TSYS Salutes Veterans for Military Appreciation Month

One flew combat missions in Desert Storm. Another was chief of staff at Fort Benning. One piloted helicopters in the U.S. Air Force. Another fought in combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What do they all have in common besides being military veterans? They all work here at TSYS.  

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TSYS Salutes Veterans for Military Appreciation Month

May 15, 2019

TSYS Salutes Veterans for Military Appreciation Month

One flew combat missions in Desert Storm. Another was chief of staff at Fort Benning. One piloted helicopters in the U.S. Air Force. Another fought in combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What do they all have in common besides being military veterans? They all work here at TSYS.

We are a global payments company that is passionate about military service members and their families. Throughout our history, we have been committed to hiring veterans, service members and their spouses.

"Military people have a core skillset that is difficult to train," said Stephen Bullard, director of talent acquisition at TSYS. "They know a lot about work ethic, responsibility, commitment and perseverance."

Bullard oversees the recruitment of military veterans at TSYS. He said many vets have unique skills that position them for jobs in areas such as information technology, cybersecurity, customer service, sales and relationship management.

Bullard also emphasized that TSYS fully supports our team members who may get called to active duty while on the job.

"We compensate and protect our team members who may be called up for service while working at TSYS," he said.

Our dedication to hiring veterans and supporting military families has not gone unnoticed. This month TSYS was named to the 2019 list of the Best for Vets Employers by Military Times. We were ranked No. 19 out of the top 100 employers recognized.

With May being Military Appreciation Month in the United States, we recently caught up with a few of our veterans and asked them about their military experiences, skills they learned while serving and how it relates to their current jobs at TSYS. Here's what they had to say.

Adapt, learn and execute

Jacqueline Purdy
Senior Vice President, Risk & Compliance

Based in San Antonio, Texas, Jackie served in the U.S. Air Force for 20 years, 12 on active duty and eight in the Reserve. She served in a variety of capacities, flying helicopters, working air traffic control and managing airfield operations.

Jacqueline Purdy on her first solo flight in the T-37.

"If I had to pick one thing from my military career that allowed me to be successful in my civilian career that would be the ability to adapt and learn," she said. "The ability to quickly adapt to the organizational culture and learn on the run has followed me to my civilian career."

At TSYS, Jackie leads risk and compliance for the chief information officer. She said managing operational risk is a skill that she developed in the Air Force. She also said serving in the military gave her a deep appreciation of people from multiple cultures working together toward a common goal.

"The military is an amazing melting pot of different races, genders and religions all operating in complete unison with one single purpose," said Jackie. "That aspect of my military experience has given me such a great appreciation and understanding of diversity and inclusion."

Focus under pressure

Walter Taylor
Chief Procurement Officer

Walter Taylor in uniform.Walter served in the Air Force for eight years. He was a pilot and flew combat missions in Desert Storm. He knows how to stay focused in pressure situations and values teamwork and respect for all.

Based in Charlotte, N.C., Walter said many of the skills that he developed in the Air Force have helped him in the business world. Skills such as leadership, communications and project coordination have benefited him at TSYS, where he serves as the chief procurement officer.

"My military experience was outstanding and TSYS is a very military-friendly company," he said. "We create opportunities for veterans and honor and recognize our veterans."

Empowering people

Patty Watson
SEVP and Chief Information Officer

Patty served nearly 10 years in the U.S. Air Force as executive staff officer, flight commander and director of operations. Her time in the military included stints in Los Angeles, Colorado Springs and at the Pentagon.

Just five years removed from college, Patty was serving in the Aeronautical Systems Division, managing people and directing multimillion dollar projects. The military taught her how to manage time wisely and how to lead people from different backgrounds and cultures.

Patty Watson being presented with an award during her time in the Air Force.

"I discovered in the military that my passion is about people," she said. "Whatever job you do as a leader, it's about empowering people and giving them coaching and feedback. Your job as a leader is to maximize the potential of your team."

