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Adaptation Is The Theme of My Life

With Kathy David

 Published on: Sep 7, 2018

Life throws us in a lot of unpredictable situations. One day we live in the highest of highs and the next, we find ourselves in the low. CEO of IT TechPros Inc. Kathy David knows all the struggles and challenges that come with coping too well. Not a stranger to moving places, Kathy David inspires many people of her very character to be able to adapt to changes, be that in her environment or her career. Growing up in the Philippines then moving to the United States, she has evolved into a person who never takes every opportunity to learn for granted. She tries to adapt and fit in and finds the courage to be an individual that truly expresses her unique self. Now she is a powerful entrepreneur who has found her identity and passion, which is to create an impact to other business owners.

The Theme of My Life: Adaptation with Kathy David

Life is unpredictable and it can often feel impossible to find a balance between what you want and what you have. Perhaps you are feeling trapped or constrained because of your cultural boundaries. Whatever the case, I’m glad you’re here with me. Our guests all have similar backgrounds and traits like me. They have found a way to create a life which gives them the freedom, power and choice to be who they want to be while still respecting their culture. Our guest now is no different.

Kathy David is the President and CEO of IT TechPros, Inc., a company specializing in providing managed IT, hosted cloud services, IT consulting and cybersecurity services. Kathy and her company had been recognized by and featured on the Women’s Business Enterprise Council-West, WBEUSA Magazine, Asian Media and many more. Kathy is a small business leader, a professional speaker, a trainer, a renowned author, as well as an authority in the field of small business technology. Please join me and welcome, Kathy David.

Thank you for having me.

I’m glad that you are here. Take us back to the time when you were living in the Philippines. How old were you?

I’m originally from the Philippines. I was born there. I am from the region you would call the Visayas, the island is called Cebu. I was born there and spent the first eleven years of my life living between Cebu City and Manila. That’s where I’m originally from.

What was your life like, do you remember?

I’m the second child, there are two of us. My mom is a single mom. Growing up, I had never met my father. My mom took care of me and my sister. Although she was a single mom back then in the Philippines, she did a pretty great job in raising two daughters by herself. What I remember growing up is that my mom was still fairly young in her twenties and she did work. There were times where I didn’t spend a lot of time with her. My memories as a child, to be honest, the first five years was pretty normal. I was a very active kid. I loved playing. One of the turning points in my life was probably when I was in first grade. I remember my mom dropping me off to school, giving me a big hug and leaving like she did with any normal day. What was different about that day is I never saw her again. Later on, I found out that she had moved to the United States and had left me and my older sister behind. As a child, you don’t question these things but what I just know is that my mom had left and in a few years, we’ll be all reunited and connected again.

That was a part of my life where the series of events started to change and open up my eyes about life growing up. During that time, we lived with family members. They moved into our house in Manila. Basically, a household of my mom, me, my sister and a few helpers turned to have added two adults and five kids. It ended up to be seven kids in a household and it was always loud and there were a lot of activities. That was definitely a shift for me in adapting to the people who are now living in our house. My uncle and aunt took care of us while my mom moved to the United States.

Adapt To Changes: Life is unpredictable and it can often feel impossible to find a balance between what you want and what you have.

During that time, what had happened is there were some issues with the family keeping the financial resources. The financial resources were not managed well. I remember maybe a year or two after they moved into our house, our electricity got turned off, our water got turned off. There was barely enough food to feed seven children. There was enough money to pay for school tuition but not enough books to buy. I was one of the kids in the family that had one or two books and I should have had five to seven books for school. Imagine being in a house where you had running water and electricity to now not having water and electricity. I remember weekends where my cousins and I would walk two or three, four or five miles to go to a well with buckets. Walking and filling up our buckets with water and then walking it back home and filling up a big container so we can have the water supply for the week.

