Being an active leader in user groups has helped Melinda Sensabaugh make great strides in her telecom career. “I have learned so much about this field and continued to grow as a professional,” said Sensabaugh, an E911/NG911 consultant with SensaComm LLC in Traverse City, Michigan.
Back in 1988, Sensabaugh completed a program in electronic engineering and joined AT&T in the Detroit area on a part-time basis. After taking several years off to raise her children, she returned to telecom in 1997, and joined the City of Dearborn. She spent 12 years with the city, becoming the communications coordinator, before the 2009 recession forced the city to cut back its workforce. But Sensabaugh was able to land on her feet, joining Haggerty Insurance, a classic car insurance company in northern Michigan.
Meanwhile, Sensabaugh had become president of the Nortel user group’s Michigan chapter, a role she continued after the formation of IAUG. “I attended the first IAUG conference in Denver in 2010 after the Nortel-Avaya merger,” she said. At the event, she met a representative from Munson Medical Center in Traverse City. That led to Sensabaugh becoming a consultant, for Munson Healthcare, a regional, nonprofit health care system annually serving 13 counties in Michigan. “Munson supports 15,000 end points and over 150 buildings including five hospital campuses,” she said. “I am helping the organization implement its E911 system.”
Through Michigan chapter meetings and the international conference, Sensabaugh has advanced her understanding of technology, gained certifications and expanded her professional network. “I find IAUG’s conference so valuable, that I have funded myself three different times,” she said. “Before going, I write a checklist of the top issues, and then meet the vendors and talk to the engineers, as well as my colleagues. Being a member of IAUG has opened many new doors for me.”