I’ve been interested in technology since elementary school. My first computer was a Commodore 64 that my dad and I drove over an hour to buy at Toys R Us in Louisville, KY when I was in grade school. To this date, I think that drive home seemed to take the longest of any drive I’ve every done before or since. It was on that C64 that I got my first exposure to programming–copying code out of the back of the Commodore magazine and hoping it worked after 2 hours of typing. Then there was the time when I learned the “save early and save often” lesson the hard way, but that’s a story for a different day.
I got my first paying programming job at the company I went to work for after I separated from US Air Force active duty in 1998. I was the first full time web developer that the company had ever hired. Back then the “Webmaster” title was all the rage. My department head referred to me as “the webmeister” in meetings–a name that stuck and was the name of my future consulting company for well over a decade.
I’ve been blessed to have worked with and be mentored by some amazing people along my journey. These days I don’t write production code any more. Oh, I piddle around with automation code or pet projects just to give myself the illusion of staying current but getting semi-colons in the right place isn’t what gives me my rewards these days.
I’ve come to understand that I get tremendous amounts of satisfaction from helping engineers be successful. Whether that means helping figure out a way to improve a process, finding new tools and methodologies to make their lives easier, or simply helping promote the work their doing so they get their much-deserved recognition, those are the kinds of things that drive me these days.
As you might imagine, these days I mainly focus on managing engineering teams, processes and platforms and I’m having the time of my life.