At night where we used to have a radio and watch a little bit of TV, and this was in the early ‘80s, now not having electricity. We were just sitting around the table with a candlelight and eating dinner and then it will be lights out a little bit after that. That was definitely a drastic change from how I experienced the first five, six years of my life and then transitioning to barely making ends meet. As far as the details of what happened, I don’t know. I was still too young. I was never really questioning why things were changing. The way that I can describe it is that we were middle class with my first six years of my life. When my mom left to go to the United States, two to three years, we were living like poor people.

We lived in a gated community and we were the one household that didn’t have electricity and lights. It was embarrassing as a child. Anyway, as a child, there’s not much that you can say. The way that impacted me in a negative way, going to school in a third world country, I went to a private Catholic school. There was enough money to pay for tuition but not enough money to pay for all of my books. There were some classes where I couldn’t participate because I didn’t have my books. This is just the way the culture is sometimes very disciplinarian and very authoritative in the approach in how they teach children. Instead of me being able to share with a classmate, I wasn’t allowed to participate. I was told to go and wait outside the classroom until the class was over, feeling embarrassed and stupid that I didn’t have my books. There was no way for me to explain that to my teacher as a seven or eight-year-old girl.

There was even one time where a teacher told me that I needed to scrub the entire classroom floor. I did that for, I don’t know how many weeks, because she was upset I didn’t have my workbook. As a child, I don’t know what to do but I just did it. There were classes I was able to participate but I remember two or three classes where instead of being able to participate and be in a supportive, loving environment, I got punished for something I had no control over. There were a lot of memories during those periods in school where I was wandering around the school grounds until I can get to the classes where I had books. That was a unique and interesting experience for me. That definitely impacted my self-esteem as a child. That also made me feel like I wasn’t good enough and intelligent to participate and learn the things I needed to learn. Those were some critical years as a child for me to participate in a loving and supportive environment in school. That was maybe two to three years of my memory after my mom left to go to the United States.

One day, my aunt who is my mom’s older sister, just came to Manila and took me and my sister. Again, you don’t question anything. I remember she was saying, “We’re packing all of our stuff. You’re taking all of your stuff. We’re flying to Cebu,” where I’m originally from, that’s where I was born. We just went with my aunt, took an hour and a half plane ride from Manila to Cebu and we lived with my aunt. The cool experience about this is my aunt is a very well-off person through marriage. Until to this day she’s still there along with her family. She married a very successful and wealthy businessman. She owned a lot of properties in Cebu, which came from old money. They owned malls, they owned real estate businesses. They had several manufacturing plants. They were even in the prawn business, the restaurant business and the jewelry business.

I got to live in a mansion with her in Cebu where we had help, drivers and cooks. There was nothing we needed to do but show up at the table. We had good food and we were served. We didn’t have to do laundry, any of that stuff. I didn’t have to walk two, three, four, five miles to get water. We had hot water in our house, which was rare back in the early ‘80s in the Philippines to have hot water in your house. The contrast of living the first six years of my life as you would consider middle-class in the Philippines, then experiencing three years of poverty and being poor. Then now being swept away and live for a number of years in Cebu where we have experienced the lifestyle of the rich. It was such a different experience.

What I enjoyed during my time living with my aunt, by that time I was in fourth grade and fifth grade when I lived in Cebu. After school, we would be picked up by our drivers. Then we would either be dropped off at one of her businesses, whether it’s the restaurant or the manufacturing plant to wait for my uncle to be done with work so he can then gather up all the kids and then drive home. I got exposed to business. I got exposed to that life. At that time, I didn’t think of it. I do remember being bored at some point and I was like, “I can’t sit here any longer. I want to go home.” The majority of our weekdays was being able to spend time with my aunt or my uncle in one of their businesses and seeing how to run a restaurant, how to run a manufacturing plant, how to run a retail store. That opened up my eyes to possibilities.

