Leveraging Technology to Mobilize Community

I help organizations leverage digital technologies to build active communities, more passionate customers, and engaged supporters.
Connect with me on LinkedIn

Leveraging Technology to Mobilize Community

I help organizations leverage digital technologies to build active communities, more passionate customers, and engaged supporters.
Connect with me on LinkedIn

How Can I Help?

I practice the art of using technology to bring people together, to achieve more.

Digital Strategy

A successful organization, or movement, relies not just on the passion of its supporters, but the ability to channel their energy.

I help organizations design online systems that will mobilize and empower their people. Whether in open-source, harnessing customer enthusiasm, or organizing social movements. Ask me about my work with FirstGiving, Habitat for Humanity and Sail for the Ocean

Web Development

It's easier to build a website or web app today than in any time in history. Yet it's also become so much more complex.

I still love hacking with web (and mobile web technologies). I bring up-to-date front-end expertise, and I have experience developing sites with various backend technologies. Ask me about my recent work with Cloudera, Latitude38.

Growth Marketing

Reaching and engaging new people has become increasingly data-driven and technical.

I can help organizations design, implement and measure marketing programs. Drawing from extensive experience creating web content and using enterprise marketing tools, I bring an agile approach to improving performance and creating results. Ask me about my work with Kinetica and Hortonworks

