Why did you become a Certified Forensic Interviewer (CFI)?
I am a strong believer in continuous professional self-improvement and consider myself a perpetual student. I have had my eye on obtaining a CFI for a long time because despite being comfortable with my interview skills, I felt there was room for delving even deeper into the art of it and for expanding the pool of knowledge I had to draw upon. It was clear that it benefited not only myself, but the organization I work for and in a small part, the industry I am a part of because it gets one more trained interviewer. There is no downside to obtaining the CFI, there are only benefits. As such, there is no reason not to pursue it.
What was the most difficult challenge you came across while preparing for the CFI exam?
Time management was certainly a challenge. Balancing high work demands while finding the hours to dedicate myself to study and prep, while not easy, was achievable. The other big challenge was me. I had accumulated years of interviewing habits, some of which were not aligned with what is outlined in the CFI program. I had to consciously approach the training as if I were a blank slate and “unlearn” several things.
Do you use social media? If so, which ones?
I use LinkedIn only. I am somewhat old-fashioned about privacy and about putting my life out there for everyone to see. However, I do use some sock puppet accounts across platforms for investigations that use the open sources that social media provides.
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about people doing what they love. If you love your work, it doesn’t feel like work and you can maintain energy and enthusiasm indefinitely. And I love what I do!
Who do you most admire? Who is your favorite person? Why?
For the sake of his privacy, I will not mention his name. I know a former “Lost Boy of Sudan” through some charity work my wife was involved in. He was recruited into the militia at 11 years old, forced to commit atrocities that no person should ever have to be witness to let alone a child, and ended up having his arm removed as a punishment for stealing food. He eventually made it to the Kakuma Refugee Camp, and from there to the United States where he has flourished. He has a great career, a wonderful family, and an outlook on life that hasn’t been tainted by his experiences. Today he gives back his time in helping others. He gives me hope and serves as an example of strength of spirit, and the promise of liberty.
If you could trade places for a day with anyone, who would it be?
Scott Kelly. He’s retired now of course, but it would be interesting to be on the ISS for a day. I am not sure how he would feel about doing my job for a day though!
If you were stranded on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A desalinator, a fire-starter, and a satellite phone.
What’s your favorite movie?
2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s visually stunning, short on scripted dialogue, and high-concept. And for its time in 1968, the effects were extremely advanced.