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Location: Batesburg, South Carolina, United States

Industry: Manufacturer (Non Tech-Related)

Role: Networking / LAN Administration

In '84 I began doing data entry at a lawn mower plant while working toward my AS at the local tech college. I did some light maintenance programming (COBOL) after I finished the key punching. After graduating I was promoted to a programmer position. The rest of the IT staff was in another state, so I was the only paid 'geek' on site. When the plant closed in '90 I killed three years as lead computer operator for a contractor (SAIC) in an Air Force hospital. Don't ask. In '93 I got on with a manufacturer of railroad control systems as a programmer. I prefer manufacturing environments because I get a sense of satisfaction seeing material come in the door in one form and leave out the door in another, hopefully with some value added. As PCs and networks began taking off, I switch to supporting those systems. I spend about 60% of my time directly working with end users (hardware and software support), 20% on LAN and server management, and 20% on whatever management wants me to do that day. We're strictly a Windows shop. There's also a database administrator here, but again the rest of the staff elsewhere. I keep mentioning this because being the only PC and network person on site has resulted in a very broad body of knowledge, but there aren't many places where it's very deep. Right now I'm working with SCCM, replacing XP with W7 for 225 systems, and having my eighth boss in three years. I retired from the National Guard in '02 a couple of months short of 21 years. I don't play with tech toys outside the workplace, and I'm not active in social networking (unless you consider TR a social network). Hobbies include gardening, bird watching, and managing a NASCAR fantasy league. How 'bout that 17 20 car? Charlie Spencer, Nov '10

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