Gary is our Developer Extraordinaire at WE·DO. He not only keeps the internet from breaking, but the entire team in stitches with his zany streams of consciousness, ability to get in a solid workout while on Zoom, and secret powers to shapeshift his beard into any decade, most notably Victorian-era chops.
Born and raised all over the world as a military brat, Gary was formally trained as an Environmental Scientist but traded that dorky title for another after realizing he’s happiest in the world of web development.
After some self-described “lean years of self-taught coding/developing,” Gary snagged a spot on the WE·DO team where his resourcefulness, humor, and solid work ethic contribute to a working atmosphere where “Is it Quittin’ Time yet?” and “TGIF” simply don’t exist.
Here’s of Fly-By Q&A with Gary:
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Typically it’s coffee and the driving paranoia that the day is getting away from me already. The enemy is awake, making moves, maneuvering on me…
Setting: cocktail party in a foreign country. Describe your job in the simplest way possible to someone who may or may not understand you:
Ever been on the internet? I make that! I know a secret-code language that I use to talk to computers and make them show you all the cool stuff you get to see on the internet.
What three words would you use to describe your role?
What are your biggest professional challenges?
Building time into my daily life to study the amount that I want. My job is all about learning and adapting as tech changes, and new tools are introduced to our workflow.
If you could choose anyone who would you pick as your mentor?
Outside of anyone in our company, I would choose Jocko Willink. Something about his intensity and open-mindedness just makes me want to conquer all the problems.
What do you like most about your job?
The unity that has been built among the team. I think it really increases effectiveness and the drive to get tasks done and done well.
What advice would you give to recent new hires?
Be LOUD about wanting to do work and contribute. This is a buffet more than a restaurant, and you need to go back for seconds if you’re still hungry.
What’s your most memorable face-palm moment?
Does the entirety of my 20’s count? If I had to be specific, I would say the time that I decided I was going to get back into skateboarding after over a decade of never touching a board. I promptly tore my ACL, trying something I “used to be able to do, and it was easy back then, so yeah, I got this!”
Famous last words…
What is your motto or personal mantra?
I have a few, so I’ll select a couple:
“Be there to see it.” This one drives me to live healthy; gotta take care of yourself to see all the life you can.
“Good.” This one is a bit vague, but it works like this:
“Oh, you have a complex problem on your shoulders that’s holding a client’s needs up? Good, get smarter, learn more, and think better.” or: “You worked too long on the wrong way to approach completing a task? Good, revamp your approach, be more methodical, learn why that happened, and do better work on the new tasks at hand.”
“Witness.” This comes from Karsa Orlong in a series of fantasy books called, “The Malazan Book of the Fallen.” He is a warrior of extreme strength, determination, and will and often takes on battles where the odds are incredibly stacked against him.
As his sort of war cry, he will often turn to someone nearby and say “Witness” as he rushes in. He says this in defiance of the odds stacked against him, and I love to apply this in my own life regarding my dreams, desires, needs, wants, etc.
If I have a goal or dream that seems outrageous and there are people around me saying I can’t do it, I just reply, “Witness”.
What’s your favorite blog?
Is Stack Overflow a blog? I’m going to say yes. That’s my favorite one.
What’s your favorite line from a film?
“God has blessed us so much that I can’t afford to feed you anymore” – Monty Python’s Meaning of Life.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Nashville Style Hot Chicken. WHEW LAWD I want some. One time I spent so much time talking about it that my phone is still advertising fried chicken to me.
Fill in the blank:
At WE DO, I am happiest helping clients get their ideal website that works smoothly and feels good to use.