Are you ready to supercharge your career? Don’t let soft skills hold you back from the career you deserve! In today’s fast-paced and interconnected world, technical skills are essential, but soft skills are the key to unlocking the doors to your dream career.

Our panel will delve into the critical role soft skills play in personal and professional growth. They will discuss the importance of communication, negotiation, time management, teamwork, and critical thinking in achieving your career aspirations. 

Through real-world anecdotes and practical advice, our panelists will guide you in harnessing the power of soft skills to overcome challenges, enhance your problem-solving abilities, and stand out in a competitive job market. Whether you’re a recent graduate looking to kickstart your career or a seasoned professional aiming to reach new heights, this discussion will equip you with the insights and strategies needed to unlock your true potential. 

Meet our speakers:

Kayla Banuelos – Product Marketing Manager  

For the last 11 years, Kayla Banuelos has been functioning in various roles at ESET, starting as a Technical Support Specialist to Business Support Manager and more recently, Product Marketing Manager. As a product marketing manager, she oversees the public-facing communication strategy for product launches in the B2C and B2B segments. Outside of work Kayla loves spending outdoor time with her family and attending concerts. 


Karen Castro – Systems Engineer II

Karen Castro, a dedicated Systems Engineer II at ESET, holds an array of CompTIA certifications, including A+, Network+, and Linux+, and is actively working towards CompTIA Security+ and CySA+. She is also pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Cybersecurity to further enhance her knowledge and expertise. With a strong technical background in areas such as system administration, network management, and IT infrastructure, Karen has made significant contributions throughout her career, having worked at Logically (a Managed Services Provider) and the San Diego Community College District. She is currently responsible for monitoring, maintaining, and updating IT systems at ESET, providing quality assurance, and acting as an initial responder to off-hours system outages. Additionally, Karen is a committed member of the Women’s Society of Cyberjutsu (WSC) and is fervently passionate about advocating for women in the IT field. With her strong technical background and unwavering dedication to ongoing education, Karen is poised to make a lasting impact in the world of technology. 


Anjanae Hile – Partner Account Manager

Anjanae Hile is not only an accomplished cybersecurity sales professional at ESET North America but also a dedicated advocate for women’s advancement and holistic well-being. Anjanae currently oversees national accounts as a Partner Account Manager. With over three years of dedicated service at ESET, she has quickly progressed in her career by dependably demonstrating her expertise in managing partner relationships and driving sales.  

Leading the Women of the Workplace ERG at ESET, she fosters an inclusive environment and actively contributes to the company’s culture of inclusion. She is also a leader in the company meditation program, and is a certified yoga instructor, sharing her expertise with her community.  

Anjanae holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from California State University San Marcos and an Associate’s degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from Palomar College. She actively pursues professional development by consistently engaging in continuing educational certification programs highlighting her commitment to both personal and professional growth. 


Marissa Pitchford – Head of Corporate Responsibility

Marissa Pitchford serves as the Head of Corporate Social Responsibility for ESET North America. She works with a global team dedicated to shaping and implementing community involvement initiatives for maximum impact. Marissa also focuses on fostering inclusivity within the workplace and advancing sustainability practices, helping to steer ESET towards achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.

Beyond her corporate responsibilities, Marissa actively engages with local nonprofits, sharing insights on cybersecurity fundamentals and safeguards with the next generation of female cybersecurity professionals. Her support extends to organizations such as Girl Scouts, Greater Than Tech, Boys & Girls Club, and Promises2Kids where she also serves as a youth mentor for their Women in Leadership program. Additionally, Marissa serves as a board member for Boys & Girls Club, Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship Leadership in Community Involvement Advisory Board, and contributes as an active member of the SD Chamber of Commerce