Team (and World),
Normally we leave the celebration of anniversaries as an internal affair, but I thought, what the heck...why not give these 4 awesome summer camp vets some well-deserved recognition and get the story out to the world? Who knows, with team members like this, we might just save the world!
Alexa & Kathryn (the mom of iD) Celebrating 12 Years @ iD
Alexa co-founded iD Tech Camps along with my mom, Kathryn. They conceived the idea in 1998, formed the business in 1999, and the rest, as they say, is history. Starting a business is never easy. But these two overcame much adversity in the start-up days. There was little access to capital, so they had to really, truly bootstrap. They slept in cars to save on hotel costs. They drove thousands of miles instead of flying. They drove brochures around from school to school to get the word out about this new tech camp. And they did it all for way too long without getting paid a dime. In short, they bet the farm on the idea. Bigger summer camps were trying to throw hand grenades into the fledgling start up. But those camps didn't know just how tenacious these two smart, charming women were (and are). The lesson here is that people can knock you down, hold you down, and try to keep you down...but if you truly believe in something, go after it. Don't listen to the people who say you can't and you shouldn't.
Jimmy—Celebrating 10 Years
Jimmy came to us 10 years ago in a data entry position in our "office above a garage." The office was about 500 square feet, had one 28k internet connection (seriously), no A/C, but we survived. Jimmy dutifully commuted up to the office in the Santa Cruz Mountains above Silicon Valley, and one day, several months later, mentioned, "I know something about building websites." Jimmy, as our 3rd full-time employee, was then removed from his data entry job, promoted to web manager, and now manages our Web & Creative Department. I am grateful everyday that Jimmy is on our team. I work with him (and his team) on our product launches, and he constantly evolves our web presence. As you might see from his photo, Jimmy is also big into birds, which is a fun and creative outlet. Here's to 10 more! Jimmy, thank you so much for all you've done since day one. It's not just about the web. It's about building a company--and believing in something. And you have never lost sight of that. You have helped build our culture from day one. This place wouldn't be iD without you!
MaryAnn--Celebrating 8 Years
A product of Carnegie Mellon University, MaryAnn knew little about the summer camp market before joining our team. I remember interviewing MaryAnn, and a comment she made always stuck with me. "I want to work for a company that cares. A company that really wants to be the best." Most people who work here at iD Tech Camps know that we are always pushing ourselves to get better--to make our camps better, the user experience better...which leads me to the next point. 3 years ago, we began a "Next 10" initiative to build out our systems to accommodate the next generation of technologies--and to create a more compelling platform for our internal and external users. Our ideas were ambitious--we didn't want to use off-the-shelf products because we wanted the user experience to be defined on our terms. Well, as you might know, 60% of major enterprise software development projects have major delays, run well over budget, or get scrapped completely. (I actually bet the number is more like 95%...but that's a story for another day). It is now 2011, and we are using the new system, and it is exciting to see our company shift its thinking, for the better. Thank you, MaryAnn! This place wouldn't be iD without you!