Monday, November 23, 2009

New Job. New Home.

I have big news! I have just accepted the position of Director of Community for (focusing on WikiAnswers). I'll be leading a distributed team of 5 folks who have about 15 assistants and nearly 700 volunteers across the globe who are supporting nearly 4 million registered users and over 50 million visitors a month. Whew!

As part of the job, I must move to New York. It was not an easy decision to make. I will be moving away from my mother (two hrs away in Merced), good friends, a nice cheap rental in Hayward, and many, many professional friends, colleagues and peers. I will miss seeing them as often as I do now, but I look forward to keeping connected through all our virtual connections.

On the other hand, I am moving six hours and $300 closer to Europe. Also, I will be closer to a number of places that are of interest to me such as the Philadelphia (Mütter Museum and The College of Physicians of Philadelphia) and the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, MD. I look forward to trips north and south exploring the other coast.

At the center of this, though, is the work to be done. is pretty cool and energetic. I get to work with an existing community and staff and help everyone grow and become more empowered at helping answer other people's questions. I look forward even more to how I can help make that happen better, faster, with more people helping each other.

If you can help me with the following please contact me:
  • Friends/family who live in NYC, especially Brooklyn, who can help me understand the neighborhoods.

  • Friends/family who are in real estate, property mgmt, or can recommend a broker in NYC who can help me find a place and understand the ins and outs of renting.

  • Recommendations for national movers to help me get the few very precious things I will take with me to NYC safely.

I know this is a surprise to some folks (what else is new) so I hope to answer a few questions. If I miss one you have, add it as a comment or shoot it to me and I will answer!

When do you start?
I start sometime mid-January 2010. I want to finish up some client work and there is a very special winter camping event I want to attend.

When do you move?
No later than mid-February 2010. I hope to have a place lined up by Feb 1 so I can concentrate on my move. I'm not sure if I will be able to stay for my birthday (Feb 19), though.

Do you have time to take on any online community work?
I regret that as of now, I am unavailable to accept any client work. If you wanted to talk about possible work, I do know many online community people who are looking for clients and I would be happy to match you up with one of these fine people.

Why do you want to leave California?
It's not that I want to leave California. It's that working on a project like and WikiAnswers is a huge opportunity to be a part of something that will have an impact on people. I recognize that to do the job well, I need to be closer to the people in New York and the office in Israel.

Where are you going to live?
I'm not sure. Brooklyn looks and feels a lot like Oakland and so I am looking there first. I also am not ready for the shock of Manhattan apartment prices. If you know anyone who lives in Brooklyn and can offer me advice on neighborhoods, please let me know!

Can stay at your place when I come to New York?
Sure! As long as you don't mind that I will not be in Manhattan. I will look for a place that will give me enough room for office/guests so please come make use of the space.

Can I have your stuff?
I definitely have to shed stuff from my life. If there is something particular you have been coveting, ask!

Are you giving up the VW Thing?
Yes (sniff!). It's time I come to terms with the fact that I don't have the drive to get the poor darling restored like it deserves. She's been good to me and I'll be looking for a good home ASAP.

This is big, really big. So did I miss a question? What do you want to know that I haven't already said?

photo of brooklyn bridge by See-ming Lee