10 People that Influenced my Career in 2010

This is the most procrastinated post I’ve had, but wanted to put it out there anyway.


As a great year comes to a close, it’s fun to reflect on people that impacted you in some way, here’s my top 10 list in no particular order.

Mark Suster

I found out about Mark when he began hosting TWIV.  This is now my favorite podcast, I watch it either on the plane or in my basement on the Apple TV.  Mark’s knowledge, attitude and passion for his industry is inspiring and motivating.  Thanks Mark.

Brad Feld

Ever since I met Brad he’s been a huge source of motivation to me.  The type of motivation Brad brings is unique, it’s practical motivation.  I have learned more tactics (Morning Think, Life Dinner, Do More Faster) from him than anyone else thus far in my career.  Thanks Brad.

Ninan Chako

Since our company was acquired a year ago I’ve been on a ridiculously fun ride.  Ninan, the CEO of PR Newswire, asks questions constantly, loves what he does and generates energy whenever he comes to Denver.  I am having a great time working for and learning from you Ninan, thanks.

Mark Solon

I met Mark somehow this year via Twitter and can’t think of anyone I barely know that I have more in common with: tech, skiing, biking, investing, family.  Mark’s story is awesome and his career situation is one I’m striving towards.  Thanks Mark.

Rob Johnson

The project my team began this year involves big data and semantic goodness.  I had talked with Rob face to face once before during the 2009 Triple Bypass bike ride around 11k ft at the base of Loveland Pass.  This year I have talked with Rob and the GNIP team weekly getting a full blown education in API terms of service, rate limits and the activity format which has been crucial to our success.  Thanks Rob (and Jud and Chris).

Dan Primack

I signed up for Dan Primack’s daily email this year (thanks Mark Solon) and have felt more in touch with the PE and Venture Capital industry than ever before.  It is the most informative email I get every day, easily trumping any NY Times or WSJ email updates, etc.  Thanks Dan.

Vivek Wadhwa

I have never met Vivek and have only seen him speak once, at the Defrag Conference this November in Denver.  I talk to people almost daily and cite points from Vivek’s talk about creating innovation culture.  Thanks Vivek.

Howard Lindzon

2010 began by dialing into an 8am skype call with Howard on New Years Day, Jan 1st.  I was surprised when he suggested that time but then realized this is how people that are motivated, successful and driven role.  Time, place, space….these things do not matter to people like Howard.  Thanks for starting my year off right Howard.

Jason Keller

Jason was a co-founder of The Fuel Team, acquired by PR Newswire in 2009, and ran global products for PR Newswire for a year.  We have been working side by side for 8 years but this year was especially fun.  Jason’s work ethic, personal organization, family focus and drive is a huge motivator for me.  Thanks Jason.

David Allen

I’m not sure how I learned about David Allen’s Getting Things Done but it has absolutely had one of the most positive impacts on my work and personal life than anything else in the past few years.  I have his podcasts, specifically the Guided GTD Mind Sweep episode, at the ready.  I use Things for the Mac throughout the day and have used many of David’s ideas to optimize my personal and professional life.  Thanks David.

Lists are a funny thing.  If I had titled this “the top 20…” then I would have written about amazing people like Micha Hanson, Elliot Turner, Keith Hunniford, Chad Fowler, Fernand Galiana, Paul Kedrosky, and Rod Nicolson.  As I finally post this in 2012, it’s fun to see who I’m still working with, who is still a big influence and who has faded from my life.


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