She became a MUFON Field Investigator in 2009 and was named top investigator for Michigan in 2013. Cisneros will be the newest edition to the Communications Department, and will continue the MUFON One-On-One Interviews.
Journal: Tell me about your interest in UFOs and what brought you to MUFON.
Cisneros: My interest in UFOs probably started when I was around age 10 when I first witnessed my first sighting, one of about four. At the time I really had no idea that what I had seen had a name…UFO, but since I’ve always been a curious person, always needing to know “why”, this unknown thing captured my interest. That was in the early 60s. This was before the Barney and Betty Hill case began gaining interest. In the late 1970s I started looking at the subject a little more in depth, having seen Chariots of the Gods. After this, I started reading up on the subject, reading some of the early works by Bud Hopkins, Raymond Fowler and others. What struck me most about Chariots of the Gods was the photographs, even more so than the theories proposed by Von Daniken.
I had known about MUFON for some time and was interested in joining way back when, but at the time I was busy raising a family and working, so I kind of put it on the back burner. When I stopped working full time, I felt I had the time to devote to finding out more about UFOs. This is when I decided to join MUFON and become a field investigator.
Cisneros: I’ve been with the organization for about six and-a-half years. I passed and became an investigator in May 2009. While I enjoyed reading the Journals, of course; I was interested in becoming a field investigator right from the get-go, so as soon as I got my manual I began studying for it. I think it took me about a month before I was ready to take the exam. So far, I have investigated over 50 Michigan cases.
Journal: Is there anyone at MUFON that you have never actually met that you would just like to sit down and talk with?
Cisneros: That’s a tough one, as there are so many interesting people in MUFON who have had many fascinating experiences that I would love to hear more about as well as those who have dedicated their time in order to find out more about this enigmatic phenomenon. I have great admiration for them and what they have achieved in bringing this subject to a wider audience. If I had to pick one, though, I think it would have to be one of the early founders of MUFON, Walter H. Andrus, Jr. With his expertise in this field by working with MUFON for over 30 years, I’m sure he would have had a wealth of knowledge to impart as well as some very interesting stories about his years at MUFON. I also feel a connection with him as he and I share a commonality in that I also lived in San Antonio.
Journal: What do you feel is the most understudied corner of Ufology?
Cisneros: I think there is a wealth of information about craft sightings and “lights in the sky” as hundreds of reports come in every day from around the world and are investigated, so I feel MUFON, as a scientific organization has done an excellent job of gathering and interpreting the data that is gleaned from these reports. In addition, the reports of close encounters which seemed to have increased through the years are being thoroughly investigated, so I really don’t know if there is an area that is being ignored to my knowledge. I guess what I would have to say is that I have a few of my own theories and questions about the study of UFOs that may or may not be something that needs to be studied but may be addressed in some way. Basically to those debunkers who feel there is no evidence for UFOs, it could be pointed out to them that if there was nothing to it, the countries of the world, besides the U.S. would not have spent years of investigating these reports and chronicling the thousands of reports worldwide; which have included the UK, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Israel, to name a few. Given the documented reports of anomalous aircraft by witnesses who are trained observers, i.e., pilots, military personnel, and police officers, it stands to reason that it there is indeed evidence that unidentified aerial objects that defy the abilities of known conventional aircraft are in our airspace. If they do not belong to us, or any other country of the world, to whom do they belong? If someone is flying about in the skies with capabilities that exceed the capabilities of our modern militaries of the world’s industrialized nations, it should concern us enough to find that answer.
Journal: Any advice to someone new to the field?
Cisneros: I would tell anybody wanting to take up field investigation work to always keep an open mind, but also keep a skeptical eye open. Often people in this field are called “believers” of the phenomenon. On the contrary, to be a good investigator, you need to have a questioning mind and a healthy skepticism. Also be thorough and exacting in gathering data as well as in reporting it as I don’t think it’s good science to make up your mind about a case before investigating and doing all the research. For the most part, the majority of cases I have personally dealt with have involved misidentified objects, crafts or cloud formations, as well as the occasional outright hoax. It is uncommon to find the true “unknown”, but it does happen, and this is part of the thrill as an investigator.
Journal: Being a woman employed and trained in the I.T. and data world, has your work experience helped with your field investigations?
Cisneros: Yes, actually I think being employed in the document and data world has been helpful to me when I need to navigate the web when conducting online searches as well as being able to weed out the pertinent data from what information that doesn’t apply. I think the work I did at local hospitals as a medical document transcriber gave me a better sense of the importance of accurate reporting and documenting what information I gathered while doing my investigations as well as proper documentation. Working as a medical assistant taught me about data and specimen collection and documentation as well as perspective on how the witnesses feel when reporting their sightings; sometimes they have concerns about confidentiality, or they are fearful of speaking with the investigators about their sighting or experience. In a way, the witnesses share a similarity with people seeking medical help, in that they both need a compassionate ear when relating their experiences. I feel this is one aspect of my past work experience that has carried over in my work at MUFON that has helped me to be a good investigator.
Journal: To add to that, you will be MUFON’s newest Communication Team member and will begin writing the Journal’s One-On-One interviews. Why don’t you tell everyone a little bit about yourself and what you feel you can bring to the table.
Cisneros: I am originally from Laredo, Texas and as I mentioned earlier, lived in San Antonio for a few years when I was a teen, but relocated permanently to Michigan in the early 1970s. I worked for many years in the healthcare field as a medical assistant, medical word specialist and document transcriber/editor. I have a Bachelor of Science degree based in the health sciences. Most my professional career was focused on the medical field for many years, but early on, had a keen interest and passion for subjects like ancient archaeological artifacts, esoteric subjects, and of course UFOs. I have taught seminars on such subjects as symbology, gematria, and astroarchaeology basics. I have a small independent research company called Cygnus Research where I do research on a variety of interests. I was grateful to have earned the spot of top investigator for Michigan in 2013 and I continue to strive to give 100% when working on my cases. My work for MUFON has been both academic and personal, as I seek answers to my own sightings as well as seeking answers for others who have experienced something they cannot understand and does not fit in with their worldview. What I feel I can best offer MUFON is my sincere belief that Ufology is a genuine science and that this phenomenon…whatever it is, needs to continue to be investigated for all of us; until we get the answers that so many thousands of people have asked about UFOs.
Journal: Many thanks to Marie for taking the time to sit down with me for this month’s edition of MUFON One-On-One. Welcome to the Communications Department, and we look forward to seeing your work!
If you would like to be interviewed or make a nomination for the MUFON One on One, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.