Liftoff Employee Spotlight: Dave Baldwin
Each month we shine the spotlight on the members of our team that are making the biggest difference for our subscribers. This month, we focus on Dave Baldwin, one of our senior implementation developers. Dave brings a wealth of variable print knowledge and experience to the table, ultimately ensuring our subscribers have the best web-to-print experience possible. Read on to learn more about Dave and his adventures on the Liftoff platform!
Liftoff: Dave, you've been in print for a while. What's your origin story? How did it all begin?
Dave: I started out my career as a prepress composition designer with Poser Business Forms (now PrintXcel) in 1997. After some time, I became the go-to "I.T. guy" and became instrumental in the support and development of systems and processes that supported ecommerce. Not too long after I was hired, we were purchased by MailWell (now Cenveo) and became part of the custom resale group.
A few years later, I was asked by Bernie Pasquantino, former director of ecommerce for Discount Labels, to train for a new ecommerce platform that had custom proofing capabilities called Four51. The variable print technology used to power their proofing engine is what we now know and love as Pageflex. That year, I built my first variable print site with over 500 products. Years later, in 2004, I began working with Kathy Kessinger who headed up Cenveo's ecommerce implementations. We quickly watched our ecommerce efforts increase in size by more than 15 times over the course of 10 years. I began working at Liftoff in 2018, leaving Cenveo after twenty-two years. As of now, I currently have 25 years of experience in the industry.
Liftoff: What does your eight-to-five look like?
Dave: I am a Pageflex developer, primarily. I take designs that our clients send us and create variable print templates based on the customized properties they’ve requested on a website. This information we process can be entered manually, chosen from a set of database records, or even uploaded directly. I am also the official Pageflex trainer for Liftoff. I train and support clients that perform their own Pageflex development.
One thing that I really enjoy about my job is the variety of challenges that come with each new template. I like figuring out new and more efficient ways to solve issues. It may take me a little while to "noodle" an answer, but I always come up with something!
As a whole, the company, what they stand for, and how their employees are treated are amazing. I think the world of each and every person who works for Liftoff. I feel like I am home! The only thing that I don't like about it here is that I hadn't joined the team sooner.
Liftoff: What's your favorite feature off the platform?
Dave: Selfishly, it would have to be the system error logs! I have been scripting more than ever in Pageflex, and the error logs are a great boon to help figure out what went wrong.
Liftoff: Do you have a childhood hero? What can you tell me about them that shaped who you are today?
Dave: This may sound cheesy, but thinking back, I have to say that my hero is my dad. I have one of those types of dads that did everything. Not because he could, but because he needed to. He is a retired mechanic now, but he also took on the roles of plumber, electrician, mason, carpenter, and appliance repairman. We grew up fairly poor, so if something broke, he fixed it. That is his way and it is how I have tried to live my life by his example. I am thankful every day to have even a few of his skills passed down to me.
Liftoff: What makes Dave happy?
Dave: Coffee. Coffee makes me happy! Beer helps, too! I love video games, specifically RPGs (role-playing games). There's a lot of love for my Mini Cooper and I have slowly been adding custom bits here and there, but am trying not to break the bank while doing it. I also like to woodwork, although I don't spend as much time as I'd want to in the garage. It's not climate-controlled, and boy, does it get hot in there!
Liftoff: Here's my last question: what should the Liftoff community know about you?
Dave: I am just a regular guy that likes cheesy dad jokes and video games. I like lending a hand to folks that may need it, especially if it is Pageflex-related!