Honoring the Best and the Brightest: Military Appreciation at TSYS

Main Content

Honoring the Best and the Brightest: Military Appreciation at TSYS

May 24, 2018

Honoring the Best and the Brightest: Military Appreciation at TSYS

TSYS recognizes its former and current service members for Military Appreciation Month

TSYS video producer Jeremy Wisener had a calling to serve in the military. So last month he joined the Air National Guard, a military reserve force that's part of the U.S. Air Force.

He's committed to the Guard for the next eight years. He will serve one weekend each month and two weeks each year.

"I've been wanting to serve for a long time. I'm at a place now where I can," said Wisener.

Before joining, Wisener reached out to human resources at TSYS to learn about the company policy for team members who want to join a military branch. He was pleased to learn that TSYS fully supported his decision to serve his country.

"TSYS is a very military friendly company," said Jacqueline Watley-Love, an HR business partner at TSYS. "It's part of our culture – to support and hire applicants with a military background."

TSYS has, of course, always complied with the federal requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) of 1994, said Watley-Love. The law ensures that those who serve their country can retain their civilian employment and benefits, and can also seek employment free from discrimination.

But beyond the legal requirements, there’s also a sense of military pride woven throughout the company's people-centered, performance-driven culture. A 24-year HR veteran, Watley-Love said TSYS has always had a unique relationship with the military since Fort Benning, an Army installation, is located just south of the company's global headquarters in Columbus, Georgia.

"Fort Benning is the largest employer in the area," said Watley-Love. "A lot of soldiers get out of the Army and want to stay in the area. And we hire a lot of veterans here at TSYS."

With May being Military Appreciation Month, we recently caught up with four TSYS team members and asked them about their experiences serving in the Armed Forces. Read below for their stories.

Paul Rudesheim

Paul Rudesheim

Branch: U.S. Army
TSYS job title: Director, Issuer Solutions

Tell us about your military experience and background.

I was born and raised in the Republic of Panama, and went to school at Texas A&M on an ROTC scholarship. I was commissioned on May 5, 1983, from Texas A&M and began my career as an Air Defense Officer (Stinger Platoon leader) in Panama.

As a first lieutenant, I transferred to the Military Intelligence Corps and spent time as a battalion and brigade level S-2 in Louisiana and Georgia. I was fortunate to land a stint at the Infantry School at Fort Benning where I was able to instill the concept of intelligence into infantry soldiers. I commanded a company at the School of the Americas, now WHINSEC, at Benning and got to meet loads of people and travel to interesting places.

In 1994, I got off active duty and joined the Reserves. I was stationed in Atlanta at Fort McPherson in the Forces Command headquarters under the deputy chief of staff for intel (aka G-2). I retired on Sept. 3, 2003.

How has your military experience helped you in the business world?

It has been a tremendous help. You learn how to maximize your leadership skills early on, and manage resources, people, and budgets. Perspective-wise, there's not a whole lot that can be thrown at you in the business world that compares to having people's lives depend on decisions you might make. So the discipline and rigor of ensuring the mission is complete certainly helps. When I first joined TSYS, I worked on a lot of projects in Mexico and overseas in the UK, Brazil, Japan, and China before we had operational companies in those regions. I enjoyed the project style work with small teams because it was very similar to what I did in the Army.

Would you consider TSYS to be a military friendly company?

TSYS is very military friendly. Our leadership understands and supports the military. We have quite a few retirees, veterans, reservists, and National Guard team members. When I was in the Reserves (1994-2003), my leadership fully supported the time away from work to fulfill my service obligations. The military is such an integral part of Columbus and TSYS, as one of the major employers, understands that. Whether it's a service member having to perform their duties or family members having to make adjustments to work schedules because of a deployed service member, TSYS has always supported that.

Antonio Johnson

Antonio Johnson

Branch: U.S. Navy
TSYS job title: User Experience Architect Senior, Corporate Marketing & Culture

Tell us about your military experience and background.

I went into the military right out of high school. I worked with Aviation Ordnance (bombs, missiles, electronic countermeasures) and later worked more with aircraft avionics dealing specifically with aircraft weapon systems. My first five years consisted of three west Pacific cruises on the CVN 72 (USS Abraham Lincoln) aircraft carrier. During that time I was honored to be a part of supporting Operation Desert Shield/Storm, an evacuation after the Mount Pinatubo eruption in the Philippines, and air patrols over Mogadishu, Somalia in support of Operation Restore Hope. My last three years I served as an instructor and inspector to help prepare aircraft squadrons with battle readiness. I completed eight years of military service from November 1990 to October 1998.

