I have the unique perspective of a web developer for higher education and non-profits since the mid-1990s. Starting as a student coding HTML, I advanced to become a strong user advocate, moving away from coding while promoting content driven websites that worked for their users. I was an early adopter of click tracking, statistical analysis, focus groups, and user testing to create highly functional, efficient and user-friendly websites. The field of practice is now called UX, but the goals are the same: create great websites, mobile apps, and user experiences when interacting with technology.
Creating a customer support team from the ground up to support and train 35,000+ students, staff and faculty at Texas State University on web and teaching applications have honed my skills at training, communication, planning, problem-solving, and crisis management. Supporting good and bad software on a daily basis strengthened by a resolve to be a user advocate at every opportunity that presents itself – be it redesigning a web page, creating a new service to address a new need, or building a new mobile app.
I’m going in a new direction though and am completing my PhD in Environmental Geography. My dissertation researches how Texas craft cider makers use their products and tasting rooms to create a sense of belonging. Neolocalism though craft beverages.