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Independent IT Consultant,
March 2003 - present
March 1994 - March 2003
United Longchamp International, Chicago, IL
Director of IT Operations, April 2000- March 2003Systems Manager - Networks, October 1996 - April 2000
High level position, reporting directly to the CIO. Provided strategic direction and management for all BackOffice and networking operations. Ensured high level of business continuity and customer satisfaction through the implementation of solid operational procedures, standardization, centralization, automation, and other Best Practices. Developed and managed yearly $3 - $5M capital and $5M operating budgets. Responsible for over 100 servers distributed throughout the country. Managed a team of both internal direct reports and outsourced vendors.
- To reduce support requirements and costs, architected and implemented the foundation for future server consolidations and high-availability through the implementation of a Storage Area Network and SQL Server 2000 cluster (see Portfolio - Storage Area Network).
- Kept pace with customer and vendor demands for enhanced Internet based collaboration tools by developing and managing the new position of Web Specialist to oversee all external web hosting, customer facing applications, and implementation of new e-commerce and collaboration projects.
- Improved the security and availability of systems through the implementation of email and web browsing Acceptable Use mechanisms, reducing exposure to various threats, inappropriate content, viruses, etc.
- Facilitated improved file sharing abilities with customers and vendors through the design and implementation of a maintenance-free and secure public FTP server. Last minute courier fees were eliminated; overtime and "expedite" fees from vendors were reduced.
- Extended the data network to approx. 12 SOHO's through the implementation of low cost VPN's over DSL providing employees at these locations will full access to all corporate resources in real-time, as well as enhancing IT's ability to support these users remotely.
- Implemented the company's first Intranet: defined the requirements, wrote the RFP's, recommended vendors, and implemented the infrastructure, including the internal DNS, high availability web server farms, database servers.
- Realized in excess of $100K annually by developing and managing the new position of Communications analyst.
- Designed and implemented a new and scalable 750sq. ft. Data Center to further ensure system availability, protect technology investments, and increase security. (see Portfolio - Data Center).
- Developed, implemented and tested the company's Disaster Recovery procedure and plan (SunGuard).
- Initiated the migration to Windows 2000, Active Directory, and Exchange 2000 via a readiness assessment and migration plan.
- Responded to the organizational restructuring and downsizing through server consolidation, file centralization, WAN redesign, expansion of application access via Citrix.Project Leader, March 1994 - October 1996
Played lead IT role in managing the rapid expansion and growth of the the business organization from 800 users at 5 locations to over 1500 users in 17 locations nationally, 3 internationally. Proposed and implemented restructuring, process, technology and support improvements to accommodate the growing business demands.
- Architected, managed, and delivered the organization's largest technology initiative. This initiative coupled Y2K readiness requirements with a massive standardization effort. The project scope included the migration of Netware 3.x and 4.x, NT 3.51, and Banyan Vines servers to a single NT 4.0 domain, with Exchange 5.5 messaging, DHCP, and WINS, distributed on 45 servers throughout the enterprise, and the refresh of over 350 desktop computers. The successful project was completed 3 months ahead of schedule and over $300K under budget.
- Realized communications savings of over $250K annually through the migration of long distance, toll-free and data services from AT&T to Qwest. Served as the Project Manager for all VIAD subsidiaries involved in the migration. Success of this project led to promotion to Director.
- Balanced data security requirements with the growing dependence on Internet based communications through the design and implemention of a DMZ, security policy, and security audit. With this security infrastructure in place, was able to implement the company's first in-house e-commerce applications.
- To ensure critical communications and system availability, architected and implemented a backup for frame relay solution via ISDN, nearly eliminating loss of productivity due to circuit outages.
- Upgraded LAN equipment at all locations with the addition of standard switches and hubs. Implemented an ATM backbone LAN at the corporate office.
- Conducted IT evaluations, risk assessments and cost estimates for all potential acquisitions.
As the third member of the corporate IT staff for the entire enterprise, supported 800 users and 10 Banyan Vines servers nationwide. Developed the company's first IT standards and procedures.
- Converted an environment of mainly standalone computers to a 100% LAN-connected architecture allowing all users to access network resources and share information.
- Enabled enterprise wide data communications by architecting and implementing a WAN via frame relay (using Cisco routers). This initiative set the foundation for and enabled all future technology implementations and improvements (see Portfolio - WAN drawing).
- Provided direct Internet access to all users through the implementation of an Internet gateway and firewall.
- Implemented an enterprise wide standard email system (Vines Intelligent Messaging), including the incorporation of Internet email capabilities.
- Managed the integration of large acquisitions: replaced/implemented standard workstations, implemented WAN connectivity, integrated NetWare servers into email infrastructure.
- Implemented a network-based group scheduling application (OnTime).
- Implemented automated centralized asset tracking and software metering applications (NetCensus and CentaMeter).
- Led a process improvement team to identify areas of operational opportunity.
Vice President & General Manager, February 1993 - March 1994United Exposition Service Co, Chicago, ILGeneral Manager, August 1992 - February 1993
Responsible for the profitability and overall operations for the Chicago division of a European exhibit designer and producer.
- Reduced and controlled overhead expenses
- Controlled and optimized job costs, resulting in greater per job profitability
- Managed all transition efforts subsequent to the company's acquisition by Exhibitgroup/Giltspur
- Managed and supported the implementation of a new finance system to integrate with the parent company's. Modified all internal procedures to integrate with the new finance system.
- Headed up a process re-engineering and office automation project.Assistant General Manager, July 1990 - August 1992
See description for Vice President & General Manager, above.
- Implemented Great Plains Accounting system
- Continued to assess and implement process and procedure standardization throughout companyProduction Director, October 1984 - July 1990
See description for Vice President & General Manager, above.
- Brought a computer to every employees desktop
- Implemented a Local Area Network
- Trained and supported all users on new technologies
- Designed and implemented standard computer templates and forms to automate all departmental functions
- Developed customer and job tracking databaseAdministrative Assistant, December 1983 - October 1984
Was responsible for transitioning the entire production infrastructure and operation from an outsourced model to a fully internal operation.
- Negotiated contract with carpenter's union
- Implemented entire production operation: facility, carpenter shop, shipping & receiving, storage area
- Hired and managed entire production staff, both shop and on-site at shows
- Managed all client projects: created construction drawings, placed all job orders (materials and labor), tracked costs
- Supervised installation of projects at show site
- Handled all vendor selection and negotiation
- Began office automation initiative through the introduction of the company's first computers.
- Assisted with the opening and establishment of new operating divisions in other cities
Brought on as the fourth employee of a startup exhibit designer and producer to manage all office related activities.
- Provided all administrative support for management, sales and design staff
- Designed and implemented standard templates and forms
- Negotiated contracts for all office equipment
- Established standard procedures
Client Services Representative, August 1983 - December 1983Free Lance, Chicago, IL
The nation's largest General Service Contractor for trade shows and special events.
- Provided pre-show customer support
- Processed and entered all pre-show orders
- Provided show site support at Service Desk
- Processed all final customer billing
- Conducted on site collections
Professional Photographer, January 1980 - August 1983
Provided professional photography services for a wide range of clients and projects, including the following:
- Coverage of special events
- Catalogue work
- Corporate publications