I'm a deep generalist focused on software engineering, journalism and the open web. I have primarily worked as an Internet technologist and full-stack developer, and am now applying those skills in the world of journalism and local news as a publisher. I have a range of experience as a founder, manager, organizational leader and community builder.
I like to think about how systems (e.g. Internet applications, businesses and organizations, media and politics, pillow forts) work, and then try to make them better (more efficient and effective, less harmful to the planet, more just and equitable, more fun).
I also am or have been a:
- Technology business founder
- Open source software developer
- Candidate for elected office
- UNIX systems administrator
- Regional sustainability conference organizer
- Editorial columnist and blogger
- Conference and workshop speaker
- Distributed team leader
- Political consultant
- Not-for-profit board president
- Weekly news & opinion podcast host
- Performer of magic and juggling
- College computer science course instructor
- Husband and father
- World traveler
My current work is as owner of a media company and as publisher, editor and writer at a weekly print newspaper in Indiana, where I'm exploring the intersections of technology, journalism and civic engagement. In 2022 I completed a master's degree in journalism. Previously, I worked as a Senior Software Engineer and Team Lead at Automattic, the makers of WordPress.com and more.
I blog here about the thinking and experiences described above; you can read my signature blog posts and a statement of ethics and comment guidelines for this website. I also write about newspaper publishing at stumble.press and about technology and software at tech.chrishardie.com.
My personal pronouns are he/him.
In the interest of full disclosure and to promote the organizations and projects with which I'm involved, here's a list of my personal and professional affiliations.
- I'm the owner and Publisher of the Western Wayne News (2022-present)
- I'm the President of Civic Spark Media LLC (2022-present)
- I'm the creator and editor of the local news aggregation website WayneCounty.info (2011-present).
- I'm a member of the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors (2023-present).
- I'm the owner of Kind and Curious Ventures LLC (2020-present)
- I'm a limited partner investor in TinySeed's Fund 2 (2021-present)
- I graduated with a Master of Arts in Journalism from Ball State University (2022)
- I was the solo founder and builder of the WordPress-related SaaS application WP Lookout (2020-2022)
- I was a volunteer consultant on strategy and communications for various local political campaigns to elect progressive candidates. (2015-2022)
- I was the Chair of the Wayne County Indiana Democratic Party (2021-2022)
- I was the Consulting Digital Editor for Hometown Media Group LLC and the Western Wayne News (2020)
- I was employed at Automattic, Inc. (2014-2019) and remain an investor in privately held company stock.
- I was Principal and owner of Summersault, LLC, an Internet technology services firm I co-founded (1997-2014)
- I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science from Earlham College (1999), am a past member and officer of the College's Alumni Council (2009-2015), and have previously taught classes there (Robotics in May 2003 and Software Engineering in Spring 2006)
- I'm a former board member and board chair at the Wayne County Foundation (2010-2016)
- I was a candidate for an At Large seat on the Richmond Indiana Common Council in 2011
- I'm a former community volunteer member of the Palladium-Item's editorial advisory board (2012-2013)
- I'm a former member of the Indiana University East School of Humanities and Social Sciences Board of Advisors (2010-2012)
- I'm a former board member and board president of WayNET.org (2000-2004)
- I'm a former board member and board chair of Main Street Richmond-Wayne County (2002-2004)
- I'm a former board president at the Clear Creek Food Cooperative (now closed)
- I'm a former board member and volunteer mediator for the Conflict Resolution Center (2007-2009, now closed)
- I was a co-owner of Summersault Properties, LLC (2005-2017)
- I was the owner of Silverback Adventures, LLC (2006-2016)