Cisco CSC Designated VIP Program Launched

William Bell
Vice President, Solutions and Products

The Cisco Support Community, or NetPro as I know it, was established back in 2000. Over the past 10 years the community has grown to have over 505,000 members. These members span the globe and participate daily with a myriad of questions and experiences.  The level of expertise in the forum is quite high. Personally, I find that NetPro stands head and shoulders above other, similar technical forums. Further, it is the second resource I go to when I have an issue in the Cisco realm of technologies — right after I fulfill my obligation to RTFM!

The Designated VIP Program was launched by Cisco to recognize members who contribute to the community. The best way to find out about the CSC VIP Designation is to read a short FAQ that Cisco has compiled about the program.

This program launch has a special meaning for 3 folks in the NetCraftsmen family. Rick Burts, David Hailey, and myself were all selected to be part of the first group of CSC Designated VIPs. This is a pretty cool honor. There were only 26 people selected across all CSC and CLN communities and 3 of those people are NetCraftsmen. Hailey and I received honors in two categories. Rick, always trying one-up his colleagues, received honors in three categories.

For those keeping track, Hailey and I have been trying to catch Rick for more than a year (that is a joke of course, just look at Rick’s points!). We made some decent progress, but Rick doesn’t really appear to be slowing down. Next year, we may need to resort to alternative methods! We are both quite a bit larger than Rick, so maybe we can use that to our advantage. That’s right Mr. Burts, you better watch your back!

Anyway, I wanted to hang a sign in my little corner of cyberspace to congratulate Rick, Hailey, and the rest of the 26 members of the CSC VIP Program. Oh, and I am sure I can speak for my team and extend our gratitude to Dan Bruhn and his support team for all of the work they do in the community. These guys do an outstanding job.

The role call for the first group to receive CSC VIP Designation.

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Nick Kelly

Cybersecurity Engineer, Cisco

Nick has over 20 years of experience in Security Operations and Security Sales. He is an avid student of cybersecurity and regularly engages with the Infosec community at events like BSides, RVASec, Derbycon and more. The son of an FBI forensics director, Nick holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice and is one of Cisco’s Fire Jumper Elite members. When he’s not working, he writes cyberpunk and punches aliens on his Playstation.


Virgilio “BONG” dela Cruz Jr.

CCDP, CCNA V, CCNP, Cisco IPS Express Security for AM/EE
Field Solutions Architect, Tech Data

Virgilio “Bong” has sixteen years of professional experience in IT industry from academe, technical and customer support, pre-sales, post sales, project management, training and enablement. He has worked in Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) as a member of the WAN and LAN Switching team. Bong now works for Tech Data as the Field Solutions Architect with a focus on Cisco Security and holds a few Cisco certifications including Fire Jumper Elite.


John Cavanaugh

CCIE #1066, CCDE #20070002, CCAr
Chief Technology Officer, Practice Lead Security Services, NetCraftsmen

John is our CTO and the practice lead for a talented team of consultants focused on designing and delivering scalable and secure infrastructure solutions to customers across multiple industry verticals and technologies. Previously he has held several positions including Executive Director/Chief Architect for Global Network Services at JPMorgan Chase. In that capacity, he led a team managing network architecture and services.  Prior to his role at JPMorgan Chase, John was a Distinguished Engineer at Cisco working across a number of verticals including Higher Education, Finance, Retail, Government, and Health Care.

He is an expert in working with groups to identify business needs, and align technology strategies to enable business strategies, building in agility and scalability to allow for future changes. John is experienced in the architecture and design of highly available, secure, network infrastructure and data centers, and has worked on projects worldwide. He has worked in both the business and regulatory environments for the design and deployment of complex IT infrastructures.