With our largest accumulation of website projects to date, we knew we needed to add another developer into the mix. But we wouldn’t stop hunting until we found the ideal candidate for our company culture. Without further ado, we are delighted to introduce our newest Interactive Developer, Jay Lastrapes!
Gatorworks Welcomes Jay Lastrapes!
How did you get into development? What excites you about the coding life?
I’ve always felt a need for a creative outlet, but I still wanted to solve problems. Web development seemed like a perfect intersection between the two, so I resigned from my previous position in oil & gas and set out to learn everything I could about computers, programming, and software development. I discovered that there’s no better feeling of accomplishment than solving a series of challenging problems to create something great, and so I was hooked. Add in the cutting-edge technologies, open and welcoming communities, and seemingly endless growth potential, and I couldn’t be happier with the career change and landing at Gatorworks.
What takes up way too much of your time?
The dozens of little things during the day that end up taking a little longer than they’re supposed to. A close second would be slow golfers who are undeterred and steadfast in their pursuit to not let others play through, and, of course, my love of all things college football.
PLEASE give us the DL on your last name. Where are you from? Where is your family from?
So my family originates in Opelousas, LA, where my great-something-grandparents, Celeste and Jean Henri Lastrapes, moved to from France in the late 1700s. Fast forward to 1993 when I was 2 years old when my father, John Henry Lastrapes VI, moved our family to my hometown of Jacksonville, FL. After growing up in #Duuuval, I moved to my second home of Baton Rouge to attend LSU and I’ve been here ever since.
What accomplishments are you most proud of in your career?
Making a career change to a field completely unrelated to my original industry. A lot of self-discipline, hard work, and numerous late nights at coffee shops went into learning the skills and technical knowledge required. (I feel like this is also an appropriate time to recognize the continued efforts of the many thousands of anonymous Stack Overflow help forum contributors. Y’all are the best!)
If you could invite 3 real people, dead or alive, to a dinner party who would you invite?
- Anthony Bourdain – for his unrivaled camaraderie, culinary expertise, and love of meat in tube form.
- Robin Williams – He seems like a colorful character who’d have a few stories.
- My dad – for the one-of-a-kind dad jokes and so someone might believe this dinner party actually happened.
What is the best professional advice you have to offer?
The most basic kind of advice: work with integrity and be good to people.
What skills would you like to master at Gatorworks?
I’m really eager to master everything that’s involved with building custom WordPress themes. It’s such a powerful CMS (Content Management System) that makes it easy for anyone to control their personalized online presence. Also looking forward to gaining a better understanding of back-end programming techniques which will lend itself to a more well-rounded skill set. Tucker and Joe (our other developers) and the rest of our team have been nothing short of great to work with so far and I’m excited for the months and years to come.