Meet the Team: Joel Reed
written by Maya Guevara 12/4/2020
A year ago today, Joel Reed officially joined NephōSec as Software Engineer. Since then, he’s been busy. Joel is an important asset to the team, so without further ado, we wish Joel a Happy One Year with NephōSec and we hope you enjoy getting to know him a little better!
An Interest in Tech
Like many in the field, Joel’s interest in technology began when he was young. His earliest memory is of when he was three or four years old, playing Original Mario on his Nintendo, and that passion of video games only grew as he got older. As he describes it, while playing video games was fun, Joel was more interested in the technology behind them all. His curiosity kept him wondering how that technology was even possible, how raw elements could be put together in such a way to do computations and display on a screen.
Then, when he was about 9 years old, he built his first computer with random, leftover computer parts. It was after he built that first computer that his interest in programming began, Joel was able to learn about command line and different programming languages – piecing together the puzzle of how computers actually operate and what roles each component within them has. Now, he describes building computers like “adult Legos”.
Although Joel was always interested in technology, he entered Ohio State University as a pre-med major. After a year, he realized pre-med wasn’t his passion and instead took a Java programming class. He fell in love with the whole lifestyle and switched to become a Computer Science/Computer Engineer double major at Wright State. It was at Wright State that he was truly able to dive into different projects that brought him joy, one of his favorites being the opportunity to build a circuit that runs the lights in a 4-way intersection. Building something that had a tangible, real-world application cemented his interest in Computer Science.
Working with NephōSec
Joel’s journey with NephōSec started in August of 2019, when he was hired as an intern. Joel had been good friends with Shay for around ten years – the two always had similar interests in technology so when Shay brought up the opening for an internship at NephōSec, Joel was immediately intrigued. After working as an intern for a few months, Joel was hired full-time.
Although his title began as Software Engineer, his role has shifted to include cloud architecture and cloud engineering as well, and he continues to learn and acquire even more skills. In fact, that is one of the reasons Joel loves working at NephōSec. With continuously developing products and a wide variety of clients who have different architectures and needs, there is always something to keep him on his toes and he could never be bored. Especially because the education surrounding Computer Science/Engineering can be outdated with the fast-paced nature of technology, it is even more exciting to utilize a deeper understanding and work in the cloud environment.
Another reason Joel loves NephōSec? The team. The culture, as he describes it, is very fitting. He loves that there is a good balance between work and play – the team gets things done, but they make sure to have a fun time while doing it.
Outside of Work
While technology is Joel’s passion, he makes sure to keep up on other interests and hobbies as well. For fun, he plays video games, reads, and teaches himself guitar. Joel hasn’t learned the guitar formally, but he is self-taught and likes to pick up the guitar and play every now and then. His go-to song? Wonderwall, because you can’t go wrong with Oasis. Another favorite of his artists is City and Colour because they have warm and alive music that not only is great to listen to, but fun to play as well. Additionally, Joel loves cars. When asked what his favorite car was, he responded with a classic Nissan Skyline from Fast and Furious – he has just always wanted that right-sided skyline from the 90s.
For his fun fact, some might want to skip ahead and avoid the gory story: at around 12 years old, Joel was helping his family clear up some brush at his house in the country. As he went to light the bonfire, a gust of wind blew the flames in his direction, burning his arm. He ran back to his house, hopped in a bathtub filled with cold water, and waited for the pain to subside. Since the burn didn’t look bad, he held off going to the hospital. However, the burn became infected so he then went to visit a doctor – who told Joel his arm would need to be amputated. Luckily, they went to see a second doctor who proceeded to “scrape the scabs off” and Joel was able to keep his arm – and develop a high pain tolerance in the process.
And, while that story was disturbing, we are also obligated to inform you that Joel prefers pineapple on his pizza.
The key takeaway? Joel, and all of us at NephōSec, are passionate about what we do.
Come back next week to learn about another of our great team members, or, connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.