In 1989 was when we got the news, just like how I’ve experienced I had no say to what was going to happen in my life. My aunt said, “You’re going to the United States, you’re going to be with your mom.” By that time, I was maybe eleven and a half years old and I thought and felt settled in Cebu being with her. I loved every moment of living in Cebu because one of my fondest memories while living there is going to the beach every weekend. We were out at the beach. We stayed at a beach house and took the boat out. We’d spent hours in the ocean swimming. Those are my fondest memories of living in Cebu. For my life to change and we had to leave and take a plane ride, it was scary because it was just me and my sister to fly from Cebu City to San Francisco. Thinking to myself, I didn’t want to go quite frankly. It was hard for me to pick my life up again and have to start all over. Even in that time, that eleven and a half years old, I did move and I had this switch in lifestyle. I went to at least maybe three to four different schools. There are definitely a lot of changes. I compared my life, the first eleven and a half years, as a life of a military child but I’m not in the military. Hearing people who were in the military, they share those same experiences where you’re moving constantly and you can’t plant and grow your roots.

In February 1989, it was a month before I turned twelve, we went to San Francisco and I had to re-acquaint myself. Although I was very happy to see and be with my mom, it was one of those things where pretty much at that time, half of my life, I didn’t spend a whole lot of time with her. I also had to get to know my mom. I love her. She’s a hardworking woman. She had to do what she needed to in order to provide for me and my sister. We moved to San Francisco and at that time she was married to my stepdad. We lived in the city. We lived in 16th in Jay Street, which was a prime location in San Francisco. It was two blocks away from Castro, a few blocks walk to the famous Dolores Park. You can walk two, three long blocks and you’re on Market Street. You can take the Muni and within fifteen, twenty minutes you’re in the heart of downtown San Francisco. It was very rich and very diverse for sure.

Adapt To Changes: It’s hard to pick your life again and start all over.

It was a culture shock. I remember just taking everything in. I remember the air smelling differently and that it was cold and foggy. Imagine an island girl who lived in the tropics, whether it was in Manila, where the average weather is humid in 90s and 100 and higher as far as the temperature on a daily basis. The same thing in Cebu where I was at the beach every weekend. It was always hot and going to a city where it’s foggy and cold and the average temperature was about 40 to 50 degrees. I was miserable. I embraced it because I didn’t have a choice. I just had to get up and go. I remember my first San Francisco experience. It wasn’t more than three to four months when we moved there. It was a Saturday morning and I heard a lot of noise outside. We lived in an apartment. It was a two-unit apartment. It was a Victorian home, just as very typical in San Francisco where you’d find the old-style Victorian homes. It had a downstairs unit and an upstairs unit. We occupied the top second floor. I walked all the way down the stairs and as soon as I opened the door, there was a naked parade. Literally, hundreds of people naked with their parade. It was just me. My mom was at work and my stepdad had stepped out.

Also, I did have a stepbrother and a stepsister. My sister and I moved into my mom and my stepdad. We moved along with my stepbrother and my stepsister. Anyway, I had to sit down on the stairs and take it all in. I was shocked because I’ve never seen such a thing, but that was my welcome experience to San Francisco. Looking back, it was one of those experiences that made me accept and be open to all sorts of people and background. That is one of those things that I’ve learned living in San Francisco. I love the diversity, the different cultures and the different background. It was definitely very liberal. You could be and do anything that you wanted. No one told you not to do it and it became normal. That was one of those things that I got introduced to in less than six months moving to San Francisco. From there going to school was very challenging for me being Filipino in the middle of San Francisco. During that time, there were not a lot of Filipinos in the area where I lived. I was the minority. I remember in elementary school, I finished fifth grade. I got in towards the last half of the school year. I was the only Filipino in the room, the majority of the people and the students in the school were American, Black and Hispanic.

In middle school, it was a big middle school. I can count on my fingers how many Asians were in my class. When I say Asians, I was one of two Filipinos, maybe six Cambodians and maybe two Chinese. We were definitely the minority in a group. The school that I went to had a lot of Blacks, Hispanics and American. From a culture standpoint, I had to learn how to adapt. When I was in fifth grade, I got teased. I got called all sorts of names because I had an accent. I had to think to myself, “I have to adapt, I don’t want to get teased, I don’t want to get bullied. I don’t want to be called all these names, I wanted to fit in, I wanted to belong.” It also brought me back to that place where I was in elementary school where I couldn’t participate because I didn’t have books. I was just like, “I need to adapt.” I adapted quickly.

