldCom, shortly after that Verizon purchased MCI and after that our business unit was sold to IBM, then spun off to Kyndryl. The more times I was sold or spun off, the farther and farther I was from the customer direct experience. I was fortunate enough to meet a lot of good people along the way, which ultimately led me to EdgeConneX, where I’m back where I wanted to be – building relationships and hope to be here for many more years. You just never know who you might run into!

What would you like to tell others that are thinking about a career in the data center industry?

It is extremely important to get certified in sought-out-after certifications, such as cloud and data center. Making sure you stay on top of the latest trends when it comes to certifications is vital – in addition to your degree – as companies are going to want to know what you specialize in and what you can offer. To grow within the data center industry, I would recommend creating a plan to continue pursuing education within the field of business. Having a business component to your resume will help you be able to climb the corporate ladder.

 What would you like to tell people that are thinking about working for EdgeConneX?

It is a great place for those just leaving college, mid-career or even twilight years. You truly get to know each other within the company and are treated as family. The comradery at EdgeConneX is second to none, which is extremely important to me since the military was a place of enormous comradery. EdgeConneX is also a perfect company to work for people of all ages.

What does EdgeConneX culture of Customers, People, Planet mean to you?

One of the strongest factors for what it means to me is the fact that all people should be treated the same. When you work for EdgeConneX, you can take great pride in knowing that you are taking care of people and that it is not just something that is talked about, it is a mission of EdgeConneX. We need to take care of people and we must leave this planet better than we found it!

What are your hobbies/interests?

I’m a huge sports fan! I’m a long-tenured baseball coach. I not only enjoy the sports aspect of it, but I am happy to know that perhaps I am making an impact on their lives outside sports. I also love to fish, hunt and golf in my spare time, which doesn’t equate to much. Most importantly, I love spending time with my family. My family is everything to me!

What inspires you the most?

Hands down my wife inspires me the most. She is by far the brains in our household and is always wanting to learn and grow. It is inspiring. She is constantly pushing me professionally and to embrace all that I have to offer.  I wake up every morning and enjoy what I do. Not everyone can say that.

How can our readers follow you online?

Readers can follow me on LinkedIn.

Check out Steve’s Top Tips for veterans in his video chat with Dave Foss, SVP of Edge Data Center Operations at EdgeConneX.


Keep an eye on EdgeConneX career openings HERE.  

If you are a veteran or military spouse looking for an exciting career in a growing industry, please contact Salute Mission Critical. The team can help train and put you on the path to success.