I've enjoyed a diverse professional career, working in several industries in three countries. The common theme is a naive willingness to try new things and change up how things are done. Initially, this was driven mostly by hubris, and now it's really just driven by curiosity and a desire to know how things actually work.

After getting my MBA at Wharton, I set off to make my name at DuPont based in Moscow. These were heady times in Russia. We got there while the Soviet Union began to wobble and watched it crumble in 1991. The post-Soviet Russian economy was very much one massive startup with tons of ambiguity and lots of opportunity. Eventually, the trends changed and Russia became a dangerous place to do business unless you had political protection at the top.

We landed in Atlanta for my wife's job. Coming back to the US after 10 years in Russia was like landing from Mars. Thankfully, a Wharton alum took pity on me and gave me a start at an internet bank. I had always poked and prodded technology as it popped up in the workplace; this was my first foray into full internet business. Things changed quickly, and I found myself at a global distribution system (the guys who manage the travel agent bookings for the airlines). The industry was rapidly transforming to embrace online distribution, and we helped enable that, mostly by screen scraping green screens at scale. We powered all the top Online Travel Agencies with the exception of Travelocity.

My curiosity in airfare and online distribution led me to a small startup with the goal of making airfare pricing more transparent. We had proprietary technology that let us be the first to know if airfares were going up or down. We used this technology to advise consumers on whether or not they were getting a good deal and also to highlight super good prices.

Fast forward, and I've joined three guys in a room providing bulk email marketing tools to small businesses. At the time, internet technologies were still in their infancy. We were fortunate because it suddenly became possible by using open source technology and hosted servers to reach a worldwide audience from our small office in Atlanta. Through a combination of luck, innovative technology, and marketing, we were able to bootstrap the business and gain the lion's share of the email marketing for small business. The business sold for $12 billion in 2021.

Trying to recreate my previous email startup experience, I advised a website builder based in Hamburg. Unfortunately, while also bootstrapped, the founders made the wrong conclusions about the source of their success and lost their customer focus. I helped them reorganize and start over again with a new technology platform.

After that project, I focused on photography and advising a few companies here in the US. I've also been experimenting with rural economic development in northeastern Vermont. This spring, I went back to school at the local state school and have enjoyed tremendously being back in learning mode.

I'm at the stage in my career where I'm not driven solely by hubris and instead look to put my knowledge and scars to good use helping others.