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David Felfoldi
Worked at Sherpa! Web Studios
Attended University of Georgia
Lives in Atlanta
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David Felfoldi

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David Felfoldi

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After nearly 7 years as CFO, I will be retiring from Google to spend more time with my family.  Yeah, I know you've heard that line before.  We give a lot to our jobs.  I certainly did.  And while I am not looking for sympathy, I want to share my thought process because so many people struggle to strike the right balance between work and personal life.

This story starts last fall. A very early morning last September, after a whole night of climbing, looking at the sunrise on top of Africa - Mt Kilimanjaro. Tamar (my wife) and I were not only enjoying the summit, but on such a clear day, we could see in the distance, the vast plain of the Serengeti at our feet, and with it the calling of all the potential adventures Africa has to offer. (see exhibit #1 - Tamar and I on Kili).

And Tamar out of the blue said "Hey, why don't we just keep on going". Let's explore Africa, and then turn east to make our way to India, it's just next door, and we're here already. Then, we keep going; the Himalayas, Everest, go to Bali, the Great Barrier Reef... Antarctica, let's go see Antarctica!?" Little did she know, she was tempting fate.

I remember telling Tamar a typical prudent CFO type response- I would love to keep going, but we have to go back. It's not time yet, There is still so much to do at Google, with my career, so many people counting on me/us - Boards, Non Profits, etc

But then she asked the killer question: So when is it going to be time? Our time? My time? The questions just hung there in the cold morning African air. 

A few weeks later, I was happy back at work, but could not shake away THE question: When is it time for us to just keep going? And so began a reflection on my/our life. Through numerous hours of cycling last fall (my introvert happy place) I concluded on a few simple and self-evident truths:

First, The kids are gone.  Two are in college, one graduated and in a start-up in Africa. Beautiful young adults we are very proud of. Tamar honestly deserves most of the credit here. She has done a marvelous job. Simply marvelous. But the reality is that for Tamar and I, there will be no more Cheerios encrusted minivan, night watch because of ear infections, ice hockey rinks at 6:00am. Nobody is waiting for us/needing us. 

Second, I am completing this summer 25-30 years of nearly non-stop work (depending on how you wish to cut the data). And being member of FWIO, the noble Fraternity of Worldwide Insecure Over-achievers, it has been a whirlwind of truly amazing experiences. But as I count it now, it has also been a frenetic pace for about 1500 weeks now. Always on - even when I was not supposed to be. Especially when I was not supposed to be. And am guilty as charged - I love my job (still do), my colleagues, my friends, the opportunities to lead and change the world.

Third, this summer, Tamar and I will be celebrating our 25th anniversary. When our kids are asked by their friends about the success of the longevity of our marriage, they simply joke that Tamar and I have spent so little time together that "it's really too early to tell" if our marriage will in fact succeed. 
If they could only know how many great memories we already have together. How many will you say? How long do you have? But one thing is for sure, I want more. And she deserves more. Lots more.

Allow me to spare you the rest of the truths. But the short answer is simply that I could not find a good argument to tell Tamar we should wait any longer for us to grab our backpacks and hit the road - celebrate our last 25 years together by turning the page and enjoy a perfectly fine mid life crisis full of bliss and beauty, and leave the door open to serendipity for our next leadership opportunities, once our long list of travels and adventures is exhausted.

Working at Google is a privilege, nothing less. I have worked with the best of the best, and know that I am leaving Google in great hands. I have made so many friends at Google it's not funny. Larry, Sergey, Eric, thank you for friendship. I am forever grateful for letting me be me, for your trust, your warmth, your support, and for so much laughter through good and not so good times.

To be clear, I am still here. I wish to transition over the coming months but only after we have found a new Googley CFO and help him/her through an orderly transition, which will take some time. 

In the end, life is wonderful, but nonetheless a series of trade offs, especially between business/professional endeavours and family/community. And thankfully, I feel I’m at a point in my life where I no longer have to have to make such tough choices anymore. And for that I am truly grateful. Carpe Diem.


Patrick
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David Felfoldi

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This week kicked off the Atlanta Bike Challenge — a 20 day competition to get people to try commuting to by bike. Whether to work, or an errand, or to the gym, the challenge wants to get as many people, especially non-cyclist, to put a little fun between…
This week kicked off the Atlanta Bike Challenge -- a 20 day competition to get people to try commuting to by bike. Whether to work, or an errand, or to the gym, the challenge wants to get as many p...
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When your mother and I were training for a marathon — yes, your parents once completed a marathon — 8 weeks seemed like forever. That’s two full months, plenty of time to train and prepare. But as your mother and I move into our final 8 weeks, there…
When your mother and I were training for a marathon -- yes, your parents once completed a marathon -- 8 weeks seemed like forever. That's two full months, plenty of time to train and prepare. But a...
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Enough with the technology hate already. Social media is a tool; it is the use of that tool that is…

