Leaving Yahoo!

I’ve thought a lot about how to begin this post, but it’s best to get right to the point (especially in light of the speed of Techcrunch). I’m leaving Yahoo! to pursue another very exciting opportunity: joining the Etsy team as CTO. I’ll save my thoughts on Etsy for later, but for now I will say that Etsy and the community it serves are all-around inspiring and I can’t wait to jump in.

(See the blog post from Etsy).

I really couldn’t be more thankful for my experience at Yahoo and to the people who made it such an amazing journey, or more excited about the next chapter in my career and life. I had an amazing run. Long-time readers of this blog might remember that I literally proclaimed one of my three years at Yahoo! as the best year of my life. In the past, I’ve told people that I’ve had all of the best jobs at Yahoo, and I have: running the Hack program, the Yahoo! Developer Network (where I had the privilege of working with the Pipes and MyBlogLog teams, too), and now Brickhouse, where we shipped both Yahoo! Live and the Fire Eagle beta. It has been an unbelievable experience. Yahoo! is a great company full of incredible people.

In each of those roles, I’ve had a unique opportunity to get to know many people inside and outside of Yahoo! Literally hundreds of people were helpful and supportive of me at Yahoo! so I am reluctant to list names. I spent a few hours on a list of people to thank and realized when I hit 150 that it was too unwieldy — the list included everyone from well-known execs to the groundskeepers who made sure the lawn sprinklers didn’t come on during Open Hack Day. Feeling gratitude to so many people is definitely a high-class problem. It amazes me that so many of the folks at Yahoo! shared their personal talents and gifts with me so profoundly. You know who you are and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

In leaving, I’m confident that Brickhouse is in good shape. The product teams (Fire Eagle and Yahoo! Live) are focused and cranking. Brickhouse continues to attract new talent and strong support from Yahoo! management. I’m pleased to be handing the reins over to Mike Folgner, who was CEO of Jumpcut, where he took Jumpcut from idea to product to acquisition by Yahoo! The team won’t miss a beat without me. Tom Coates , Eric Fixler, and the other folks on the team are rock stars.

If you’re familiar with Etsy, you know they are in New York. Brooklyn, to be exact. That means I will be moving to New York. On a personal level, the quiet tug back east has been persistent recently. My mother-in-law passed away in mid-May, my first loss of someone I cared about so deeply. At the same time my mother was battling a terrible illness and spent a few months in the hospital back home in NC, only to be cured by a last-ditch treatment. When miracles happen, it changes your perspective. And how can you go wrong living in New York? To quote John Lennon in the recorded version of his not-quoted-very-often song “New York City,” — “what a bad-ass city!” That pretty much sums it up.

I’ll be in the Bay Area for a few more weeks before heading out to New York. To my Bay Area friends and colleagues, you have given me so much in my time here, I can’t thank you enough. The time I spent out in California this past ten years has literally been life-changing. To my New York friends, I look forward to reconnecting. To quote a famous New Yorker, “today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of this earth.”