Man at Maryland's hottest tech startup becomes a woman, everyone claps
Hank becomes Helga
The name and likeness of the transgender person profiled in this article have been changed.
Maryland’s hottest tech startup offers employees excellent health insurance, and it’s a good thing, because one 39 year-old middle-manager at the Anne-Arundel County based Dragos Industrial Cybersecurity would need it to help pay for Hormone Replacement Therapy and Facial Feminization Surgery as he transitioned from being Hank to Helga.
Hank became Helga, and everyone clapped
When Hank, a Director of Product at Dragos, announced publicly on Linkedin he was now Helga, it became one of the most engaged with social media posts in the history of the global cybersecurity company located in Hanover, racking up more than 600 reactions and 97 comments on the professional networking site.
Hank, now Helga, said: “I guess I should mention that I've recently come out as transgender 🏳️⚧️ and you all knew me as [Hank]. I've not been hacked. 😂 Happy Monday everyone! 😊”
Industry peers from many of Maryland’s largest employers of tech personnel, like Tenable, FEI Systems, Crowdstrike, Truist, and Capital One, promptly reacted by liking, loving, and celebrating Helga’s post. While others commented marveling at her bravery, and to thank her for what she was doing.
A Director of Cybersecurity at General Electric, an old white man, said: “Inspiring..... Thank you. You may not be aware of the people you have touched, or how they have been impacted with this post. All I can say is Thank You!!!”.
An Information Security Consultant with Amazon Web Services, said she was glad there were such high quality women like Helga working in the cyber industry: “[Helga], your courage is truly inspiring and our industry is lucky to have a women of your caliber contributing to it”.
One cybersecurity consultancy founder, who had previously been a disinformation researcher for an organization called MediaVax, said simply but emphatically: “May your name ring loud and true!!”.
Executive gender affirmation, & Davos WEF
And Dragos’s CEO and Co-Founder Robert M. Lee, confirmed that Helga’s gender transition was both professionally of relevance and deserving of public praise. He said: “Very proud to have you on our team. You’re brave, and awesome, and most importantly true to yourself. Good job teammate” — thus embedding trans silliness into the culture of the company responsible for protecting critical infrastructure like water utilities and oil refineries from cyber threat actors.
Lee first rose to acclaim in 2015, when after working at the National Security Agency through the Air Force’s Cyber Warfare operation, he was the first to confirm it was the Russians who were behind an attack on Ukraine’s electrical grid. He started Dragos in 2016, and has since raised $364M in funding for the company now on the fast track to going public on a valuation of $1.7B.
Just two weeks ago, Lee wrapped up his second trip to Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum, where he serves as a Technology Pioneer and a Global Innovator. He participated on a panel about global collaboration against cyber-crime alongside the Albanian Prime Minister, who said the global cyber threat is like a “pandemic, but worse”.
Helga’s wife, daughter, and trans-girlfriend
Helga’s parents were conservative Baptists, she says, a background that may explain how she ended up at Liberty University, an outwardly Christian college in Lynchburg Virginia, where she spent more than ten years in total as both a student and an employee, ending in 2012.
Then after starting counseling in 2020, Helga began injecting estrogen and progesterone in 2021 as part of her Hormone Replacement Therapy, which she called “magic”. She came out as trans at work in March of 2022 with the aforementioned Linkedin post, and shortly after underwent Facial Feminization Surgery performed by a Dr. Jacob Kuperstock out of Fairfax Virginia.
Now Helga’s Twitter bio says she is pansexual, meaning she can be emotionally or physically attracted to people regardless of their gender identity. Just so, Helga has a trans-girlfriend ten years her junior and a wife with technicolor hair like Joseph’s coat, who she shares a ten year old daughter with.
Helga says her daughter is “very good at supporting me and other trans people”, but she worries what will happen if the ten year-old thinks being straight is cool: “Ugh, how do I talk to my daughter about cisgender and straight people? I don't want her to start making choices this early. What if she thinks they're cool and tries to emulate them?”.
Helga’s tweets are cancel-culture proof
When Daily Wire personality Matt Walsh, the pundit behind 2022’s most talked about documentary What Is A Woman, tweeted observing that trans-people rarely date other trans-people, Helga called him a “dumbfuck”, seeing as how she herself has an extra-marital trans-girlfriend.
Helga has otherwise tweeted saying Christianity “teachers hate under the guise of love”, that some Republican lawmakers want trans-people “put in camps”, and that “insecure tech bros” will “circle jerk” one another for social media likes.
All speech that is shielded from the machinations of the corporate-cancel-culture-mob that has seen people fired from Maryland tech companies for saying things on social media nebulously considered “bigoted” and the like.
Helga even joked about an old Christian missionary she once knew, who suffered from Parkinson’s and took to writing a recurring email devotional through dictation once his fine motor skills left him. He kept his faith despite the trial, believing God would heal him. But in the end, “his faith wasn’t enough” she said, and he died. Or maybe, Helga quipped, “I killed him”.