Employee Spotlight: Bill Marion
Bill joined Escape in January 2001. Bill is the Software Architect for Escape, including the desktop and portal products. Prior to coming to Escape, he worked at System Integrators Inc. in Sacramento for 13 years in Research and Development as a Systems Architect and in the later years as the Director of R&D. What is your favorite part of working for Escape? — By far, what I enjoy most about working at Escape, is working for an employer that genuinely cares about each and every one of their employees. The environment is that of a cohesive family striving to work together for the good of everyone.
Can you give us a quick play-by-play of your average work day? — My days are generally filled with a fair amount of time devoted to research. This might be related to new product design or improvements to existing products or to identify the root cause for software problems. I also spend time developing and refining functional software prototypes for new products or enhancements to existing products. And, when needed, answer questions and provide technical assistance to the development group when questions or issues arise.
What have been some of the highlights of your career? — I have a broad technical background with degrees in Math, Physical Science, and Computer Science, and extended studies in Electrical Engineering and Technical Drawing and Architecture. Early on, I taught Computer Programming and Computer Hardware classes at a local Community College. I also started a business designing and developing multimedia slide presentation systems. Later, I became the Systems Architect at System Integrators, where I met Chad Guest. Eventually, I joined Chad in R&D at Escape, where I currently work on the design and development of future products.
What are your favorite activities or things to do when not working? — Among my favorite things to do outside of work, is spending time enjoying the great outdoors and experiencing all that Mother Nature has to offer. I particularly enjoy spending time exploring the sites that can be found in local, state and National parks, seeing and understanding the various geologic processes at work. Not unrelated, I also enjoy both conventional photography and 3-D photography when outdoors.
I also spend time designing and developing various Home Automation devices and systems, of which my house is now totally overrun. I also have a passion, dating back to my earliest boyhood years, for all things related to trains, working with model trains and developing automation for the train layouts.
Where are you from originally? — I was born and raised near Carmichael, California. So I am a native Californian. However, my mother moved from Florida where she grew up on a farm to California not long before I was born, and I quickly developed a strong tie to all things southern, including my early vocabulary and taste for foods.
If you weren't a Software Architect, what would you be? — If I could be doing something else with my life right now, I would like to be either a Park Naturalist or a Park Docent at one of the western US National Parks. I love being in the outdoors and working with other people and helping others learn and enjoy nature too. Perhaps, one day, after retirement, I may look into pursuing this dream as a park volunteer.
What is your favorite food? — My favorite foods are just about anything southern. I would never turn down a plate of Grits with eggs and bacon. I love to cook and have created many custom recipes for the things I love to eat. But if I had to pick one favorite food above all others, it would be a Creole style Jambalaya.
What is your ringtone? — I don't have a favorite Ringtone. In fact I don't really use a ringtone (unless you consider vibrate to be a ringtone) as I use a Bluetooth enabled Smart Watch to provide all notifications and alerts from my cellphone without the need for a ringtone.
If you could meet one person, who and why? — I always want to meet people with knowledge of things from which I can learn from. Picking one person is difficult, but perhaps it would be astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. He has an unbelievable ability to communicate complex ideas in a way that can be understood and having an opportunity to hear his thoughts and ideas of the world around us would be priceless.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be? — If I could have some kind of super power, I think I would like to possess the power of tele-transportation so I could travel to all of the places I want to visit instantly without losing the time and energy that is spent traveling to get there.