My name is Dale Ferrario. I have worked for some great companies, including Amdahl, Sun Microsystems, FreshBrain, Juniper Networks, and VMware.
Right, you have never heard of Amdahl. They are no longer in business but use to build IBM-compatible mainframe computers. This was my first job out of college. I worked in the design automation group – the team that built the software that the mainframe designers used.
I then moved to Sun Microsystems where I worked for 20 years! Oh yea, they no longer exist either. They were purchased by Oracle a number of years back. During my 20 years, I held a number of jobs starting in the SPARC group, moving into the operating systems team, working on storage, networking and systems management, ran IT for all of software at Sun, ran a part of the Java organization, and helped purchase a company called SeeBeyond where I ran their product team.
I then decided to make a major change and started an educational non-profit called Freshbrain. We built a social learning platform to teach teens about technology through hands-on experiences. This was the most fun that I have ever had, reaching more than 1 million teens in our best year. Yes, this company also no longer exists. I am seeing a trend here. As the founder, I had to shut this down during the worst economy that I have ever seen in my life.
I returned to the corporate world joining Juniper Networks where I was a part of the core Junos operating systems team. I was responsible for transforming the way the company built and delivered Junos to our customers across all of our switching and routing products. This company is still in business:)
And finally, I joined VMware. After working at a couple of hardware companies (Sun and Juniper), it was clear that software was quickly commoditizing hardware – primarily through virtualization. So I decided to join the world leader in virtualization:) I held a number of roles at VMware in what is called the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) organization, driving the integration of our products into a stack that is easy for our customers to install, configure and operate. I also held roles in our Global Services organization defining new ways to deliver self-service, reactive and proactive support for our customers.
As for education, I went to the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) for my undergraduate in Computer Science. While there I enjoyed intramurals and was a part of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. I was a founding member as the fraternity was reinstated at UCSB, where I held a number of leadership positions.
I went to Santa Clara University for my MBA. I started this while at Amdahl and finished while at Sun – going to school after work. This was an amazing way to learn while doing. I was able to apply something from each class to my work and bring work back into my assignments and projects at school.
So there you go. I have been working for a long time, at great companies, doing just about every job that you can imagine in organizations delivering both hardware and software products. I have managed projects and teams across the world. I have run programs that were core to changing the way these companies worked. I have managed small and large teams. I have been a part of and have run large slow-moving highly agile teams. I have learned lots of ways to get things done. I have made lots of mistakes along the way and had some amazing successes.