Aaron Holbrook joins 10up

I’m Aaron Holbrook, and I’m incredibly excited to be 10up’s newest Web Engineer, claiming the mantle as the first Chicago 10upper!

I’ve crafted websites since 1998, when I was convinced my GeoCities site would light the world on fire. Since resetting my expectations, I found a passion for HTML, CSS and PHP and even built my own content management system in 2004, only to stumble upon WordPress shortly thereafter.

After earning a degree in Computer Science and Mathematics from Augustana College, I became the full-time “webmaster” for a hospital. After spending 5 years managing content, I realized that my passion was building, not just managing, websites. Before leaving in 2011, I rebuilt the entire hospital website on WordPress.

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Meet Dave Ross, our newest Senior Web Engineer

I’m Dave Ross, and I’m thrilled to be joining 10up as a Senior Web Engineer, joining a handful of other Boston-area 10uppers.

While I’m always on the lookout for new and exciting technologies, the WordPress community continues to wow me with its dedication to user experience and support for beginners and power users alike. 10up impressed me in much the same way, by combining top-notch technical skills with an understanding of business, design, and user experience. The enthusiasm here is refreshing and contagious.

I grew up in the Chicago area, where I received a Bachelor’s degree in computer science from Roosevelt University. My coursework there ran the gamut from building computers out of raw logic gates to understanding the communication protocols that let the Internet support billions of people online every day. But the web still remains my favorite environment for stretching my engineering muscles.

I’ve been building web sites for almost two decades and love the helping others find a global voice online. I’ve built interactive museum displays for a major Chicago-area museum, web sites explaining pioneering research at particle physics labs around the world, and the online home for a summit of world leaders… as well as plenty of sites that brought small businesses and not-for-profits to a bigger audience. You might have seen me speak at Chicago-area meetups or WordCamp Boston, or providing WordPress support online. Over the years, I’ve released a few WordPress plugins, and I’m starting to get involved with improvements to the core software itself.

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Megan Gray brings first class creative, strategy chops to 10up

I’m Megan Gray and I love 3 things: my family, great design, and WordPress. (Ok, and all the people who share my love of WordPress). I’ve been designing for as long as I can remember, or since I got my first copy of Photoshop in the 90s, and professionally for nearly 10 years now. During that time, I’ve had the privilege of executing design strategies for clients including Johns Hopkins University, Hilton Hotels, Arlington Department of Public Health, and the public television series Roadtrip Nation.

Before I got serious about design, I was a writer and editor for Washington, DC newspapers, a marketing strategist for Johns Hopkins University, and a freelance WordPress designer. My diverse background in all aspects of creating and managing brands influences my unique approach to web projects, and I look forward to bringing that to the table at 10up.

Megan Gray Samples

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Community rockstar Drew Jaynes joins 10up

I never seriously considered web development to be a career path, since tinkering with it off and on as a hobby for nearly 10 years. It all began when I built a static tournament portal for a Yahoo! pool league I played in when I was 16. In 2008, many websites and lessons learned later, I retrofitted my college newspaper’s website to run on WordPress. Needless to say, I was hooked.

When I started actively contributing to the project in 2010, the community’s vibrancy left an impression. Here you have this mass of publishers, developers, designers and volunteers all working to make something that was already great even greater. I’d found my people.

These days, when I introduce myself to people at community events like WordCamps, the top two responses are: “Oh, so you’re DrewAPicture! I’ve seen your tweets or your work on [insert project here],” or, “Drew Jaynes … now where have I heard that name before?!” The answer to that second question, if you’re wondering: probably all over the place.

A big part of what drew me to 10up is their commitment to giving back to the very project that gives them life. When I saw that they donated significant employee time to WordPress I thought, “I want to do that!” And now I am doing it!

