One of my first projects at Driehaus was to set up external email. At the time, emails were strictly internal. I built a system that transferred external emails once per hour, which was high tech for that time. I configured the initial firewalls and security and then took over responsibility for the internet and email servers. Shortly after, every employee had an internet connection at their desk, allowing the firm to be ahead of the technology curve. Not long after, I gathered all IT infrastructure functions and led this division of the firm.
Prior to Driehaus, I was working for the government as a Nuclear Engineer on special assignment in Pittsburg. I was looking to move back to Illinois after the birth of my first child. I intentionally wanted to move into the private sector to afford me a more efficient work environment that wasn’t continuously stifled by red tape. It was 1996, and around that time, the internet was just being introduced. I would download the Chicago Tribune job classified ads and print them out. When I came across an opening for an IT Communications Specialist at Driehaus, I thought it was a great opportunity and I turned out to be the right fit for the firm.
If it plugs in, I’m in charge of it!
I would advise being flexible as things can change directions quickly. Also, it is important to not be an expert at one thing but be good at everything.
It is essential to operate with the highest integrity and be ready for anything. Each day brings a new set of challenges, so gathering knowledge about as many relevant areas as possible has equipped me with the best tools for creating solutions as they surface. Additionally, having a strong understanding of IT and the overall business intersects is vital to success.
So many things, but in short, I’m responsible for cybersecurity, connectivity, servers and applications.
I really enjoy the work and the company even though it can sometimes be stressful. Having been in the public sector before, I enjoy the level of responsibility at Driehaus, knowing that there are no life-threatening risks like there were when I was responsible for two nuclear reactors. I enjoy the smaller team and company feel that Driehaus offers. I find it’s easier to get things done and be productive at a firm our size and the overall culture aligns with my values and desires.
The day in 1997 that Richard told us he was flying the entire company to Puerto Rico. The firm had just crossed one billion dollars in assets under management for the first time and he wanted to show his appreciation – in a big way. This was a total surprise and the invite was extended to each employee’s family, so my wife was able to join me in the celebration. It was a nice trip away from the office with colleagues and families that helped build and strengthen our relationships away from the office and was a tremendous reward for everyone’s hard work. The experience was a demonstration of Richard’s generous spirit that extends not only to his commitment to charitable causes but also to those that aid in the success of the business.
I enjoy the outdoors - mountain biking, skiing, going to the beach and spending time with family. My wife and I are recent empty nesters and just moved to a smaller home in a suburb outside of Chicago that is very walkable and provides easy living. We have plans to buy a lake house in the future for a place to connect with nature and disconnect from our often-busy lives. I will, however, be installing WiFi!
I would teach math and physics at the junior college or high school level.
Director of Technology Infrastructure
Began at Driehaus: 1996View Full Bio