Patty is proud of her Air Force experience and heritage, and believes TSYS is a very military friendly company.

"TSYS embraces and promotes diversity, and embracing military veterans, military families and reservists is part of what makes TSYS diverse," she said.

Understanding technology

Teresa Wright
Vice president, Global Technology Services

Teresa Wright in her United States Navy uniformTeresa served 20 years in the United States Navy as an aviation electrician and information systems technician. She worked on fighter jets and telecommunications systems. Her career in the Navy took her all over the world to places like Spain, Italy, Cuba and Africa.

"Serving in the U.S. Navy has been one of the best experiences of my life," said Teresa.

Her technology experience and background in the Navy has served her well at TSYS where she currently serves as a vice president in information security. Besides developing her technology skills, the Navy also taught her about structure, flexibility and teamwork.

When Teresa first joined TSYS she was still in the U.S. Navy Reserves and was required to serve one weekend a month and two weeks active duty each year.

"TSYS was very flexible and understanding of my need to serve as a weekend warrior," she said. "They valued what I brought to the workforce and were there to support me as needed."

Managing risk

Jack Marr
SVP and Chief Risk, Compliance and Privacy Officer

Jack Marr juggling during a patrol in Iraq.Jack retired from the U.S. Army in 2014 with 27 years of service. His last job in the Army was serving as the chief of staff at Fort Benning, where he oversaw the day-to-day operations of the civilian staff and managed a $20 million annual budget.

Before that he was an infantry officer and served in a variety of combat units around the world. Most notably he was deployed to Iraq twice and Afghanistan once.

Jack's experience in the Army has helped him a great deal at TSYS. He said there are many similarities between the Army and TSYS.

"Both organizations are very people-centric," he said. "And belonging to something bigger than ourselves is something with which every soldier and veteran is intimately familiar."

As the chief risk and compliance officer at TSYS, Jack has responsibilities related to risk management, business continuity, physical security, government relations and encryption services.

"Nearly every one of these functions has a direct connection to a military function with which I had some level of experience," he said.

Overcoming challenges

Lisa Sampson
Associate Director, Applications System Development

Lisa Sampson serving in the United States Army ReservesLisa has served in the United States Army Reserves for more than 19 years. She is currently the First Sergeant for the 803 Quartermaster Company in Opelika, Alabama. She has been deployed three times – twice to Kuwait (2001, 2003-2004) and once to Afghanistan (2014).

Lisa also served for three years as a Georgia Emergency Preparedness Liaison, coordinating Department of Defense support to the State of Georgia in a time of need.

"My military experience has taught me teamwork, loyalty, perseverance, discipline and leadership, all of which I try to apply to my role at TSYS," she said.

Overcoming adverse situations while deployed has taught her the importance of teamwork, communications and remaining mentally tough. Likewise, at TSYS, Lisa has worked on challenging projects that have required her to think outside the box, make smart decisions, communicate with team members, value the hard work and contributions of others, and always work toward a successful project outcome.

"TSYS has been extremely supportive of me when I have been called to service, both for deployments and for training," she said. "I am able to serve knowing that I have an employer who goes above and beyond to support me."

Optimizing resources

Dan Priban
Vice President, Risk and Compliance

Dan Priban in uniform.During his 20 years in the U.S. Army, Dan learned a lot about leadership and management and the difference between the two.

He was a Special Forces officer for much of his Army career and traveled around the world to countries like Germany, South Korea, New Zealand, Panama, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. As a Green Beret, one of the biggest skills he learned was how to organize and optimize limited resources to accomplish the mission.

That has served him well at TSYS where he is vice president of risk and compliance. The military also taught him how to prepare and execute a budget. "That skill has proved to be invaluable at TSYS," he said.

These team members are proof that TSYS values the talents and experiences of those obtained through military service. Throughout our history, we have 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 careers at TSYS, please visit our Careers page.