Past Work

  • Noteworthy
  • All
  • |
  • Community Apps
  • Marketing
  • UI/UX
  • Web Dev
Cloudera Docs Screenshot
Cloudera
Decoupled Javascript App for Documentation.
2019
Built a cohesive new system for presenting documentation from numerous disparate static sites that were the result of acquisitions and mergers.
Latitude 38
Bringing a Traditional News Site to WordPress
2019
Designed and built a publishing website on WordPress with user contributed content applications including custom plugins for classifieds and crew listings.
Kinetica
Product Marketing in High-performance Databases
2016-2018
Kinetica develops a high-performance analytics database. In my two years there, I created brand, wrote significant content and designed and grew the website using WordPress. Also involved with much of the marketing technology stack including marketing automation (Hubspot), SEM, Analytics and Social tools
Hortonworks
Running Web Marketing through an IPO
2013-2016
Over the course of a couple years, I built out and managed the website during the company's rapid growth from medium-sized startup through IPO and beyond.
RocketLawyer
2013
Working with the marketing team at RocketLawyer, I designed and prototyped a number of different landing page improvements for their incorporation business. More...
Summer Sailstice
Community Website on Drupal
2012
This is a community based site for ad-hoc creation of sailing events. It was a good excues to build out my skills with Drupal
OneBillionSeconds
Front-end Development
2012
A fun little site to calculate 'alternative milestones in life'. Integrates with Facebook API to also help you find when your friends will be 'one billion seconds' old. Changes to the FB API have since broken it, and I no longer maintain it.
Toyota
2012
Interactive wireframes to communicate ideas for an overhaul of one of Toyota's main web properties. Project with Organic. More...
Eaton
Front-end Development for Kiosks
2012
Eaton is a multinational 'power management' company. In support of some large exhibitions, we developed an interactive product directory for use with kiosks. Project with Elastic Creative.
Habitat for Humanity
2010-2011
A social-fundraising and blogging platform to enable Habitat for Humanity volunteers to fundraise and share information about their projects. Mpre...
FirstGiving
Facilitating Product Strategy and Agile Develoment
2010
I led a process to align stakeholders around a common product vision and introduced a plan to get there. Brought in an agile process to engineering. A tremendous success.
ApexMD
2009
We built ApexMD to help doctors find the most appropriate and available specialists within top medical centers. Designed to support physicians who need to make a referral, or patients who need a second opinion. More...
OneRecovery
Can Online Communities Support Recovery?
2009
One Recovery was designed as a social-network and monitoring system to provide support to people recovering from addiction. Developed prototype interfaces for testing and research.
Wrigley's Candystand
2008
Wrigley's Candystand was an online gaming site that builds brand awareness for Wrigley products. I took on a fairly technical project to improve the usability of administration for Wrigley's Candystand.com. More...
The Princeton Review
2008
I worked on several projects with The Princeton Revew, including a high profile one to for a UX and visual redesign of their college guides. More...
Pandigital
2008
Pandigital are the biggest manufacturer of digital photo frames. In 2008 I helped them design a touch screen interface to manage the functionality of the frame.
WhatWorks
2008
Tom is a friend of mine and needed a site that he could build out quickly and easily by himself. More...
Golden Gate Toastmasters
2007
Formerly President at Golden Gate Toastmasters, I rebuilt the website to aid recruitment. It worked. More...
The Spy of the Heart
2007
Robert Darr travelled through Afghanistan during the Soviet war. He's just published a book about his experiences, but also wanted to make it available online.
Yahoo (Green)
2007
Working onsite as a contractor for Rocket Communications, I helped Yahoo put together a website to raise awareness of climate change for Earth Day, 2007. We designed the site to motivate people to take action themselves to help reduce it. More....
EcoSynergy
2007
A system to enable individuals to understand the enviornmental impact of the products they buy.
Centurian Health
2007
Centurian Health distributes books to health care providers and large employers. This was a simple database driven site to let purchasers browse books, and place bulk orders.
IHS Energy
2006
IHS Energy (NYSE:IHS) is the largest provider of data and information to the energy industry. I helped IHS design and prototype their next generation of information services. More...
Trilliant Networks
2006
Trilliant built a mesh-network metering system managed through their 'Unity' product. I helped them refine their requirements, and then took them through a live-code prototyping process to figure out and test workflows and user-interface methods.
Sharp Real Estate
2004
Sharp Real Estate is a private real estate group. This is a brochure site with a small catalogue that can be updated by the client.
IronPlanet
2004
Each year IronPlanet sells hundreds of millions of dollars worth of used construction equipment to businesses all over the country through their online auction sites. I did a complete redesign of the marketing related pages and product templates. More...
DDRnet (SureCircle)
2004
DDRnet enables companies to self-insure their employees with dental, vision and health benefits. Their automated claim processing is unique and likely to make a huge impact in corporate benefits. I designed the system.
Daisy Arts
2004
Daisy Arts manufactured and sold high-end leather bound items including photo albums. I designed the website and set up an e-commerce solution.
Think Dynamics (IBM)
2003
Think Dynamics, recently purchased by IBM, is a leader in data center automation and software for just-in-time provisioning of servers. I was brought in to improve usability, and prototyped numerous changes to the user interface.

The fun is in the details....

Even after a decade of experience designing, developing and marketing digital products and services, I still find that many of the best ideas and great opportunities come from understanding how things work and knowing the craft.

I keep my web dev skills sharp. My toolkit spans experience design, web development, and growth marketing. I explore and validate new concepts with design tools including Sketch, Illustrator, XD, and pencil/paper.  I prototype and build apps using Vue, CSS, JS, Node, etc. I'm an experienced WordPress developer, building both sites and plugins. I have broad experience across the tech marketing stack including key tools such as Marketo, Hubspot, Google Analytics, Adwords plus more growth hacking with tools such as Phantom Buster etc.

