I’ve had the good fortune to be working on cool technology for most of my career - robotics, development tools, agile, PPM, green IT, and more. While early in my career I was a hands-on software engineering and team lead, now I get jazzed about making teams better. For me, that means creating and enhancing product development organizations so that they can deliver value (products, features, or services) to their customers as efficiently as possible.
I started my career at Litton Itek Optical systems, where I lead the development of robotic control systems for the fabrication of optics for land and space based reconnaissance systems (yes, sometimes you actually have to use Calculus and Differential Equations at work). After several years of DOD 2167a and TQM, I fled DOD software development to client-server tools and business applications.
I landed at Easel Corporation in Burlington, Massachusetts as a senior technical consultant. After several years on the road using Easel’s object-oriented tools to build business applications, I returned to their engineering group to work with Jeff Sutherland on a next-generation development tool. Using Easel’s Smalltalk development tool, we built a first of its kind object-oriented tool that allowed users to build complete business systems without needing to code. There was a significant amount of experimentation required to get it right and traditional development approaches were in adequate. So we built our own process – Scrum.
Next, I leveraged my experience at Easel, both technology and methodology, at a start-up I co-founded called Vigor Technology. At Vigor, we applied agile techniques to deliver to market object-relational mapping products and services targeted towards Microsoft COM and DCOM developers. Vigor Technology was acquired by Rational Software in 1998.
Working for Rational was a fascinating experience. I held a variety of jobs that ranged from Director of Development where I managed a 60+ engineers spread across 5 time zones to architect of the a design patterns capability for the Rational Rose product line. In the latter role, I had the privilege of working directly with Grady Booch and Jeff McKenna during the inception of this new capability. The most surreal experience was an all day meeting with Grady, Jeff and I in Grady’s basement home office in Boulder, Colorado. I completed my tour at Rational as the Director of E-Business Solutions responsible for the enterprise software development capabilities of Rational’s flagship Rose and XDE products lines.
I left Rational in August 2002 to join Pacific Edge Software, a Project Portfolio Management vendor (PPM). As Vice President of Products at Pacific Edge, I was responsible for Product Strategy and Engineering for our product line and again have applied agile approaches to re-architect our products and processes. Using agile approaches based loosely on Scrum and XP, we drove over 20 product releases to market.
As seems to happen to all start-ups, Serena Software acquired Pacific Edge in October of 2006. I spent 3 years at Serena as VP of Products. My most gratifying achievements there were creating Serena’s 1st SaaS product/business and creating Serena’s first organically grown product in nearly 20 years.
I left Serena at the end of 2009 to join Verdiem as VP of Engineering. Verdiem is a company focused on helping IT reduce their energy costs by measuring and managing energy use of all network connected devices. There are many interesting analogies with IT energy efficiency and agile/lean development and I look forward to leveraging agile/lean practices to make IT and the businesses they support more efficient!