Professional


Since 2016

I am currently the Chief Technology Officer at Vendavo, a global software and services company headquartered in Denver. Our company is focused on helping enterprises maximize growth and profitability by identifying and harvesting margin improvement opportunities.

I have principal responsibility for the Engineering and User Experience teams for which the majority of time is spent developing and communicating technology vision and strategy, ensuring organizational alignment with business goals, and relentlessly optimizing how we work together.

The Engineering and User Experience teams are geographically dispersed among the following locations:

Joining the company in August 2016, I directed most of my efforts on structural and process changes that essentially modernized the way we develop products. A focus on cycle time reduction, build automation and technical excellence has given our teams significant advantage over competitors that continue to operate with a traditional mindset.

Today, the product and engineering teams are concentrating much of their effort on expanding the suite of capabilities in our commercial excellence platform, which includes development of a highly differentiated intelligence substrate.

Vendavo was acquired by Francisco Partners, a global private equity firm, in October 2014.

In August 2021, a new strategic round of investment was secured from both Accel-KKR and Francisco Partners.


Since 2014

I am also an angel investor and technical advisor for a health care startup based in Kansas City, SMRxT, advising on matters related to software architecture, product strategy, information security and regulatory compliance.


1991 to 2016

I was previously Vice President and Engineering Fellow at Cerner, a global health care information technology company headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. At the time of my departure, the global reach of Cerner solutions spanned more than 30 countries.

Prior to leaving, I had executive responsibility for a very talented software infrastructure group that designed and built web-scale services primarily centered around authentication, authorization, auditing, administration, and petabyte-sized data ingestion and processing. In addition to my day job, I spent a significant amount of time focused on strategic technology and architecture imperatives with an emphasis on accelerating the transition from traditional enterprise applications to service-based solutions and platforms.

I have an extensive background in software development, particularly in the areas of application architecture, scalable computing and distributed systems. During my 25 years with Cerner, I had been instrumental in leading the company through pivotal shifts in technology and architecture, and had also been influential in promoting the use of more collaborative and nimble engineering processes.

In 2008, I was awarded the Engineering Fellow designation in recognition for a number of distinguished technical contributions.


Personal

My first exposure to computing happened around the age of 10 when my father brought home an HP-97 calculator, which he used at work to run curve fitting programs to assist in the optimization of manufacturing processes.

HP-97 Calculator

This particular calculator was capable of storing programs on a magnetic strip, which can be seen dangling at the left of the LED display. It could only be programmed by expressing computations in postfix notation, so I became somewhat familiar with the idea of using a stack for evaluation. It was also perhaps a gentle introduction to automata theory.

Access to personal computers in the late 1970's was quite difficult, but I managed to convince the school principal to grant me access to the only computer on the entire premises, an Apple II. I would furiously write BASIC programs on paper during weeknights, then spend the weekends banging away at the keyboard trying to make them come alive. Ah, how things have changed, but those were formidable days.

While attending my sophomore year at Northwest Missouri State University, I spent most of my free time developing a text editor in Turbo Pascal 3.0. Not that the world needed more text editors at the time, but this was more about learning and exploring and building something nontrivial. In retrospect, this single project contributed more to my professional success than any other academic endeavor. Unfortunately, the original source code has been misplaced.

I spent about 18 years doing hardcore software engineering, much of that focused on building cross-platform middleware, protocols, services, tools, compilers and management applications. Designing middleware around a single code base to run on VMS, AIX, Windows and Linux teaches you a lot about portability and how to design systems. I realized much later in my career that great software design is a blending of art and science, though for me, it was something that seemed to come naturally.


Education

BS in Computer Science and a minor in Mathematics from Northwest Missouri State University.


Projects

I used to spend a bit of my spare time working on a few open source projects written in Scala. The primary intention was to learn functional programming while doing something useful and nontrivial.

Another project worth mentioning is a relatively simple compiler and interpreter I developed for instructional purposes as part of a Cerner developer conference talk. The goal was getting attendees interested in functional programming, so the compiler was implemented in a purely functional style (no side effects) using Scala. I suggested during the talk that attendees port the compiler to their favorite functional language. I am currently working on a Haskell implementation after suspending that effort several years ago. Both Kotlin and Clojure versions have already been implemented.

During the COVID lockdown of 2020, I developed a renewed interest in electronics, specifically the intersection of digital circuits and software. This ultimately led to building a GPS-synchronized clock using an Arduino board as the micrprocessor.

Other projects can be found on my GitHub repository.


Interests

  • Distributed systems
  • Functional languages
  • Electronics
  • Cycling
  • Fitness
  • Travel
  • Cooking
  • Exploring new dining experiences
  • Searching for the perfect cocktail

Travels

Below are some of the notable places I have traveled over the course of my life.