How did you adapt during that time?

I worked on how I talked. I tried to eliminate my accent as much as I possibly could. On weekends, I was sitting in front of a mirror and mimicking accents. The things that I wanted to change and adapt during that time was my accent because I got teased for it. I got called all sorts of names that I didn’t want to be called. The other one was being open and flexible to the environment that I was in and observing. One of the traits that I do have and I still have to this day is I’m very observant. I observe the environment, the people, what they’re doing, what works and what don’t work. Those were me of the things that I remember thinking about. I had to work on my accent. It took a while for me to minimize the Filipino accent and sound normal in what would be acceptable during that time. I adapted as far as friends. I started to look at what they were wearing and started buying clothes that were more socially fit. As adolescent that’s one of those things that you want to do is fit within your environment and that was the goal back then. How I have adapted, that’s still something that I used this day is be observant. I watch what’s going on and assess the situation and look at ways that I can engage and stay fluid.

There’s always this way that I can observe and make changes as needed so I can be fluid in my environment and belong. That’s not the case now. I am at that point in my life that I don’t want to be like everybody else. I’m an individual. I’m an individualist and my strength comes from me being who I am and not necessarily doing the things everybody wants to do. Being authentic to who I am as a person and doing what I love, whether it’s showing up how I want to show up, dressing up how I want to dress up, and talking how I want to talk. That’s the change that I’ve had to go through to be the person who I am today. A lot of the years that I have spent as a child was trying to fit in and trying to be accepted socially and moving from one place to the other, not building a solid foundation for myself. It was more of a survival thing to try to fit in and try to be accepted because I didn’t want to be rejected. That was my experience growing up. The first sixteen years of my life, I was looking at ways where I can fit in so I don’t feel rejected.

Are you proud now to be a Filipino-American?

Absolutely. I could see the reason why my mom did sacrifice a few years of being apart from me and my sister in order to get us here because of the opportunities that are available for Filipinas or for women in general here in the United States. If I were still in the Philippines today, my life would be entirely different. What I’m proud of being here in America are the opportunities. If you have the drive and the passion to pursue something, whether it’s in your professional life or it’s a hobby or whatever it is, you can. No one tells you not to and you have an equal opportunity to build something and make something of yourself here in the United States.

Going back to my high school years, I was around fifteen years old. At that point, I realized I didn’t have control over my life. I had a lot of people telling me where I need to go, what I need to do. I felt that things were not going how I would like them to go. My reference point was when I lived in Cebu with my aunt. I had the reference point of I know what I want in my life. I’ve experienced that life. I know that there’s something better.

After moving here to San Francisco, a few years after that, my mom and my stepdad got divorced. We had to leave our house in San Francisco. We moved into a family friend and we moved into a studio downstairs from someone’s home. The studio was just a big room and a bathroom. It had a small counter with a sink for the kitchen top. I felt like I was experiencing another downturn in my life where we’re middle class in the US and now we were sleeping on the floor in a studio space at the garage area of someone’s home. I experienced that for two to three years and I didn’t like it. I experienced some dark years during my teens and in high school experiencing that. There were also some challenges at home. I had to start working at a very young age. I started helping with bills and helping my mom at home. I started working when I was fifteen.

Adapt To Changes: Being observant is something that helps you adapt.

What did you do?

I did a whole lot of different stuff. The last year when I was in San Francisco, I was very fortunate that I got a job at Pier 39 as a busser. I helped clear out tables at a restaurant. It was decent money and I did that for a year. I got up early in the morning to go to school, then right after school I had to take the bus. It took about an hour and a half to get to Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco and I worked long shifts. I would get to work at around 4 PM, my shift started at 5 PM and I was there until 11:30 PM. Then I would take an hour and a half bus ride back home. I didn’t get home until past midnight and I still had to do homework. There were a lot of nights where I only got two to three hours of sleep and I would do that over and over again.

