Behind the Screens- Meet Marwa

Marwa has been a member of team CIO Solutions going on 2 years. She was born in Santa Barbara, to parents who immigrated there from Boone County, Missouri, and Alexandria, Egypt. She currently lives in Goleta with her cat, Fire Lord Ozai. On your average weekend, you’ll probably find her growing carnivorous plants and photographing the local bird populations, and she has also taken up singing lessons in the hope of becoming famous. She is very proud of the fact that she completely reversed her fear of flying, and is now fascinated by aviation, secretly hoping for a rapid decompression event whenever she flies alone, so she can use one of those oxygen masks.

Marwa is currently one class away from an associate’s degree in Computer Information Systems and has a degree in Plant Biology. 

As one of our skilled Rapid Response Technicians, if you call in with a problem, there’s a good chance she’ll be the one picking up! Regarding her role, Marwa says “I enjoy the high-stakes nature of Rapid Response since I get to help users as soon as an issue comes up, and hopefully get them off the phone as quickly as possible! (In a good way, because the issue is resolved. I will gladly stay on the phone as long as necessary.)”


Read on to learn more about Marwa!


What would the title of your autobiography be?

Twelfth Night, by William Shakespeare
[I just reread the question and realized it said autobiography, instead of biography, which implies that I think I’m William Shakespeare. I do not. I’ll go with, “William Shakespeare is my pen name. If Joanne can do it, why can’t I?”]


What has been your proudest moment at CIO?

I can’t really think of any specific moment, I’m just proud to be a member of the CIO team, and to see how far we’ve come from the far off year of 2020.


What’s something most people don’t know about you?

I have a working knowledge of electricity from my time working at Home Depot. Also, I am very happy that the cost of LED bulbs has dropped drastically between 2015 and now. There’s really no reason not to replace your old incandescent and fluorescent bulbs with LEDs. No more ballasts!


How would your family or friends describe you in three words?

On Egypt time
(A euphemism for being chronically late. I literally have my doctor’s office put the appointment time as half an hour earlier on the reminder card. Maybe I shouldn’t have this in my employee spotlight?)


Who is your hero? Why?

Captain Ted Thompson and First Officer Bill Tansky
In the final minutes of Alaska Airlines Flight 261, they never gave up trying to save the aircraft. I think that it’s important to keep going with things even in the face of certain catastrophe.


What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard?

Store peanut butter upside down. Truly life-changing advice.


What was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve had?

I worked for a summer at The Scripps Research Institute’s DNA Arrary Core Lab in La Jolla. I got to extract RNA from human blood, which was a novel experience for me.


If you could go back to any moment in time, when would it be?

October 4, 1957, so that I could listen to Sputnik’s first orbit over shortwave radio.


Would you rather be the funniest or smartest person in the room? Why?

Neither, I prefer not to draw attention to myself. If I have to choose though, I would say smart, since that doesn’t draw as much attention.


What’s the weirdest fact you know?

5% of Americans think that Espresso is a delivery service (according to Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader)


What’s your favorite famous or inspirational quote?

“The people of Egypt are an intelligent people with a glorious history who left their mark on civilization” -Fidel Castro


If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?

How to pilot a fixed-wing aircraft


If you could have an unlimited supply of one thing, what would it be?



What’s something you’re planning on doing in the next year that you’ve never done?

I’m going to a wedding in Goa.


What do you pretend to hate but actually love?

Nothing! I would never lie about something so important! xD


What’s your favorite TV show? Why?

Silo, it’s so good, seriously just drop everything and watch it right now.


What’s the weirdest food you’ve ever eaten? How was it?

PB&J. If someone told me to smear two slices of bread with ground legumes, then smash them together with pureed raspberries, that would sound very strange, but it’s SO GOOD! According to Wikipedia, its recipe was first published by Boston Cooking School Magazine in 1901, which makes sense, because it definitely sounds like the kinda thing they’d eat in crowded, turn-of-the-century factories.


If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

I would be able to hold my breath underwater for about 30 minutes.


What could you give a 30-minute presentation on without any advance preparation?

The effects of deregulation on the aviation industry.


If your life were a movie, who would play you?

Alia Shawkat


Bonus: What 3 words would you use to describe CIO Solutions?

Supportive, positive, energy


We are proud of our team of skilled and friendly individuals. It’s a unique group of collaborators and innovators who share a common “can-do” mentality paired with a fondness for gifs and puns. 

Looking for opportunities to join our team? Visit our Careers page to see all open positions in our Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Fresno offices!