Articles

Employee Spotlight: Darwin Corn

Max Gralpois

11/21/2019

Darwin Corn, Systems Architect

By: Keshia Scarpello, Director of Customer Success

At AMS, our company culture is fueled by the passion and dedication of our employees. Our collective staff have a unique blend of experience of both client and agency side, with specializations ranging from software development, data analysis, eLearning, and agency performance management consulting. In today’s employee spotlight, we chose to highlight a critical member of our family – Darwin Corn – our lead managing our software development operations (DevOps), located in our home office in Seattle.

What has been your favorite project so far and why?

It hasn’t been a specific project, but rather a type of project. A few times now I’ve added an improvement to the dev team’s workflow, and instead of doing the whole thing I’ve partnered with another Dev on the proof-of-concept in order to teach and optimize their process. Watching them run with it, do way more than I’d ever thought of and share their learning with the rest of the team has been incredibly rewarding.

A specific project that stands out as a favorite in the opposite way has been improving our software’s observability, monitoring and alerting. Now I usually know when something’s not functioning as it should before the rest of the team (much less our clients), and when a Dev asks me to pull the logs on a service to help them with debugging, it’s been real fun to use our tracing tool to accelerate our resolution and empower their quick action.

What was your background prior to joining AMS?

I dropped out of my last semester of a Philosophy & Economics degree at the University of Montana, and worked as a sysadmin for a school bus software company and a developer at a home health care company before Milliman MedInsight moved me out here to Seattle to join their Dev team as a DevOps Engineer.

What are some of your hobbies or passions?

I’m a big believer in giving back my time as I have greatly benefited from mentorship in my life, so I try to always be mentoring at least one person outside of work. Right now the mentee I’m working actively with has prodded me to collaborate with him on a project to write some code to make it easier for folks to find and use alternatives to social media (i.e. Twitter) and big tech (i.e. Google Docs).

I started playing football when I moved to Seattle, and play in a local rec league as well as for their travel team (more on that below).

I get outside in all seasons, whether by skiing or hiking or playing any kind of golf.

I haven’t made much time for writing, recording, and performing music lately but you can still find me at most death metal shows in the Seattle area.

What do you do that makes you happy?

My partner Ashley and I have made it a priority to get out whenever we can, whether that’s a road trip down the 101 or a weekend at Deception Pass. Introducing her puppy Fallon to the outdoors over the last year has been wonderful.

The last two years I’ve played in the National Gay Flag Football League’s end of the year tournament, Gay Bowl, with the Seattle Boom. There’s nothing like traveling for a team event to build camaraderie, but what’s surprised me is how tight knit the national community is. The joy from folks competing in sports where they usually can’t be their authentic selves is absolutely contagious. Seattle’s a little late to the party (this year was Gay Bowl XIX but only the second that Seattle has sent a team to), but we’re still blazing trails here at home: we became the first flag football team to be sponsored by the Seahawks right before we went to New York for Gay Bowl this year.