Looking back, do you think that experience made or trained you to become a tougher person?

Absolutely. I’m very thankful that I got to experience those things. It helped me become resourceful. At an early age, I already knew how to make money. I already knew how to work for it. When I was about fifteen, I decided that enough is enough. I’m ready to move on and live my life on my terms. I know people who moved down here in San Diego. I left San Francisco and moved to San Diego by the time I turned sixteen. I bought a one-way ticket. I only had $60 in my pocket, I quit my job and then I moved down here. It did teach me that I’m able to take care of myself and that regardless of age because I have had work experience I knew I could get another job.

For maybe a good eight months, I moved into someone’s home and slept on the couch. Within six months I got myself a job at a department store and started working. It did help me that I did experience those things because it helped toughen me up. One of the things again is resourcefulness. It gave me the drive to want to do better for myself. That’s exactly what I wanted to do when I moved out here to San Diego. I worked for a department store down here. Then at that time, I had a boyfriend who is now my husband. We’ve been together for 26 years. My husband and I, during that time, moved into our own apartment and we kept working.

A year and a half after I worked at the department store, I left to work at a restaurant. I worked there for about six months. I was very fortunate that one evening, I had customers who were managers for Wells Fargo Bank here in San Diego. By the time that they were going to leave, they gave me their cards and said, “We want you to come work for us. You’re a great worker. We love your work ethics and please apply, we want to hire you.” At that time, I was waitressing in the evenings and during the daytime, I was taking classes at Palomar College. It’s a small community college in North County, San Diego. At that time I was like, “Why not? Let me go ahead and try it.” I was surprised but not surprised because I wanted to get into a career, especially it was Wells Fargo Bank. It’s a great company at that time that I thought it would be a great way for me to start my professional career. I was hired as a personal banker. During that time, I was nineteen years old and I was one of the youngest personal bankers.

For those people who are not familiar with the difference in the positions of what a banker is, it’s not the entry-level position that you can get into at the bank. Usually, the entry level position that you can get in is a teller, then a customer service representative and then a personal banker. Personal bankers were the people who help open up accounts, personal and business. They help people set up retirement accounts and refer customers to mortgage banking and financial investing. That was the role that I was able to get hired for when I was only nineteen. That was a big deal for me. My hourly rate working at the restaurant was only $6.20 plus tips. Imagine at nineteen years old I was earning $6.20 and then all of a sudden, I was making $13 an hour. That was a big deal.

How did you become an owner of an IT company? Did you have any training? Did you go to school for it?

I worked for Wells Fargo Bank for nine and a half years. They’re one of the best as it relates to professional development. They have their own curriculum around management, marketing, sales and leadership. They call it Wells Fargo University. I also went to school during that time while I was working and I was majoring in marketing. I didn’t finish my degree during that time, but there was a lot of training and professional development that the company offered me. Within the nine and a half years I was there, the last six and a half years I was in a management role. I was responsible for running a branch. At one point I was managing up to 25 employees. I got to learn how to work and manage the budget for the branch, process payroll, the complete business management.

A big part of my responsibility was business banking. I was a business banker and a consultant. I serviced a lot of businesses. I didn’t have an IT background, but during that time we went through three to four different bank acquisitions. Being that I was the manager, usually the manager when there is some type of bank acquisition takes on the role as a project coordinator. You work along the IT team whenever there are technology refreshes and updates. I was the person coordinating, scheduling and also being there on-site when technology updates and upgrades needed to happen. When there was something wrong, if our network went down, I was the person on the phone with our technical team troubleshooting. I did have experience in troubleshooting. I was very comfortable going into our network cabinet and taking a look at routers, the servers, rebooting and unplugging. That was easy for me.