How has your military experience helped you in the business world?

I was able to use the help offered by the military to get formally trained in a good civilian career field. The military most fundamentally helped me to understand more about the world in general first. The very first thing I learned is that the world does not revolve around me and that my survival depended on trusting others. It taught me discipline, how to work hard, how to deal with criticism and the importance of following rules. I learned how to work with people from different backgrounds. It also taught me how to think critically and how to use that to flourish in any situation. These are just a few of the things I was able to take from my military experience that I’ve been able to use in the business world.

Would you consider TSYS to be a military friendly company?

Absolutely! I have not worked at a company since the military before joining TSYS that expressed more pride in their military. I've seen service members recognized at shareholders' meetings for their military service and I can remember thinking to myself how unique that was. I can’t remember seeing anything close to that at any other company I've worked for.

There also appears to be a good number of vets, ex-military and reservists working at TSYS. I've even met people working here at TSYS who served with me on the West Coast. There are also people who were comfortable enough with the idea of joining while being employed at TSYS. I think that speaks to how military friendly the company is. Beyond that, TSYS has been recognized publicly numerous times for policies supporting vets and reservists.

Brian Germann

Brian Germann

Branch: U.S. Army
TSYS job title: Risk & Compliance Consultant, TSYS Managed Services

Tell us about your military experience and background.

I spent four years in the U.S. Army from 1993 to 1997 as a communications specialist. I was stationed at Fort Rucker, Alabama, Fort Polk, Louisiana, Camp Carroll, South Korea, and Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia.

How has your military experience helped you in the business world?

My military experience taught me confidence, responsibility, open-mindedness, and motivation. I was young and determined, but I did not have the structure that the military provided me. During my 20 years at TSYS, these traits have helped me stay focused on the end goal and open to the ideas and differing approaches of others in order to get the job done. During my tenure here, I have worked as a machine operator, trainer, sales analyst, instructional designer, and risk & compliance consultant.

Would you consider TSYS to be a military friendly company?

Yes. I came to TSYS immediately after leaving the military and was welcomed with open arms by my leadership.

David Galarza

David Galarza

Branch: U.S. Marines
TSYS job title: Client Service Specialist, Client Relations

Tell us about your military experience and background.

I am a true military brat. I was actually born in Seoul, South Korea, because that is where my parents were stationed. We actually moved every two to three years so we managed to travel across the globe.

After high school, I joined the United States Marine Corps. I went to boot camp in Parris Island, South Carolina, for the full 13-week experience. The drive and dedication from boot camp continued and on my one-year anniversary I was promoted to a Non-Commissioned Office (NCO). Two years later, again on my anniversary, I was promoted to Sergeant.

In the Marines, we are all infantry men first so after boot camp I attended Marine Combat Training at Camp Geiger, North Carolina for four weeks. I deployed to Camp Fallujah, Iraq in 2005 during the Iraq War which carried over into 2006. My primary job consisted of coordinating and transporting personnel and mission critical supplies, all while conducting joint tactical operations with different task forces we deployed with.

Aside from my deployment, my time was spent in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, coupled with some training at 29 Palms, California. I later became an instructor and conducted combat vehicle courses preparing Marines for numerous combat scenarios that could be experienced on their upcoming deployments.

How has your military experience helped you in the business world?

Growing up I was always the shy kid. The Marines really helped me build confidence and break out of that shell. Equally key was understanding the importance of teamwork and being on the same page with everyone. One will not conquer all so we all have to work together. Today I am in Client Relations managing relationships between TSYS and numerous clients we service. I have the confidence to present to mixed audiences in business reviews as well as other collaborative meetings. I can also work with anyone while encouraging all to work together to find solutions to service our clients as well as support our organization by meeting or exceeding our business goals. 

Would you consider TSYS to be a military friendly company?

Yes, I have met a number of military veterans who have been given an opportunity to transition from military to civilian life through TSYS. Military leadership experience comes in handy and it seems it is valued. Plus we have fun stories to share!

These team members are living proof that TSYS values the experiences provided by those who have served in the military. During our 35-year history, TSYS has always supported the men and women who serve their countries in the Armed Forces.

If you are a former or current military service member, we may have an opportunity for you at TSYS. For more information on career opportunities at TSYS, please visit our Careers page.