We’re fortunate to welcome so many fantastic speakers to the first WordCamp San Antonio! The lineup includes experts not only in WordPress, but digital marketing, Web content, and Web development, as well as experience in business and entrepreneurship.
Aaron was that kid taking apart the mechanical and electrical appliances at five years of age to see how they worked. He never grew out of that core interest – to know how things work. He took an early interest in computer programming, figuring out how to get past security to be able to play games on his dad’s computer. He’s still that feisty nerd, but at least now he gets paid to do it.
After being a full time Java consultant for five years, he moved to a full-time mobile architect position for a year and now is with Automattic (WordPress.com, Akismet, SimpleNote) as a Mobile Maker. Aaron’s interest in mobile development has been ever increasing since he got his first iOS app in Apple’s App Store in 2009, Migraine Diary. Other than software development, Aaron enjoys camping during the summer, taking his dogs for a walk around the neighborhood, and pretending to be a storm chaser while sitting at home.
Developing websites since 1996 and blogging since 2002, Kraft works at Automattic, focusing on the Jetpack plugin and WordPress.com VIP. On the side, he is an author at the 365brew.com beer blog and advises for Austin Catholic New Media ( http://austincnm.com ). Married with five young daughters, you can follow Kraft on Twitter (@Kraft) and on his personal site (http://www.brandonkraft.com/).
Devin Price is a WordPress developer based out of Austin, Texas. He runs a small theme shop called DevPress, writes about WordPress at WP Theming, and has built a number of popular plugins. He also previously worked with Demand Media to develop sites with partners like USA Today, Samsung, and the Houston Chronicle.
Drew Cox (@DrewCoxSA) is an original member of the Rackspace Managed Cloud support team with a pioneering spirit. Developing new roles, programs, content and approaches for Rackspace’s Cloud service platform. Before Rackspace, Drew spent time as a Government Contractor working with all types of organizations where he developed a passion for small/startup business. When he’s not working with customers to perfectly tailor their cloud solution, Drew is exploring Texas with his family, advocating for the city of San Antonio, looking for his next tasty bite and staying blissfully caffeinated.
Garrett has been blogging since May of 2009 about San Antonio food and culture on SA Flavor. Since 2008, he’s worked at Rackspace as an operations analyst, cloud project manager, content marketer and social media marketer. He believes the best cheese enchiladas in town can be found at Oscar’s Taco House.
James Dalman is an entrepreneur and U.S. Army veteran who recently launched Happy Joe, a non-profit business that provides veterans with training, education, mentoring, and career opportunities in the web media and tech industries.
James has been in the branding, design, and web media industry for over twenty years. He has done work for clients such as HTC, BMW, Michael Hyatt, Nike Golf, Eskimo Joes, NASCAR, and Arnold Palmer.
James graduated from the University of Houston with a bachelors degree in Finance. After a few years in sales James started freelancing part time. As his freelance business started to grow he partnered up with Click and Create in 2009. Since then James has helped develop, maintain and market over 300 websites.
Jarrett is the founder and owner of WPfixIt.com, based on the Apple support model of offering instant WordPress support for a flat fee. Since 2011, they have serviced over 10,000 support tickets. Jarrett has taken his passion for people and excitement in technology to create success around him.
Long before he started his own business, hard work and ambition were traits that were well ingrained. By age 25, Jarrett already had been promoted to executive, sales and management positions in the fortune 500 retail industry throughout various parts of the country.
Not afraid of risk and motivated by the potential to give back, Jarrett turned his 7 year hobby of HTML and PHP play into a business. The key to his success was networking. “Getting myself out there is what kick-started my business. I didn’t make a lot of money, but it helped me create credibility and my reputation.” A few years into his first WordPress development business , he made a commitment to help others to enhance their on-line presence through the power of WordPress.
When Jarrett goes off-line, you’ll find him setting up camp and roughing it under the stars at the local beach side campgrounds with his wife Tarn and 5 daughters.
Jason Merrell is a U.S. Army veteran with a passion for creating content and building communities. He spent eight years as a Public Affairs Specialist and served as a Non-Commissioned Officer for military intelligence organizations around the world. After finishing his enlistment, he wanted to continue using his skills to build a community, particularly around his passion for gaming and firearms. YouTube was the perfect outlet.
Over 700 videos and a few years later, “Sergeant Merrell” — as he is known on YouTube — has amassed a following of over 70,000 loyal fans that span across several social media platforms. Still a Soldier and Non-Commissioned Officer at heart, Jason approaches his content with a genuine, professional attitude that many of have come to enjoy.
Today, he is finishing his Bachelor of Science in Internet Marketing, continuing to build his brand, and cultivating his newest passion: teaching others how to turn their own passions into communities.
I’m Karl Staib, the founder of Domino Connection. I help entrepreneurs close their website’s connection gaps so they can close more sales. I’ve been told that I’m like a Sherlock Holmes of finding connection gaps. Creating a business that delivers great customer experience is the foundation for all customer connection. My main goal is to help you improve your WordPress site so you are attracting your ideal customers and increasing your sales. I focus on the health and wellness industry because I’ve had health issues in the past. I’m alive today because of modern medicine, lifestyle changes (diet, meditation, Yoga), and doing work I love (purpose). I want to help as many people live healthier and happier lives as I can. You can find out more about me at DominoConnection.com. I look forward to meeting you.
Kirk Bowman is a life-long entrepreneur, spending only one year as an employee since college. After five years as a saxophonist, he founded MightyData.com to help growing businesses scale through custom software. After fifteen years of hourly billing, he launched ArtOfValue.com to help professionals learn to discover value and start pricing. He enjoys snowboarding in Colorado and sharing pricing knowledge via Twitter @ArtOfValue.
