I owe a great deal to Ed I, as well as Jose’ Carrerio, for hiring me into Citrix back in 1997. Having gone through Chapter11 at Hayes Microcomputer Products and given birth to my second son in 1995, life was hectic and when my son was a year old I decided to take a short career break to decide what I wanted to do. Having been at home for just 3 months my husband came home from work one day and said, “Can you do me a favour?”, as now a doting housewife and mother, I said “Of course, anything you want.” To which he replied, “Please get a job, you’re a nightmare being at home!” So I set about letting my contacts know I was looking again, this was August 1997 and I figured it would take me to January to get a good offer. I contacted an old friend of mine, a head-hunter, and he said he had a great role just come in and I’d be perfect for it. I interviewed with the International Marketing Director, Gerard Gatt at Heathrow the following week and then had a series of telephone interviews, one of which was with Jose’ – he told me my resume was spot on but he was interested in the chemistry. Citrix was about its people and, as a small team in Europe, personalities were key to success. After discussing technology, as well as wine and lobster, I waited just a day to hear I had the job!
I was asked to start straight away, but my eldest was just starting infant school so I asked to start 2nd week of September and the week after that was in Cannes for the Citrix EMEA Distributor Conference. This where I first met Jose’, along with Roger Roberts, Mike Passaro, Jim Tarlton and Mark Templeton. It was a great introduction to Citrix for me and the start of my career in virtualisation! My first meeting with Ed was the following month at the quarterly meeting in Fort Lauderdale, Citrix HQ in Florida. It was awesome to finally meet him (and Nancy) and they both welcomed me into the Citrix family.
My next meeting with Ed was when he came to the UK in 1998 right after the acquisition of Insignia. I drove him to the High Wycombe offices and then took him and Nancy to the Williams site in Oxford for a team building event to welcome the Insignia folks into the Citrix family. The day after I accompanied him for a number of press meetings, including John Lettice and Neil Fawcett. Both of whom were also impressed by Ed’s technology acumen and his friendliness. John’s tribute can be read here.
Another memory is when I was awarded MVP and went to President’s club in Cancun. Ed was always the life and soul of the party and this picture shows his party spirit – about to take a picture of me downing a tequila shot!
Ed was due to be my host at the first iForum to be held outside of the US in June 2000 at the old Wembley
Stadium Arena (updated after reminder from Andrew Wood that it was the old Arena not Stadium!). I had attended a friend’s wedding in Fort Lauderdale in late May and Ed told me then it was unlikely he would be able to attend and to make a ‘contingency’ plan. A few days later he was no longer chairman 🙁 Plans were in full swing so we went ahead with a different keynote presenter, but it wasn’t the same. I did, however, receive a lovely mail congratulating me on the success of the event (albeit it was a big team effort!) from MarkT – I had lost my mother right beforehand and he was impressed by my ability to carry on, although I crumbled on the second day and had to leave early. Wow, memories can be so hard……
In 2003 we went on a family holiday to Florida, you know, Disney, the Keys but took some time out to visit Ed at his new venture, DayJet – ableit it was still in stealth at that time and was operating under the name of Jetsons! Again, his passion and enthusiasm was infectious, it was lovely to see him ‘back in the saddle’ again.
I last saw Ed at Jose’ Carrerio’s memorial last September in Marshfield, just outside Boston. It was lovely to see him and Nancy and I had no idea, at the time, he was already so ill. We chatted about the old Citrix days, the impact that Jose’ had on all our lives and Ed said something to me that made me smile but also demonstrated how humble he could be. With his latest venture, VirtualWorks, he was back in the virtualisation industry and he said he was very proud of how my career had progressed and given my profile within the virtualisation community he told people HE knew ME 🙂 I regret that I didn’t get a picture of myself with Ed that day, but given the circumstances, it wasn’t appropriate.
My ever-lasting memory of Ed will be his smile, his laughter and his bear hugs. One of the things that Citrix gave me, over money and career, was long-standing friendships. Some of my closest friends today are ones that started as colleagues at Citrix. So thank you and rest in Peace Ed I.