Employee Profile | Diane McClatchy, Cyber Security Engineer

Tell me about yourself.

I started my career as a college coop at ARINC in 1979 and was there until 2019, at which point I began my work at LST. I worked in electronic Warfare on the defense side until I had children. At that point, I transitioned to focus on air to ground network to be home more. In a way, this work made the transition to LST pretty seamless.

When I started, I was headquartered in Annapolis, one of the two air ground providers. And my company used to be a wholly-owned subsidiary of an airline. So, when I first started working there in 1979, I was technically an airline employee, which was super fun. Eventually, ARINC was acquired by Rockwell Collins, and I started doing research projects; and I spent a good chunk of that studying blockchain as I was completing a master’s degree in Cyber Security with my capstone in blockchain.

Then I joined the Advanced Technology Group and continued studying the application of blockchain to our business units. As part of these efforts, I collaborated on an application of blockchain to aircraft systems as they evolve, incorporating internet protocol communications. We developed and patented blockchain ledger for vehicular systems. The value of blockchain is the ability to record transactions in a verifiable and permanent way. On an aircraft, this can provide an immutable source of aircraft state that can be used to validate outside inputs before allowing an action to be initiated.

How did you hear about LST?

I was introduced to LST by a colleague whose spouse works at LST. I told him that I would take my time after retiring, but LST just seemed like a homey fit. And it’s been great.

Have you always worked in aviation?

Always. I’ve just always been infatuated with it. I never got my pilot’s license, but it was something that I had always planned to do. And then, I got the job at ARINC and became immersed in my work. I played college tennis for the University of Maryland. When we would go play teams at Haines point, I would literally lose focus as each plane went by, looking up and gawking at it.

What career lessons or anecdotes do you want to share?

Just keep on trying. There are many ups and downs. I lean on Maya Angelo’s quote: “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” I start my day with this quote in mind.

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