Enough with the technology hate already. Social media is a tool; it is the use of that tool that is the problem, not its entire existence. Need proof? Consider this: social media… rekindles and strengthens relationships with friends, family where…
Enough with the technology hate already. Social media is a tool; it is the use of that tool that is the problem, not its entire existence. Need proof? Consider this: social media... rekindles and s...
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Use Wikipedia? Please keep it ad-free for another year with a $1 donation.
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When your mother and I were training for a marathon -- yes, your parents once completed a marathon -- 8 weeks seemed like forever. That's two full months, plenty of time to train and prepare. But a...
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I attended a special preview of the Center for Civil and Human Rights yesterday. The Center is far more than a museum, which would merely capture and catalogue artifacts. Rather, the Center is an interactive, immersive experience of the region’s fight for…
I attended a special preview of the Center for Civil and Human Rights yesterday. The Center is far more than a museum, which would merely capture and catalogue artifacts. Rather, the Center is an i...
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Today’s Santorini adventure started early as we sailed via schooner around the islets of Santorini. Jessica: When will the boat get to the island? David: Schooner or later. The islands of Santorini are a result of a final volcanic eruption from 3,600…
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In his circles
103 people
Have him in circles
90 people
April Nolan's profile photo
Barbara Knight's profile photo
jigger roses's profile photo
Megan Pulsts's profile photo
Mary Ann's profile photo
Innovolt's profile photo
Veronica Kessenich's profile photo
Chris McCord's profile photo
Ignacio del Villar Fernandez's profile photo
Education
  • University of Georgia
    2001
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Work
Employment
  • Sherpa! Web Studios
    CEO
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Atlanta
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David Felfoldi's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Welcome to the Internet of Thingies: 61.5% of Web Traffic Is Not Human
www.theatlantic.com

And here's how to build your own little traffic bot, even though you shouldn't

DODOcase | DODOcase Folio for Nexus 7 2i with paper notebook
www.dodocase.com

Our handcrafted iPad case is inspired by the journals of our favorite artists. Made by hand in San Francisco using traditional bookbinding t

What Would You Rather Be Doing?
felfoldi.wordpress.com

If you could do anything you wanted to do for a profession — regardless of income, talent, education, or ability — what would you rather be

For Older Runners, Good News and Bad
well.blogs.nytimes.com

Runners over 60 were just as efficient as younger runners, even those in their 20s, though they are more prone to injuries.

David's Social Me
www.zeebly.com

David likes to talk about Business, Social Media, and Finance. He is introverted and optimistic. He post statuses to Facebook most often in

Power Technologies and Services | Innovolt
www.innovolt.com

The Most Powerful Electronics Protection Available. Period. Discover the limitless potential of Innovolt's patented electronics protecti

Asus and Leap Motion Bring Minority Report-Style Gestures to Life | Gadg...
www.wired.com

Creating a powerful new input device for computers might not be easy, but it's easier than convincing people to switch from the mouse to som

Old Age: Life Goes On, and On
www.nytimes.com

It looks as if 110 may soon be the new 100. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

5 ways to avoid burnout at work
money.cnn.com

Here are a few methods, from simple coffee breaks to Panamanian CEO retreats, to avoid work burnout and recharge your business.

facts about soda | 9 Disturbing Side Effects of Soda | Rodale News
www.rodale.com

Need a reason to break your soda addiction? We've got 9, and they're not pretty.

A Greener Clean | Rinnai America
www.rinnai.us

Learn more about the tankless water heater from Rinnai, find tankless water heater rebates & tax incentives, find local tankless water h

Putting Tankless to the Test | Rinnai America
www.rinnai.us

Learn more about the tankless water heater from Rinnai, find tankless water heater rebates & tax incentives, find local tankless water h

Innovolt powers up sales with new surge protector - Atlanta Business Chr...
www.bizjournals.com

Atlanta, GA News - View Daily Local Business News, Resources & more in Atlanta, Georgia.

Weathering the Storm of Grid Activity | Innovolt
www.innovolt.com

Weathering the Storm of Grid Activity. Elements of Disturbance and Protection. BY Powerful Intelligence Manager. POSTED. 12/27/2011. CATEGOR

Don’t Tax the Rich. Tax Inequality Itself.
www.nytimes.com

To keep inequality in check, tax the wealthiest 1 percent when their income gets out of proportion with median income.

Good Minus God
opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com

Atheists do not lose morality by giving up God. Instead, they must find it where it lives: in the natural world.

Credit Card Processing for Startups
davidcummings.org

Recently there was a Flashpoint email thread on credit card processing options for web startups. Processing customer payments is both good (

Dog Banter - Butts
www.youtube.com

It's no coincidence that close friends share similar passions. Banter is better with a friend. Get a friend for your pet. http://www.petsadd

I joined AK Crossfit after several months of Operation Bootcamp, which is also owned by them, after wanting something more "intense" and closer to my house. The people here — from owners Heidi and Jeff to the "gym master" Darren — are great. If you are worried about crossfit being too intense, don't be; they will take care of you. If you are worried about crossfit being too easy, don't be; it's as hard (or easy) as you make it.
Public - 2 years ago
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