UT Dallas Experience, Degree Help Former Pitcher Cover the Bases
Mike Knox BS'08 Credits Jindal School and Yankees Organization for Preparing Him for a Career Fighting Cybercrime
Mike Knox BS'08
Mike Knox BS’08 credits his three-year stint as a pitcher in the New York Yankees minor league system and his degree from The University of Texas at Dallas for giving him the foundation for a career fighting cybercrime.
“There are quite a few parallels between the Yankees organization and UTD,” he said. “There's their reputations and the teamwork aspects.”
Drafted by the Yankees in 2002, Knox pitched for affiliated teams in New York's Staten Island; Tampa, Florida; and Charleston, South Carolina. Although he could throw a 96 mph fastball, an injury forced him to look ahead to a post-baseball career. With roots in Dallas, Knox returned to North Texas and enrolled at UT Dallas to pursue a finance degree in the Naveen Jindal School of Management.
As a player in the Yankees organization, he had immersed himself in the technical aspects of baseball by learning how to throw a change-up. At UT Dallas, he mastered presentation and communication skills, and researched relevant case studies.
“There were so many opportunities to do group work in the finance program,” Knox said. “I think that is such a powerful way to learn, build your critical thinking skills and grow your team-building and business skills.
“There are quite a few parallels between the Yankees organization and UTD. There’s their reputations and the teamwork aspects.”
“My business finance class led by senior lecturer Frank Anderson helped me master those skills through group work and presentations to my class,” he said. “I got the foundation I needed to succeed in my career today.”
After graduation, Knox embarked on his career with stops at DLT Solutions and Oracle as an account executive. In 2014, Moreover Technologies recruited him to be its vice president of sales and grow its North America territory. After the company was acquired by LexisNexis, he worked his way up to regional vice president for the Americas.
Last year, Knox undertook his latest challenge — leading the sales efforts at Nehemiah Security, a cybersecurity software and services company, as senior vice president of sales.
“The challenges in the cybersecurity industry keep growing in complexity,” he said. “Hackers aren’t sitting on their hands. They’re going out there and trying to exploit some of our most important corporations, financial centers and health care systems.”
Whenever he attends leadership meetings at Nehemiah, he draws upon his experiences with the Yankees and at UT Dallas.
“I work with product development and marketing and sometimes have to be able to influence to help support our revenue growth,” he said.
“The foundation I built at UTD and with the Yankees showed me that it all comes down to teamwork and group work. Anyone can time a fastball, so I had to rely on my team to help me win. The same thing applied to the group work I did at UTD, and it certainly applies to business as well.”
Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].