FINDING THE REAL ME
“The whole of life is just like watching a film. Only it's as though you always get in ten minutes after the big picture has started, and no-one will tell you the plot, so you have to work it out all yourself from the clues.” - Terry Pratchett
This quote from my favorite author, Terry Pratchett, really speaks to me. It seems like most of my life has been a journey to find out who I am, and what I am doing here, and I feel like there are so many facets of me that I have yet to discover. I suspect this is not unusual!
As an American citizen of British origin who has worked and travelled very broadly around the world, I have had many unusual experiences, and gained a unique insight into the world of business and technology, while retaining my passion for music and other creative outlets. I hope that comes across – along with my deep-seated sense of fun, enthusiasm, and curiosity!
There is a phrase in Robert A. Heinlein’s Glory Road that has had a profound impact on my life: “dum vivimus vivamus”, which translates as “while we live, let us LIVE!”
It’s this sense of existence as fleeting that has driven me to seek out new experiences and push myself beyond my fears – why I have travelled extensively, became a qualified skydiver and scuba-diver, got married in a hot air balloon, rappelled down waterfalls in Costa Rica, backpacked across South America, jumped from the world’s highest commercial bungee jump, canoed down a tributary of the Amazon, and participated in America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride (100 mile bike ride in one day) for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (and become a parent!).
My passion for leadership and empowerment, and an almost intuitive understanding of technology, has helped me excel in my career beyond anything I had imagined
I’ve taken a similarly adventurous and enthusiastic approach to my professional life, starting out in my teens with a PC manufacturer, and working my way across a range of sectors including financial, manufacturing, professional services, software development, business incubation, and the Internet of Things (IoT), for companies like JPMorgan Chase, Solomon Partners, KPMG, and Blackstone. I also left the corporate world twice to found startups in the fields of web development and IoT, and secured a patent.
This diverse career background gives me a unique perspective on the use of technology to solve real-world business problems. Combined with my ability to forge partnerships, inspire loyalty and attract top-tier talent, this allows me to catalyze change and act as an enabler in this time of business transformation.
I have always loved listening to music. One day in about 7th grade, a group came to perform at our school – this was my first introduction to synthesizers, and I was hooked!
I learned to play keyboards, started to meet other musicians, joined a few bands and was soon performing in gigs fairly regularly. This was really profound for me; there's something about the connection between musicians playing together – where you understand each other, and can anticipate and improvise on the fly – that is deeply personal and emotional. I have learned more about music and collaboration from my fellow band members than I ever did from any lesson. Since then, I've also picked up guitar, bass, and drums, started writing songs, and set up a recording studio in my basement.
Named after the Nameless Knight of Arthurian legend, I’ve carried with me from an early age, a deep-seated set of personal values that underpin the way I behave, both personally and professionally
Commitment to these values carries across my business and personal life, and is part of the reason I've been able to recruit and retain diverse leadership teams, and get the best out of their different perspectives. It's also why I look for ways to help others with both funding and my personal time. This includes participation in Team In Training events, work-sponsored time helping underprivileged young men from the Eagle Academy record their own song, helping Habitat for Humanity to build a house, and working with Rise Against Hunger to package up food for children in need all over the world.
I’m keenly aware how fortunate I have been in my life, and am actively seeking out further opportunities to help others.