Where I Was

I was born in Greensboro, North Carolina and attended UNC-Greensboro, where I majored in German and Linguistics. I went to Bloomington, Indiana to study Germanic Linguistics, earning an MA before jumping ship and working towards an Master of Information Science. As is often the case, I ended up staying in Bloomington a lot longer than expected. My first full-time career, which lasted about 5 years, was with The Center for Postsecondary Research and it's associated project, including The National Survey of Student Engagement. The position was amazing. The people were friendly, hard working, and very supportive.

Where I Am

Born in Greensboro, NC, I currently live and work in Carrboro, North Carolina, a terrific little town just off to the side of Chapel Hill, home to UNC-CH. I work for the university nearby, in an office that is right in downtown Carrboro and minutes from my house. Every day, I feel extremely fortunate for my living and working situation.

I am the Senior Web Developer at UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center's CIPHR office. Our systems team supports research analysts and primary investigators in cancer outcomes research projects by providing web development, application programming and data analysis and processing services. Our website is built on a custom framework on a Linux-Apache-Oracle-PHP stack, and makes heavy use of JavaScript, including a variety of libraries like Dojo, jQuery, Google Maps and Charts. My work also involves a 40% appointment in Information Science, where I support the Carolina Health Informatics Program, doing WordPress development, workflow automation and occasional programming support consultation for the graduate students in the program as needed, as well as an additional 20% appointment at the Sheps Center for Health Services Research, where we work primarily on applications using the Laravel PHP Framework.

I also operate a small freelance web development business called True Wind Technology, which works on a variety of projects, including developing and maintaining WordPress websites, creating interactive tools for academic projects, and custom-coding applications as needed using tools like WordPress, PHP, Python, JavaScript, SQL, Vagrant and Shell scripts.

What I Like

My keenest technological interests center around merging and aggregating disparate information into coherent data sets that can be visualized as charts and maps in order to make messy information more easily consumable. I love designing custom applications, combining types of information you might not normally put together, and enhancing user experience through clever visualization and interface design.

I also very much enjoy developing applications that solve issues in real life, whether it has to do with dating, real estate, the college search, or managing an illness. Similarly, I really enjoy developing workflow automation tools and solutions to help developers and other project team members better focus on the work they have to do than they setup they have to do to get started.

Where I Want to Be

I'm currently pretty comfortably employed, so I'm not looking for a lateral move into yet another development gig unless it involves upward mobility or a substantial pay increase. I very much hope that my next career move will have to step me out of that comfort zone and into a position where I can participate more directly in team leadership and project management, get more heavily involved in UX Design in the earliest phases of work, and mentor others while still keeping my hands dirty.