I did get exposed to project coordination with the IT team. I experienced at least three to four times during the last six and a half years where I was at the bank. How I transitioned to IT is this. My husband who has been an IT professional since 1998 was an IT director for a biotech firm here in San Diego. We experienced three different layoffs in early 2000s. He worked for larger organizations but whenever there was a budget cut or there was something that happened with a contract, the first department that got impacted was the IT department. We experienced three different layoffs within ten years. At that time he was like, “I know I’m working for this biotech firm, but it would be great if we can start our own IT firm and offer enterprise IT to small businesses.”

At that time, I was ready to leave the bank and I wanted to start my own business. I said, “I knew how to run a business. I’ve been doing it for at least six and a half, seven years. I know how to do business development. I’m very familiar with how to engage and talk to business customers,” because I was a business banker. It was more of a consulting type of approach that I used when working with my business clients as it relates to their cash management needs. I transferred what I knew and learned at the bank to technology. That’s how I got into the IT field. I started IT TechPros. My husband was still working as an IT director for this biotech firm. I created all of our plans and did business development.

Within a month, I was networking. I got our first contract and went back to school. I got technology certifications. I’m a certified Microsoft Professional. At one point, I had CompTIA Certifications. These are standard certifications that you acquire within the industry. I had to learn quickly and adapt. It seems like that’s the theme of my life. I want to go back to your question, do I think that what I experienced as a child, although during that time was challenging and difficult, did that help me? Absolutely. The different changes that I had to go through in such a short period of time, being able to adapt in all of the different environments and the different changes in where I live gave me the strength to accept change and flow with the environment.

Adapt To Changes: Being able to adapt in different environments and changes gives you the strength to accept change and flow with life.


That’s exactly what I did when I transitioned from banking to technology. I took everything that I learned. I transferred all of those skills and applied it to my IT business. That’s how I got into IT. It’s been twelve and a half years. Over the last twelve and a half years we have been considered one of the best IT service providers in San Diego. We won many awards. All of those things have paid off, how I was able to take all of my experience as a child and not let it impact me in a negative way but transferred all of those experiences into something positive. That’s what I love being a woman in the United States. As long as you have the tenacity and the drive, you can literally start a business. If you’re passionate about it, you can do that.

I have been very fortunate that I’ve been successful not just in my IT business but also when I worked for Wells Fargo Bank. I also won many awards. I’ve been recognized as top manager while working for Wells Fargo Bank. The same thing with my IT business. I’ve evolved as a business owner through this process. I’ve gotten involved in the community. I started teaching around small business technology and then entrepreneurship and leadership. I have written books that have been published, as well as being a contributor for the Huffington Post. I’ve been a contributing author to magazines that have been published in the United States. That’s my track right there. That’s the timeline of the history of how I’ve evolved as a person, as a career woman, as an individual and then as a business owner, as an entrepreneur.

Congratulations on all those achievements. It is impressive and admirable. What is your definition of success?

At the end of the day, for me, success is doing something that I love. It’s doing what gets me out of bed every single day and that I am happy and successful doing it. When I was younger, I thought success was tied to how much money I made. I’ve been fortunate enough to have financial success, but I also experienced that it’s not all about the money either. It’s great to have all of that. It’s great to have the accolades, the awards and the recognition but for me, success is doing what you love and are passionate about. Contributing my talents and making an impact in other people’s lives, that’s true happiness for me. That’s answering that from my career standpoint. Personally, it’s the same thing as being happy with my family. I have been married to Jeff and we’ve been together for over 26 years. We have two daughters, a 21-year-old daughter and a fifteen-year-old daughter. Happiness to me is being able to enjoy life with them. That’s my definition of happiness.

Congratulations, 21 years old and eighteen. When you shared that you have two daughters, I thought they are just under ten years old.

That’s a different story that I didn’t touch upon. That has helped me take life seriously. During that time when I had interviewed and got a job at Wells Fargo Bank, my oldest daughter was only about six months old at that time. What that taught me being a young mom too is I needed to be responsible. That’s why I took my career seriously. I focused because I had someone to take care of. I wanted to be successful so that way I can provide for them and give them a path that was a lot easier than mine.

