New Faces of Bamboo: Introducing Anita Colvard

Editor’s note: As readers of our 2009 Year in Review series will have likely gathered, Bamboo is currently undergoing rapid growth.  Some of our new hires have been with us for a couple of months now, but with new faces appearing in the office seemingly daily in recent weeks, we thought it would be a good idea to introduce the new folks to Bamboo Nation. You should expect to see many of these new faces beginning to appear regularly here in the Team Blog over the course of the year.

What is your role at Bamboo, and what are your goals for the year?

I am a support engineer, and I’m looking forward to becoming an advocate for Bamboo customers, and to help grow the synergy between Bamboo and her customers.

What’s your professional background?

I spent 15 years at AOL –  starting in member support, then moving to an internal/customer help desk role for publishing technology. Then I moved to online publishing and finally host systems software engineering. I particularly enjoyed the challenges and ever-changing world of automated newsfeeds, the rewards of front-end publishing, and the intricacies of search relevancy and indexing. The primary goal for all of our teams was to make the online experience the best it could be for our customers, whether they were internal teams or the public.

One of my primary goals has always been to make the customer experience the best it can be, whether I’m writing the code or addressing support issues, so I feel I have a lot to offer Bamboo and its customers in that arena.

What prompted you to join the Bamboo team?

Steve Gaitten, formerly a colleague at AOL, and currently Bamboo’s Director of Online Operations, kept telling me what a great place Bamboo was. I paid attention.

I loved working at AOL, but I was attracted to Bamboo by the innovative and nimble dynamic, and the friendly and social atmosphere. I also found that, in addition to Steve, some other old friends were now working here, and I was happy to be able to join them again in the workplace.

The more I learned about the company, and the more employees I met, the more I wanted to work at Bamboo.

What are some of your first impressions of working at Bamboo? 

“Oh my!  Look at all that food! An espresso machine!!!”

Even more importantly, what a friendly and hard-working group of people.

With over 60 products to learn, do you feel overwhelmed? What’s your strategy for getting up to speed?

Overwhelmed? Not exactly the term I’d use. I see this as a challenge and welcome the opportunity to strengthen and grow my knowledge and abilities.

I’ve already helped set up my first SharePoint server, and am installing and utilizing Bamboo Web Parts. I’ve been loaned good reading material on SharePoint and Bamboo products, and am writing a daily internal wiki with notes, observations, links, and impressions.

I find that writing as I learn helps me retain the information, and documenting that learning in a wiki makes the data retrievable for future needs.

Other than your deep and abiding love of Web Parts, what interests or hobbies do you enjoy outside of work?

I’m a devoted gardener and, I’m told, a pretty good naturalist. I’m particularly interested in native & medicinal plants, herbs, and heirloom vegetables and fruits. I also plant with an eye to attract birds and butterflies.

My cats and I enjoy bird watching. Steve Gaitten and I discuss the finer points of plant cultivation and propagation and have managed to swap plant starts now and again.

I’ve already talked about the benefits of raised beds and solarizing the soil to a co-worker who wants to start her own garden.

I attend nature and birding walks with a local conservation group, and enjoy digital SLR photography.

With an avocation for arts and crafts, I am setting up a workspace at home for wheel-thrown pottery, ceramic tiles, fabric arts (silk painting and dyeing, tie-dyed clothing), and just recently started weaving. I occasionally dabble in watercolor painting. When time permits, I print, mat, and frame my own photographs.

I’m also a certified SCUBA diver and was thrilled to switch from film to digital underwater photography.


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