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D Crop

Danielle Crop

Chief Data Officer (CDO) | Statistician | Data Quality Champion

What attracted you to data management or IT, and why did you choose to pursue this career?

It chose me. I started out studying ecology and wanted to understand how to make more informed decisions about the environment, that’s how I ended up getting a Masters in Statistics. After college, I could not find my dream job surveying birds in the forest, so I took a job at a credit card company. From there, I have had a mix of analytics, data and product management roles throughout my career.

What has been your greatest career accomplishment so far, and why has it been important to your career?

My greatest career accomplishment is knowing the best is yet to come. While I have accomplished so many things, including the first scaled agile transformation and building a billion-dollar experimentation program at American Express, there is so much more that I can accomplish.

What are the two or three biggest challenges you face as a data management professional / CDO and how can we address them?

Building the team. These skill sets are rare and challenging to find.

How do you see data management / the role of the CDO / IT changing in the next 2 – 3 years?

I see further specialization in data science and AI. Today, we hire a baseline skill set and ask them to do anything and everything, in the future I think there will be as much differentiation in the business world as there already is in academia.

Do you have any planned next steps for your career?

I do not plan my career. I do the very best job I can in my current role, seek out interesting growth and learning opportunities, and new things come my way.

What is the single best piece of advice you have received in your data management / IT career so far?  Why has it been so important to you?

The single best piece of advice I have received is do not let others define or limit your role. You have agency to see where things need improvement and advocate.

Can you share something about yourself as a person that people wouldn’t know about you?

I was a graphic designer when I was doing post baccalaureate work to get into grad school. So, during the day I was doing art, at night I was battling linear algebra, gave both sides of my brain a work out. 🙂

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