Editor’s note: This week, ISACA Now’s “Faces of ISACA” series is highlighting female members who have made outstanding contributions to the technology workforce leading up to International Women’s Day on 8 March. Today, we highlight Gabriela Reynaga, CEO of Holistics GRC and president of ISACA’s Guadalajara, Mexico chapter.
Join @isacanews, @justinembone @observacious & @shyama_rose for an International Women’s Day Twitter Chat on 8 March, 1-2 PM EST. Have your questions and comments ready. Use #ISACAChat and #IWD2018 to be a part of the live conversation.
Gabriela Reynaga acknowledges that abandoning a safer career path to start her own business was a decision that came with a fair amount of anxiety.
Yet, after years of slower career advancement than she would have liked, Reynaga decided it was time to take a chance.
“When you realize that you’re giving all your time, all your dedication, and you’re not reaching the positions that you would like to have, it was like ‘OK, no, no, no, this is not working,’” Reynaga said. “I can do it, for sure. There’s no limit. Being a woman is not a handicap to achieve my goals, so I decided, I can do it.”
Last fall, Reynaga launched Holistics GRC, reflecting Reynaga’s governance, risk and compliance expertise, rather than standing for “Gabriela Reynaga’s Company,” as friends teased.
Still, the concept stands. It is Reynaga’s company, and she is proud of the work Holistics GRC has done in providing audit and consulting services with a holistic approach, in addition to carrying out risk assessments and addressing the convergence of technology and operations processes.
Reynaga, president of ISACA’s Guadalajara, Mexico chapter, brings extensive industry experience to her new venture. She spent 10 years with Deloitte, working in Mexico and Canada, and she also has worked in business risk services for Salles Sainz Grant Thornton, S.C., in addition to taking on a variety of consulting roles.
Reynaga started professionally as a financial auditor before becoming interested in the connections between information technology and audit. She said ISACA played a big part in her professional evolution; Reynaga has ISACA’s CISA and CRISC certifications and also is a COBIT 5 accredited trainer.
“I realized, OK, I’m not alone,” Reynaga said of becoming involved with ISACA. “There is a lot of information available.”
Reynaga acknowledges many challenges ahead as she attempts to grow Holistics GRC, which currently has a handful of employees, but she is exhilarated by the opportunity, and credits her father for encouraging her to be bold in pursuit of her goals.
“This is my dream,” Reynaga said of starting her own company. “This is my passion.”
As if growing her business isn’t enough of a project, Reynaga also is in the midst of writing a book that she said will explore risk while drawing upon her personal life experiences. Providing guidance to colleagues – whether in the form of a book, by speaking at ISACA events or in collaborative settings – fits with Reynaga’s inclination to share her knowledge with others.
“I have a lot of things to improve, like language, my English, but I’m willing to learn every day,” Reynaga said. “I know I don’t know everything, but every day I learn something, and I love it. And it wouldn’t be useful to learn a lot without sharing that knowledge with someone else, so I like to share the knowledge.”