Do you believe that in order for one to be successful, one has to learn to sacrifice her life and give up for what you want first?

There’s no direct answer to that. What it comes down to is the situation that a person is in. There is a little bit of sacrifice that needs to happen, some things that you have to defer. Let’s use me as an example. I was a young mom at nineteen. I didn’t get to experience what a normal nineteen-year-old life would be. I didn’t even go to a regular university and experience the college life. I had to be responsible because I was a young mom and I want to have a life under my terms. I was very driven to succeed. I had to sacrifice partying. I had to sacrifice a life of a regular college-age girl because I had to focus on providing for a family. In that sense, I would say it’s based on the situation. I did have to defer a little bit of my life and in living out what is normal for someone who is at that age in order for me to provide for my daughter at that time and build a career for myself.

I’ve been very fortunate that I’ve been very successful to where now I would say, depending on where you’re at in your life. If you have kids who are older, are independent and you’ve already done your part in being a mom, providing and being responsible for the things you’re responsible for, sometimes you no longer need to sacrifice. You just have to stand up for yourself and choose to follow a path that you’ve always wanted. Sometimes it’s deferred. It’s not necessarily a sacrifice that you give it up altogether. You just have to defer it and wait for the right timing in order for you to act on it and realize something that you’ve always wanted. It’s a little bit of that, it’s a balance. I hope that answer makes sense because I did defer. I didn’t give up on what I wanted to do, I just had to defer it. Now, I’m at that point in my life that I can go after everything that I want. I’ve already done all of the hard parts in being a mom and raising my girls and being the mom that I needed to be for them in order for them to have a good life. I’m very proud of that.

Sometimes we have to defer what we want instead of sacrificing. I don’t like the word sacrifice. It’s like killing off. You kill off something that you want. Defer something in the future so that you can get what you want but in the meantime, something else is more important.

I’m right there with you, I don’t like that word sacrifice too. No one tells us to sacrifice anything. Sometimes we feel that we need to give up something in order to provide for others. I associate sacrifice to martyrdom. We don’t want to be a martyr.

I talked to a lot of Asian women, especially Chinese, Vietnamese, those groups. Majority of them think that life is a sacrifice and I couldn’t stand it. Life is about enjoying what you have, find out what you are here for, do it and follow it. Actually, that’s what I do. I coach Asian women to find out what’s important in their life and whether it’s worth it for them to pursue it or not.

You make a very good point there. We have been raised culturally, even in the Filipino culture, sometimes for women, the path for us is being the homemaker or being submissive and not stepping up in leadership roles. I think that’s changing now but there are still a lot of us that don’t step into those roles or do something just because of the upbringing. Working with someone like you and breaking those barriers so that they can walk into their full potential and live out the life that they want, that’s a great thing that you’re doing.

Looking back on your life, what are you most proud of?

I am most proud to be a mom. I’m proud of a lot of things. I’m proud that I was able to start IT TechPros. There are so many highlights. At nineteen, being able to land a corporate job with no major background and experience, getting promoted quickly within the organization. At 27 years old, nine and a half years later, starting my IT business and then experiencing all of the things that I’ve experienced. What I do love is my relationship with my daughters and that’s what I’m most proud of is being able to have that connection with them. Why that is important to me is being moved around many times and not building a foundation with a parent figure was tough for me growing up. I had to learn things the hard way. It’s worked out for me, fortunately, but it was still hard trying to figure things out on my own. I’m very proud of the fact that regardless of all of the arrows that I’ve had to dodge and all of the obstacles I’ve had to overcome, that I kept a stable environment for my daughters. Even for me, I’ve worked towards stability and everything that I do. I’m proud of all my accomplishments.

What would be your top three advices that you want to give to our readers?