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Vasken Hauri joins 10up as Director of Strategic Engineering

If you’re the kind of person who frequents WordCamps, jQuery conferences, or higher ed tech events, there’s a chance you may have already met me. If not, here’s a quick rundown of the diverse, wide-ranging, and somewhat eclectic set of skills I’ve honed over 12 years, and why I’m excited to bring them to 10up.

I’ve been working with WordPress since 2006, when I began using it for my personal blog. Since then, I’ve engineered WordPress to create everything from order fulfillment and tracking applications to APIs that withstand several hundred thousand hits per day. I’m proud to have been able to contribute some of the more generally useful pieces of this work back to the community, including several plugins hosted on the WordPress repository, changes to WordPress core, and assorted open-source Github projects.

A previous job in higher ed afforded me an opportunity to pursue and earn a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, and I was able to leverage those skills while working as a developer and Team Leader at GigaOM over the past two years. I’ve worked on every stage of major projects, from data modeling and wireframes to final style tweaks and coordination of release marketing. Having spent nine years working in higher education technology, I know from experience what it takes to engineer successful projects while remaining cognizant of the unique challenges faced by larger institutions when implementing technology solutions.

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John Bloch joins 10up

Hi! If you don’t know me from a WordCamp, the WordPress DC meetup, or the broader WordPress community, my name is John and I love LAMP. Building websites started as a hobby for me, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that this was my professional calling. I’ve always been fascinated by the process of architecting software; watching something I’ve helped craft come to life from mere concept still fills me with wonder.

I started working with WordPress in 2008 and it quickly became my platform of choice for building websites. After publishing plugins and engaging the WordPress community, both online and at the local DC meetup, I quickly became hooked. I started attending more WordCamps, and even had the privilege of speaking at a few. From multilingual sites to multisite networks, from store locators to TinyMCE extensions to combat shortcode madness, the applications and sites I’ve built upon WordPress testify to its flexibility and power.

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WordPress Community Summit

This past week, Jake, Helen, and I were privileged to attend the inaugural WordPress Community Summit in Tybee Island, GA.  The Summit was a unique opportunity for many of the top contributors in the WP community to get together, share ideas, and – for many of us – meet in person for the first time.  You can cover much more ground in a 45-minute roundtable discussion than you can in an off-and-on discussion on Twitter.

The core of the event was a one-day “conference of conversations” – we broke out into 35 separate unconference sessions, each of which lasted just under an hour and covered a variety of topics. Read More on WordPress Community Summit

WordCamp Providence: Birth Place of 10up

This weekend 10up is sponsoring the first ever WordCamp Providence as a top-level Anchor Sponsor!

This is a special camp for us, since 10up started in Rhode Island. Jake also started the WordPress Providence Meetup group, which Luke now leads, that became the foundation and organizing team for this WordCamp.

Jess Jurick, one of our Senior Web Strategists, will be speaking on Writing Tools for WordPress, reviewing offline and online tools to help you brainstorm topics for your blog, produce great content for your audience, and distribute that content to your online communities. Much to his disappointment, Jake can’t make the camp due to a personal conflict in his schedule, but he promises to be with us in spirit!

Eric Mann Joins 10up

You probably don’t know me yet – let’s fix that. I’m the new guy from the Pacific Northwest who spends as much time writing code as I do happily lost in the woods. Be careful, because I’m just as likely to talk your ear off about jQuery and AJAX as I am high alpine backpacking.

I’ve been building websites recreationally for over a decade; professionally for 6 years. I’ve been working with WordPress since a friend bribed me with a ticket to WordCamp Portland 5 years ago. Since then, it’s become my favorite platform for both serious development and rapid prototyping. WordPress has been at the core of everything from corporate websites to Facebook apps to slideshows; I have yet to find something I can’t do with it!

For the past couple of years, though, my focus has been on polishing my skills in different software paradigms and languages. But I’ve never abandoned WordPress – I stay active by speaking at WordCamps, working with the core development team, and answering questions on the WordPress Stack Exchange.

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