Rolling Out

Blacks in Microsoft Atlanta lead Trey Warren’s transition from college football

How the enterprise account executive climbed the ranks of corporate

Trey Warren has found his footing after sports. The former tri-sport athlete at Marietta High School and linebacker at UT-Martin has landed a leadership role in the corporate space and has climbed the ranks ever since as a young professional.

Recently, rolling out stopped by Microsoft‘s Atlanta headquarters to speak to Warren about his path to becoming an enterprise account executive for the Fortune 13 company.

When did you first get interested in tech?

That’s an interesting question because, as you know, my whole life was structured around sports. I grew up playing football, and when I played football in college and didn’t necessarily know what I wanted to do from there, I transitioned into logistics, and the sales and development role.

Throughout my career, I had an interest in it, but I didn’t necessarily understand how to get into tech. You don’t necessarily have to be the greatest coder or know Python or every new thing that comes out, but what you do have to have to be able to do is have a vision, the ability and agility to pivot, change fast, and learn.

I can’t necessarily pinpoint a time. I think I’ve always been interested in tech because I’m interested in innovation. As I’ve grown older, I think my passion lies in problem-solving and finding creative ways to do that. That’s what technology does. Every year they come out with a new iPhone, chat GPT, open AI, and what are those things? Those are solutions to help people solve everyday problems and it’s innovative. So innovation is really how I got into tech.

What message do you have for Black kids who view being successful only as being a famous athlete or entertainer?

J. Cole once said something along the lines of either “rap or play ball.” More times than not, that’s not the only path.

I think it’s paramount to understand where your passions lie. If you like playing basketball, okay, cool. Well, everybody can’t go to the NBA, but there are commentators, referees, stat keepers, coaches and scouts. It can’t always just be, “Hey, this is the only route. This is where my passion lies. This is what I care about.” Think about other opportunities or career paths where I can utilize or stay with my passion. How can I figuratively stay around the game, make money and have a career?

What’s new for Black employees at Microsoft?

We recently did a great event with Champ Bailey. We’re very blessed to have him come in and be a part of speaking to our youth. A lot of advice I’ve given came from Champ Bailey.

We have a partnership with UPS and a lot of the Atlanta Public Schools with mentorship. My particular role in the Blacks in Microsoft community here in Atlanta is I’m the lead for mentorship. Everything I do is centered around giving back to the youth. Big brother, big sister, we have partnerships with some of the Marietta City Schools and elementary schools.

You’ll see us in a community and pour into the youth because the youth is our future. I think we’re doing a great job of showing the youth that tech is cool, there are opportunities in tech, and there are opportunities in tech for people who look like us.

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