Founder and President of Cygnus Systems, Inc., in Taylor. Cygnus, an information technology company that provides Microsoft network integration and support services, just celebrated its 20th anniversary. The company recently upgraded the Detroit Federation of Teachers’ total network and its infrastructure support. With more than 25 years of business and technology experience, Burkulas has worked closely with many companies across an array of industries. He has served as a technical advisor and integrator in designing computer network systems and in providing solutions to business challenges through the use of computer and communications technology. Burkulas has established a number of strategic alliances in different areas of technology, which has allowed him to focus on his strengths, work with other companies that do the same, and align resources to provide a holistic solution to his clients. A Microsoft Certified Consultant, he is an active member of the National Computer Association and has received an “Outstanding Accomplishment” certificate for his work. A long-time member of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, he is currently president of the Detroit chapter. Burkulas has a bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Wayne State University.

WHERE BORN: "Wyandotte."

MOST INFLUENTIAL PERSONS: "My father. I learned to honor and respect everyone. He had a code of conduct of being open and gracious. He had many friends, and he couldn’t wait to take care of other people. He was always the first person to greet you and was undeniable in his efforts to honor you. He was always ready to take risks when he knew the rewards were worth it. In those aspects, I’ve modeled myself after him."

LAST BOOK READ: "Strengths-Based Leadership by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie.”

WORDS THAT DESCRIBE ME: "Loyal, committed, driven, activated, self-assured."

WHERE MY FIELD/INDUSTRY IS HEADED: "Business today has become increasingly dependent on information technology, especially on mission-critical applications like email, remote access, and Web-enabled programs. Understanding the business implications for implementing technology, not just for the sake of technology, is how we serve our clients. With all of the demands of business, we need a process of implementation and support to maintain high interaction and communication. The industry has more tools that assist by providing remote monitoring of systems or integrating a variety of technologies to serve new needs."

FAVORITE TECHNOLOGICAL GADGET: "Today, it’s the BlackBerry Storm."

FAVORITE PLACE: "The island of Santorini in Greece. It’s absolutely magical, a place like no other."

FAVORITE HOBBIES: "Boating, fishing, any water sports."

FAVORITE FOOD:"Almost anything that swims."

MY HIDDEN TALENT: "I don’t know if it’s hidden, but motivating people to achieve."

HOW I WANT TO BE REMEMBERED: "As an example of a good human being; someone who’s learning, growing, and contributing while having fun in the process."