I was a contractors assistant at my fathers contruction business, Hoyt & Son Construction. I learned how to measure twice, cut once, and swing a hammer. I also learned (2d) Autocad and helped with blueprints.
My best friend and I dreamed up, planned for, borrowed money for, and started VRcade, a virtual reality arcade in Jackson, Michigan. This was my first experience with investors and raising money. We shut down the business after three months and did construction work to pay back the investors.
I started Legend Computer Services to do computer consulting work for friends and family.
In 1998 I went to work for Quality Computing in Hillsdale, refilling inkjet printer cartridges. I moved into a computer technician role within a week and became the lead technician in 1999 when my mentor, the previous lead technician, moved to a new state and a new job. I was in charge of building, installing, maintaining, and repairing computers and computer networks.
I revived Legend Computer Services and built a loyal customer base of individuals, families, and businesses.
In 2005 my old boss from Quality Computing and I purchased a failing computer retail and service business and together we turned it around in 18 months. In the black and growing we added a third partner and bought a storefront. I sold my share of the company to my two partners when I left to do software development full-time.
My first full-time gig as a software developer was at Ordered List in South Bend, Indiana. We built three products, harmonyapp.com, speakerdeck.com, and gaug.es in addition to consulting for companies like Newtoy and eventually Zynga.
In 2011 GitHub acquired Ordered List and I’ve been working for GitHub since. I’ve helped on a number of internal projects and customer facing projects as a developer, lead engineer, or team leader. I am currently a Senior Engineer on the Security team helping build a platform free of spam and bad actors.