The first one is building your confidence. We have an opportunity now as women to step up in whatever role that we want and desire. A lot of the things that stop women is confidence, building the confidence and wanting to do and realizing what they want in life and it takes confidence. How to build confidence is whether if you need to go back to school, learning something new or pursuing what it is that you want. Learning and surrounding yourself with people that can support you and also getting a coach like you, Kimchi, getting connected with you to help them build their confidence. Building your confidence is key so that’s one. Two, surround yourself with supportive people. I don’t think I could be the person I am now without my mentors and coaches. I have a community of women and men that I go to for support because we can do things on our own. Absolutely, we can do that but I’m all about not recreating the wheel and not doing things the hard way. Why would you want to do things the hard way when there are people around you who can support you and make it easier for you?

Surround yourself with supportive people and if you’re not in a space where you have that support, then look for support. Lastly, invest in yourself and continue to develop yourself as a person. Self-awareness is key to any person’s success. What I mean by that is learning about your natural talents and abilities. Once you develop yourself and become self-aware about who you are as a person, it ties into your confidence. It will help you become confident and pursue the things that you want in life. Build your confidence, work with someone that can help you, build that. Two, surround yourself with supportive people because it’s easier when you get the support from others and then three, invest in yourself in your professional development and learn self-awareness.

Adapt To Changes: Life is about enjoying what you have, finding out what you are here for, and following it.

Where do you want our readers to go to and find out more about you and your company?

People can just go to KathyDavid.com. You’ll find all of the other links to my companies there. If you want to find out about IT TechPros, my IT consulting firm, the link will be there. If you want to find out about my books, my speaking and all of my social media links, they’re all on there. I hope that’s been helpful.

It’s a wonderful interview. You have shared a lot of insights. I hope that our readers can take away and apply those in their life. Thank you for being here with us, Kathy.

Thank you for having me. It’s an honor.

We are looking forward to connecting with you again in the future and best wishes on your journey. For our readers, what is your takeaway from this episode? We want to hear from you. If you enjoyed this, please subscribe, review and share this on your social media and tell a friend. We appreciate your support. Until next time, live life loud.

Links Mentioned:

Episode Quotes

"I had to adapt; that's the theme of my life."

"One of the ways I learned to adapt is to be observant of the environment and people."

"My life is like a life of a military child; we moved around a lot."

"If you’re passionate about it, then you can do it."

About Kathy David

Kathy David is President and CEO of IT TechPros, Inc., a company specializing in providing Managed I.T., Hosted Cloud Services, IT Consulting, and Cyber Security services to a wide range of industries including manufacturing, education, legal, commercial construction, financial institutions and other commercial businesses. Considering the multiple awards bestowed upon Kathy’s company and the ever-evolving success story of her company.

Building on a growing list of accolades starting with Asian Heritage Association’s Excellence in Entrepreneurship Award in 2010, Kathy enjoyed a banner year in 2013. IT TechPros was named 2013 Supplier of the Year Class I by the Women’s Business Enterprise Council-West (WBEC-West), as well as 2013 Minority-Owned Business of the Year, awarded by the San Diego District of the Small Business Administration.
In 2014, Kathy received special recognition by the State of California Senate, District 39, and the North County San Diego Business Development Center, for Kathy’s tenacity, hard work, and success in creating economic impact and inspiring potential entrepreneurs in the business community. In 2017, she was named one of the ToP Women CEOs by WBEUSA Magazine.
But as powerful a force Kathy has become in the I.T. world, Kathy is a small business leader, an in-demand professional speaker, a trainer, a renowned author, as well as an authority in the field of Small Business Technology.
Kathy and her company have been seen in USA Today, CNBC, Boston Globe, Reuters, ABC 10News San Diego, KUSI Good Morning San Diego, Huffington Post, Small Business Administration (SBA) publication, featured on the cover of MBE Magazine (May/June 2014 – 30th Anniversary Edition), SD Business Journal, MBE Magazine, SD Magazine, Asian Media, Union Tribune San Diego, San Diego Metro Magazine, and many more. Kathy was a featured guest on the Inside Scoop on A&E as well as the show Time Square Today on BIO!
To find out more about Kathy and her company, go to www.it-techpros.com, or www.kathydavid.com.

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