Archive for November, 2008


My last day at Microsoft…

I’m lucky.

For the last 4634 days of my life I’ve been able to say “I love working for Microsoft”. On this Tuesday, Dec 2nd, that will change as it will be my final day as a Microsoft employee.

I’ve had an extraordinarily fortunate career at Microsoft. But it almost didn’t happen. In 1994, I was sitting in my assembly language class at Iowa State University next to Brian McMaster. I asked if he had any co-op (longer internship) offers yet. “I just accepted my offer from Microsoft.” Panic ran through my body. In the 85 resumes I had sent, somehow I had overlooked the obvious: Microsoft! I raced home and mailed it that night. As my co-op period approached, I was going to accept an offer from a small software company in Iowa. Their offer letter was literally signed and sitting on my desk ready to mail the next morning. I came back to my dorm room after my 3 hour EE lab (ugh) to hear my phone ringing. It was a recruiter from Microsoft. They wanted to fly me out for interviews. Truly amazing! The rest is history. I spent more than nine years in the Hardware group which will always be my “home” at Microsoft, followed by some great time on the Surface team and finally a fun year in Office Labs.

I’m lucky. Lucky to have worked on great products with such awesome people. My deepest thanks go out to all of you – it’s been an honor working beside you. You rock. Special thanks to Rustyj for pushing me to the limit and helping me grow for so many years. Thanks to Tomgi and Lisab for always supporting and believing in me. I hope in my work as a manager I’ve been able to pay forward what you three have done for me (and countless others at Microsoft) over the years. I’ve loved my time at Microsoft and leave with very fond memories and many cherished friendships that will last a lifetime.

I’m leaving to pursue a passion that began over 5 years ago and has continued to grow. Everyone knows I’m pretty competitive (might be the understatement of the year) and that I love poker. In early 2007, I lived in Las Vegas for my 3 month sabbatical so I could play poker professionally. Things went well and I learned a ton. I loved the area, the 300+ days of sunshine a year (sorry, I had to :) ), the dry heat, the mountains, and most everything else Las Vegas had to offer. So I’m heading back and I’ll be playing poker as my full time job for at least the next year. Crazy? Probably. :) Only time will tell. You can follow all of the fun daily on my blog:

And of course, this mail wouldn’t be complete without a little “patented” phrase I like to use – so here’s to all of you for making my journey at Microsoft so incredible:


Thank you. All of you. For everything. I really couldn’t have asked for anything more in my time here. I am truly the lucky one.


PS: And if you’re coming to Vegas, let me know!