Brandin’s Year-in-Review 2011

Happy New Year!

I hope this letter finds all of you well. I managed to find time over the course of several late nights to gather my address book, but ended up having to wait until after the holidays to sit down and write. Lots go through my head when I do this and rushing the letter won’t do any good for your enjoyment. I would hate to have the worst happen, losing touch with those I grew up with or made a difference to me.

2011 was a year in transition for me, after graduating from the College of Business at CSU Long Beach the prior spring. Throughout the year, there was a lot of traveling to and from the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, Dallas, and Portland, attending conferences and meeting with prospective business partners and tech start-ups regarding my next step.

After three and a half years, I departed my full-time involvement with PeacePartners Inc., in Long Beach. While the staff was much loved for its atmosphere and attitude, many knew that it was a matter of time before I was going to move on to bigger and better things. It was this time last year I had announced to many colleagues and friends that I was planning to move on, possibly even relocate, in search of my next move. I was grateful to have started here as an intern back in 2008 while I was working for the CSU Chancellor, and two years later, becoming full-time staff. I am thankful for the chance I had to be with them, especially considering how hard it is for students to find opportunities while in college. They have been greatly missed and I hope to remain good friends with everyone.

On a related note, after a five-year run, it was time for me to depart from my managing duties with athletics for the rowing team at CSULB (Beach Crew). It was a hard decision to make but everyone gave me their best wishes as I departed from the everyday duties. The response was overwhelming, going beyond the CSULB campus, throughout many western collegiate institutions. I have to say that in the past five years I was involved more off the water than actually in a boat. I met so many people from around the country. I am glad that there is a sense of respect for the institution up and down the state. I am honored to have been the voice for the team for all of those years. Today, Matthew Dalton has taken over my duties as the General Manager of Rowing. We talk on a weekly basis, sometimes even daily. I have retained my involvement with the Beach Crew Alumni Association as an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors, not to fully abandon my relationship from my roots. Sometimes I miss Long Beach and the chance to travel around the country.

Unrelated to rowing, a former professor of mine from the CSULB College of Business keeps inviting me back to teach a seminar to students during the spring semesters. The topic changes from introducing students new kinds of information systems beyond the classroom, informing students about current changes in the industry, and defining applications for mobile devices. The grant I helped obtain from Boeing is still going strong, which obtains testing equipment and funds a course for students seeking careers in mobile device applications.

As of September 2011, I have moved out into a place of my own residing on the north end of Lake Mission Viejo in South Orange County. Views of Modjeska and Santiago Peaks can be seen from the backyard since we’re in the foothills. I live with two former rowers from Orange Coast College, one I have known since middle school.

In October, out of the blue, I received a phone call from a company about five miles from my home, inviting me on board to their team of 12. The company, RockLive, was founded in 2010 by two brothers and has already released two major mobile applications for iPhone, iPod Touch, and the iPad. RockLive has very good connections with other companies, including Apple, Twitter, Facebook, EA, and several celebrities. I have to say I never saw myself working for a game company. There are hard 10-12 hour days to be worked, and I’m usually on-call when I’m not working, but I think the commitment will pay off soon. We’ve already been featured in major news sources, including a feature with me in it on Bloomberg West. Maybe a year from now we’ll be all over the news.

I can write pages about this past year, but I think this sums up a year in transition, getting back to the things that mattered, and fulfilling my desires in life. I wish all of you the best, good health, and prosperity this year.

Best Regards,