From the Blog

Jun
01

Agency Oasis

It’s official: After almost 10 years of pushing projects for some of the world’s best, boutique, digital design and development shops, I’m taking a big, bold step. I’ve been retained by Agency Oasis to begin my career as a full time Digital Strategist in their new Los Angeles office, and I couldn’t be more excited! I begin working with them on June 16th here in Boston while Jackie and I sell our condo and plan the move to LA. We plan to be there by Labor Day.

Leaving the team at ISITE Design was not an easy decision. I’ve never learned or grown as much as I have during my time working with Jeff Cram and Dave Wieneke and my teammates at ISITE are the greatest group of people I’ve ever worked with. That said, this decision was about my career and where I see it going in the long-term and Agency Oasis has given me an opportunity I simply could not pass up.

Outside of work, life is equal parts excitement, anticipation, and terror…Selling our home, changing careers, moving to a new city…Any of these things on their own would be incredibly stressful. Mixing them together all at once? This is not an experience for the faint-of-heart. But I’ve got an incredible partner in Jackie and I’ve done this before…With far less experience, resources, and wisdom than I have at my disposal today.

Leaving Boston…Also not an easy choice. These last ten years have been the best of my life because of the friends and community surrounding Jackie and I here in our hometown. It’s hard to quantify something like community…But you know it when you have it…And we do. But I don’t just have a job waiting for me in LA…My brother Max and some of my best friends in the world are in Southern California. Plus, they’ve got year round sailing in LA…And no snow. Life is good.

So now, as I make the leap from helping people build their digital customer experiences right, to helping people build the right digital customer experiences, I leave you with this…All the wisdom I have on digital project management summed up in a GIF reaction tumblr:

http://whatshouldwecallmeprojectmgmt.tumblr.com/

I’ve been contemplating a 2013 reflection post for a few days but then I feel embarrassed, which is really strange because I don’t have what most would consider to be a traditional relationship with self-awareness, shame, or regret. The problem is I’ve had a genuinely amazing year. Like, whoa…I didn’t think life could get this good. I do want to celebrate my success…But at a time when so many people are suffering in the world it feels a little weird. (Especially if everyone knew how many hours I spent doing little more than sitting around in my boxer shorts, drooling on myself in front of a video game.)

Flower Petals

Tying the knot
That said, there are some things too important not to commemorate. On the top of that list: Jackie and I got married, and it was like a fairy tale. Our closest friends and family traveled to St. Thomas with us and we tied the knot at what could aptly be described as a castle in the clouds on top of Wintberg Peak.  This video montage of the weekend does a pretty good job of capturing the spirit.

As for my bride…Mrs. DiMare (I love calling her Mrs. DiMare)…Charming, beautiful, and intelligent. These are just a few of the words I use to describe Jackie. But anyone who has met her a single time knows these self-evident truths. What you might not know is she’s also witty, hardworking, patient, inquisitive, open to new experiences, elegant, sophisticated, and one hell of a sailor.

Jackie proved to be a perfect first mate during our week long sailing honeymoon adventure in the Caribbean this year. That may sound trivial but nothing could be further from the truth. Jackie’s considerable skill on the water is the direct result of three years of classes, reading, and practice…All so we could have the honeymoon of my dreams…And I love her all the more for that sacrifice and effort.

As it turns out, She’s also a perfect little fish when it comes to snorkeling and you’ve never seen anyone so adorable in a diving mask.

Mi Famiglia
Whenever I look back at the most important moments in my life, my brother Max is always there with me and my wedding this year was no exception. But he has his own life as well, and I really want to take a moment to reflect on how deeply I admire the hard work and dedication that has led him to his most recent in a string of professional successes: Executive Chef of the Wilshire Restaurant in Santa Monica, CA. In his new role Max is leading a complete restaurant re-branding effort in addition to bringing his considerable talents with food to an entirely new menu. As has been the case in fine dining restaurants in California for the last 15 years, the Wilshire will benefit from the old-school, hard-working leadership that drives Max’s success wherever he goes.

Among those closest to me brother Max isn’t alone in the success department. My friends Brian, Julian, Mike, and Duane, all already successful in their own fields, are all taking risks and making moves that I can’t wait to see pay off. But more important than seeing them be successful in business, I love seeing them be successful with their families and friends. These men, and their lovely wives, are all people I feel immeasurably fortunate to have in my life because they show me every day what it means to be a good person, growing in poise, charity, and understanding.

Although getting married and the honeymoon were the high points of this year, there were many other epic moments and I do want a record so I can look back on this in 20 years and remember…Here are the highlights:

  • Traveled to Hawaii and spent an incredible long weekend with Max and Tommy and met Tommy’s family.
  • Traveled to Seattle and spent a weekend with Tommy and his family.
  • Traveled to Los Angeles and attended Alex Santana’s wedding, spent lots more time with brother Max
  • Got my Blue Belt from Back Bay Gracie Barra while consulting on their digital presence.
  • Made lots of new friends in the local sailing and Jiu Jitsu communities
  • Grew even closer to the friends I’ve had for years
  • Spoke at 3 industry conferences including DrupalCon and The Gilbane Conference
  • Sailed in countless regattas and took honors with the Sparkle Pony team
  • Sailed multiple times on the Cone of Silence, including the overnight Beringer Cup.
  • Got Google Glass and as a result hung out with Dana White and Joe Rogan.
  • Consulted on a new Boston area real-estate startup web business called Demorati.com
  • Continued my pro-bono work with various non-profit organizations
  • Helped my friend Lindsey Walsh build her business Soul Flower Wellness in exchange for countless hours of therapy.

So here’s the deal 2014: You’ve got some big shoes to fill. I’m going to keep working hard and doing my best to be a good man. Keeping things ship shape on my end, so to speak. Here’s to fortune continuing to blow a little wind in my sails…