I grew up in a lower income household in Galveston, TX
Although I grew up in humble beginnings I always had a growth mindset. When I was a teenager I went to the mall and saw the movie WarGames.
WarGames captured my imagination...
If I could learn to code, I could change my world and the world. My mom put a TRS-80 Color Computer on layaway. When I was able to pay it off I checked out a programming book from the library along with a typing book (side note: I later learned the typing book was for people with one hand. To this day I can type incredibly fast with one hand).
Being a customer centric coder changed everything
In my early 20’s I wrote my first application and quickly began making millions for others who spotted my passion and talent. I moved to New York, Florida, and traveled the world. At 27, I became convinced that every business would run on the Internet. I moved to Atlanta which had the lowest cost of living and the highest concentration of dark fiber to the Internet. At this time the entire internet backbone to Florida was 45 Megabytes. I took my entire savings and rented half a floor in a heavy fiber skyrise in downtown Atlanta, stacked up PC’s to form a DataCenter, and Interland was born. I still remember one VC interrupting my pitch, “Kid, what are you saying?” I looked at the $10m picture behind him and said, “Every business is going to run their business on the Internet.” He responded, “Kid, do you believe your bullshit?” “I do” was my confident answer. In addition to the VC funding, Microsoft, Verizon, and Verisign became investors. I took the company public as CEO after the market crash (growing to over 500 employees and north of $200M in revenue). The company exists today as WEB.COM, and some of my early employees still work there 20 years later!
The journey continues
I have worked with and for many great companies, including Web.com (Interland), HostPro (WIPC), First Data, Cox Automotive, Humana, New Relic, and now Unqork. I have developed great insights into transformation from my experiences. Whether arranging to have Andy Jassy (CEO AWS) come to Cox to reinforce what Modern Software Development and Operations looks like to traveling the world as Executive Vice President of New Relic to consulting with Dominos, Disney, IBM, ANZ Bank, and others. From West Coast Unicorns to East Coast Unicorns, I love working with amazing people, purposeful cultures, and noble missions to change the world.
My greatest passion is inspiring co-workers, employees, and friends to reach beyond their comfort zones to achieve their dreams.
Some Interesting Details
Ken lives with his wife of 17 years, Heather, in Georgia, along with their three children.