Tracy Ruberg, executive director of The Circuit, has been passionate about technology for as long as she can remember.
During an introductory typing class at Mount Healthy High School, Ruberg recognized the time-saving benefits of technology. By college, Ruberg’s typing speed had reached 110 words per minute and new opportunities to leverage her skills arose. She landed a part-time job as a word processor, which ultimately allowed her to pay for college at Indiana University in Bloomington.
“When I was in college, I saw that technology was going to take hold in our world,” Ruberg says. “Meanwhile, I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do and I fell in love with technology. I earned a double major in quantitative business analysis and marketing, which has allowed me to translate technology into real business results throughout my career.”
After college, Ruberg pursued a career in the tech industry, holding positions at various Fortune 500 companies, including Dell and HP as well as privately held organizations. She was a long-time member of The Circuit, Cincinnati’s IT association, before assuming her current role earlier this year. Ruberg enjoys helping other professionals understand how to leverage new and existing technology to impact their business or organization.
“I’m excited to have the opportunity to use my years of technology experience to make a difference in the marketplace for businesses, schools and organizations,” says Ruberg.
Ruberg believes The Circuit will continue to be a vital resource for the region.
“The Circuit met a very real need in Cincinnati. We have such a vibrant startup culture in Cincinnati coupled with many Fortune 500 companies that rely on tech. We have an opportunity to help deliver what these folks need,” Ruberg says.
Today, The Circuit is Greater Cincinnati’s non-profit information technology association. The Circuit’s membership includes companies that provide IT solutions, products and services, as well as people who use technology in their careers. The Circuit provides education, connection and collaboration opportunities to its members.
“The Circuit is really for any company or non-profit in Cincinnati,” Ruberg says. You don’t have to be a tech company or a programmer to benefit from what we have to offer. Today, every business has technology but not every business owner understands technology. The Circuit can help them understand the benefits and impact of certain technology.”
Ruberg strives to be available as a support and resource. Likewise, she recognizes the potential for The Circuit to impact growth among local businesses by offering support and resources. The beauty of The Circuit is in the opportunity for collaboration. At each gathering, Ruberg creates time for personal connections and dialogue between members.
“Competition is good and valuable but it’s through collaboration and recognizing each other’s strengths and building connections and trust that we can really help grow companies in our area and benefit the region,” she says. “We’re here to help everyone overcome challenges to benefit the market and better understand the landscape.”
A Conversation with Tracy Ruberg
LEAD Magazine: What would you share with rising leaders in the tech field?
Tracy Ruberg: Throw yourself into your field and learn to listen and pay attention to people. Really listen and ask questions and understand the questions you are asked so you don’t make assumptions before you answer. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and seek a mentor as the field is constantly changing.
LM: What is your leadership philosophy?
TR: Make sure everyone is going in the same direction and leverage the team’s strengths to get where we need to go. My way is not the only way, so I try to let others work the way that is best for them. Let go as long as everyone is moving towards a united goal.
LM: What aspect of your role at The Circuit makes you especially proud?
TR: The opportunity to bring groups together and get them excited about the tech community in the region. To see people interested in what is happening, watch our attendance at events increase and our programs knit themselves together to provide value to a wide range of people.
LM: What are the biggest opportunities for The Circuit?
TR: We have a number of opportunities to bring a great technology community together in the Greater Cincinnati area – start-ups to Fortune 500, long term professionals with students in both high school and college. One of the biggest opportunities we have is to find a way to work together to encourage more individuals to enter technology careers, to stay in the region or come back to the region.