Tech Skills

Musings & Insights

Design Sprint - Storyboarding

Design Sprints: Notes and Observations

January 30, 2020

I came across the Design Sprint concept recently as I licked my wounds after a particularly difficult web/app development project. The client, a friend, had needed to modernize a core product offering on their website. Their needs seemed fairly obvious. The existing system was clunky and out of date. A rebuild was going to offer…

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How to Work from the Beach

December 13, 2019

Before I can explain how you too can work from a remote beach at the end of the world, let’s start with some general ‘work from home’ guidance. In most modern companies you’ll find people in a variety of roles where ongoing face-to-face collaboration isn’t really required: software development, design, writing, accounting, sales, etc. With…

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Interactive Spatial Analysis with Massive Datasets

July 12, 2017

If you want to do analysis on large datasets with any sort of interactivity, if you want to visualize millions or billions of records—and then filter them and see results based on different groupings—then you’re going to need to solve a couple fundamental challenges

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Machine Learning and Predictive Analytics in Finance: Observations from the Field

May 1, 2017

Financial institutions are on the cutting edge of quantitative analytics. As the volume of data has grown, as analysis has become ever more sophisticated, and as pressure builds for timely results, computation is more and more of a challenge.

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Advanced In-Database Analytics on the GPU

January 24, 2017

With Version 6.0, Kinetica introduces user-defined functions (UDFs), enabling GPU-accelerated data science logic to power advanced business analytics, on a single database platform.

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Need another battery for your Mac? Try this

January 4, 2014

Ok, so here’s the problem. My laptop lasts for 2 hours, maybe three at the most, if I’m lucky. Sometimes you’re on a long flight and you want to get more work done. You need another battery (or a seat in business class!) With IBM/Lenovo laptops, it used to be easy to buy a modular…

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James rocks! He listens to what we want and implements our ideas, filling in the gaps with his experience of maintaining an active website. We're able to add new features to our site without falling back to yet another redesign. With us, he maintained a Google doc tracking all latest decisions along with his completion status. I enthusiastically recommend James for any kind of web or web-related work, and I look forward to working with him again.
Robert Crews, Cloudera
James is that very rare creature who can speak the languages of both business and technology fluently. I've worked with him on several projects in which he has significant contributions to both the business strategy and the code base. Having a consultant who can quickly put together functional prototypes with his own two hands is invaluable.
Ken Riley, Web Projects ManagerThe Princeton Review
From the start of our engagement, James was able to have an immediate impact on a rather complex CMS redesign project... almost as if he had been working with us side-by-side over the previous couple of years. His ability to quickly understand the legacy system and our business processes combined with his insights in user interface design he helped us build a new system that not only enabled us to manage our web applications more efficiently but also gave us the flexibility to grow the platform over time as needed. He was a critical factor in the success of the project and I would highly recommend him.
Billy Franz, Business Solutions ManagerWrigley
James displayed real leadership in driving a high-risk project that required diverse groups, geographically and philosophically, to agreement by creating lasting relationships and diving into the project with both feet on day one.
Dave McMurtry, SVP StrategyHabitat for Humanity
James is a gifted internet professional who brings an insightful, innovative, and results-driven approach to product strategy and development. He combines keen product intuition and strong technical knowledge with a commitment to understanding and delivering to the customer's needs. James is an inspiring leader who delivers both quality and rapid results. He has been a strong partner to the entire team at FirstGiving and key contributor to the business. It's been a pleasure to work with and learn from James.
Nancy Dickenson, CEO FirstGiving
James not only designed a fantastic-looking search site for ApexMD, he was instrumental in the invetion of our search process. He quickly got his head around the complexities of the advanced healthcare delivery and how it needed to be packaged so that it was easy to understand for patients yet comprehensive enough for medical professionals.
Spencer Punter, CEOEmphasis Search
I am delighted with how James came in and worked with our team onsite to complete this project. His hard work to meet such a tight deadline is greatly appreciated. He went above the call of duty and the results show it.
Colin Sankey, Head Efficiency Unit Hong Kong SAR Government
James is an extraordinary professional UI designer and a web application expert. He is able to engage with clients to quickly understand their product domain, user needs, product goals, and overall project technical capabilities. James creates innoovative solutions using new and standard UI conventions providing clients with applications that delight their users. Clients are always happy with their experience working with James because he is professional, charming, intelligent and creative. Working with James is a pleasure and a privilege.
Michal-Anne Rogondino, CEO Rocket Communications