My days of being a techie started early when my big bro let me play w/ his TI99, and moreso when we got a Commodore 64 as the “family computer.” I like to think of myself as one of the original PC gamers playing classics such as Wizardry, Bard’s Tale and Pool of Radiance, just to name a few. I was all about getting online, even in the days before the internet, dialing into free BBS’s and paid service providers like Q-Link on a 1200 baud modem. I distinctly remember my parents flipping out and confiscating the modem after seeing the phone bill (there were no unlimited plans back then :-p).
I joined the Army right out of high school and managed to talk my dad into letting me have our then-state-of-the-art 486 PC. This was when I started to really get into the nuts and bolts of computing. I would spend my downtime playing around with Windows 3.1 operating system files and reading forums on how to upgrade my hard drive and CPU. I thought replacing the Windows startup/shutdown screens and customizing the system sound files made me totally l33t!
I learned the power of programming after leaving the military and getting a job as an inventory clerk for a construction company in Chicago. Their “inventory system” was a large book where all of their purchases and sales were handwritten and manually “tracked.” I personally installed their first Windows PCs and introduced them to the wonders of spreadsheets and databases. I learned how to code VBA mainly to save myself from hours of writing and hand cramps. I automated all of their processes from start to finish, but then experienced the dark side of technology first-hand when I automated myself out of a job!
In my free time, I re-discovered my love of coding and started doing web development to help my friend and (amazing) graphic designer Desirai Labrada build websites. This is a passion I still carry with me and hope to grow through the years.
I decided to move to NYC and get a fresh start. I spent two years consulting with Bell Atlantic/Verizon as a VBA programmer before moving on to the financial industry. The last seven years of my life have been with JP Morgan where I was a Technology Project Manager and Business Analyst. Working both with users on the front-end user experience, as well as with engineering teams on the back-end infrastructure has given me a great overall view of the technology architecture.
Fast forward to today - I am still deeply in love with computers, the internet, and all of the rapidly evolving technologies that surround us. I left J.P. Morgan late last year to re-evaluate my priorities and focus on what is truly important in life. I hope to take my unique perspectives and apply them in ways that make people’s lives better and not just ways to make corporate management look good. I think we are living in very exciting times; there is a very real technological revolution going on! Technologies are rapidly converging to fill every aspect of our lives. There is so much going on, I can’t help but be excited about it!