Konstantin is a WordPress developer, and Core contributor based in Southern California. After contributing to Twenty Twelve, he was the backup lead and main developer for Twenty Thirteen and Twenty Fourteen, the most recent default themes. At Automattic he’s is part of a team that contributes back to WordPress full time. He enjoys craft beers and good food — sometimes so much that he blogs about it.
Kori Ashton started her first company at the age of 12 and has had an entrepreneur’s heart ever since. She built her first HTML website in 1998 and was instantly hooked on web design. With a degree in the arts, Kori brings to WebTegrity fun creativity and over fifteen years of experience as an online marketing specialist, graphic designer, and web developer.
Since 2005 Kori has taught HTML, CSS, Web Design, WordPress, SEO & other topics to hundreds of students at schools, colleges and community classes across Texas.
As a 6th generation Texan, she and her partner, along with their son & two dachshunds, are proud to call San Antonio their home. In her spare time Kori enjoys speaking at events, painting (you can see her artwork in our creative loft or here), biking the mission trails, hanging out with family, and playing the guitar. Check out her TEDx San Antonio Talk. She loves to tweek so Twitter her @KoriAshton
Kyler is the Marketing Coordinator for HostGator.com where he crushes the competition from 7-4. Constantly learning and growing, he seeks out new ways to develop his skill set and build his value as a marketer. Due to his success on the Twitter platform, Kyler was interviewed by the Twitter business team to be featured on their blog.
Before she began engineering happiness for users at WordPress.com, Marjorie R. Asturias ran a social media and content marketing company for several years. She launched her first blog relatively late (2007), but within a few weeks the blog scored a mention in the New York Times’ Style section. Since then she’s been interviewed on publications and media outlets as varied as Mashable.com, Fox Business News, Reuters, Ladies’ Home Journal, oDesk.com‘s first ebook, Intuit.com‘s blog, Business News Daily, Career Builder, and more.
Michele is a full time blogger, designer, and all around awesome person. She works for WP Security Lock as their WordPress Security and Plugin Specialist and Speaker/Trainer. Michele started her love for WordPress in 2010 and has never looked back. She is the Lead Organizer for the Southern Illinois WordPress Meetup. When not in front of a screen, Michele enjoys life with her family standing behind the camera.
Michelle Lowery is a native Texan, and the Co-Founder of Passion Fruit Creative Group, a San Antonio-based boutique Web copywriting agency that also provides WordPress website creation. She and her business partner have worked with a wide range of clients including Disney, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Macy’s, Home Shopping Network, and At Home (formerly Garden Ridge).
Michelle has more than 25 years’ experience as a professional writer and editor, and has worked in the digital marketing and SEO industry since 2008. Her work has been published on well known industry sites such as Search Engine Journal, the Buffer blog, and the Raven Tools blog. She’s also a webinar instructor and speaker, having presented at conferences and events such as PubCon Austin, State of Search, BlogItSA, and the San Antonio Online Marketing Meetup.
In her free time, Michelle writes fiction, and uses her skills to help local non-profits improve their digital marketing and bolster their online presences. She’s also a big animal lover and a pit bull advocate. Michelle and her husband share their home with a sweet pit bull mix, a vociferous Siamese cat, and an ornery cockatiel—all rescues.
Susan Price has made a career of surfing the waves of information technology revolution, starting with the Personal Computer, through Desktop Publishing, The Web, Social Media, Mobile … and it’s still quite a ride. A starry-eyed believer in the power of the web to make the world a better place, Susan helps clients choose and configure tools to create an integrated online presence, optimize user experiences and meet business goals. She teaches what she knows and believes strongly in the power of collaboration and coworking. She’s also founder and licensee of TEDxSanAntonio.
Terell is on the Operations team at WP Engine, a managed WordPress hosting provider. His day-to-day responsibilities consist of creating and maintaining processes to ensure a delightful customer experience throughout support interactions. He has been working with WordPress for over 6 years, and has had the pleasure of supporting WordPress for end-users for the last 4. He’s always excited to share the tips he’s learned over the years, and looks forward to speaking at the first WordCamp San Antonio!
Wayne Geyer advises decision-makers about connecting with the people they care about. His work helps organizations clarify their purpose, claim their value, and anticipate their audiences’ wants and needs. Wayne’s approach involves distilling complex information to its essence, and using simple communication skills to deliver messages clearly and effectively. In his “Write More Good” lectures and workshops, Wayne encourages all kinds of content creators to think before they write. On a related note, Wayne has also helped people write their own country music songs.
Wayne is a Web Designer / WordPress Developer who has dedicated his career to everything WordPress. He holds a B.F.A. in Computer Graphic Arts from The University of the Incarnate Word where he built his first WordPress theme and never looked back. He joined the WebTegrity team in August 2013 where he has been building custom WordPress themes from scratch and teaching private and group classes in WordPress Web Design and Development. He also runs WordPress Development Solutions which is an online tutorial resource where he writes articles about current web design trends, WordPress development, SEO techniques, and personal projects/experiences. Follow him on Twitter @WPDevSolutions
Yusuf is a professional digital marketing consultant, business coach and Instructor with a combined 15 years of experience in the field of marketing research. He has given lectures at colleges and universities both nationally and internationally over topics within the areas of his expertise which include: social media marketing, SEO, creation of WordPress based websites, video marketing, blogging and mobile marketing.