The Year That Was 2015

A braided beard

What an amazing year 2015 was! The world has experienced such tremendous change, turmoil and upheaval that at times it can all be very overwhelming. A sense of “What difference does my personal 2015 in Review matter?” almost kept me from publishing this post. Yet, I believe that the little wins in my life help keep me focused and grounded so that, in some way, I am addressing the wider, global issues facing our world.

So, here it is. My review of 2015. At least what I can quickly remember and pack into a blog post before 2015 ends.

All Things WordPress

If I had to choose one word that characterized my work in 2015, it would be “WordPress”. Between serving on the organizing teams of a couple of WordCamps and presenting at two as well, it was great to be so actively involved in the WordPress community. I also was lucky to continue to serve as the organizer of the Philly ‘burbs WordPress Meetup, which has been running since May 2012.

  • Co-organized WordCamp Philly 2015
  • Co-organized the inaugural WordCamp US
  • Delivered presentations at WordCamp Philly and WordCamp Lancaster
  • Attended WordCamp Baltimore, meeting my goal to attend one new-to-me WordCamp in 2015. (I suppose that WordCamp US also ticked that box!)
  • Delivered talks at WordPress-focused Meetups in Philadelphia, the Lehigh Valley and Asbury Park New Jersey

Through Tech Impact, I delivered a 5-part webinar series around WordPress as key tool in online marketing. The five separate sessions are listed below:

Exploring New Places

For the first time, I stepped outside of the WordCamp world to attend Prestige Conference in August. It was a very valuable experience and I was able to put several items I learned into practice within the remaining months of the year. It was also the first time that I visited Minneapolis. What a fantastic city!

Attending WordCamp Baltimore enabled me to see that city in a bit more detail than ever before. I enjoyed strolling through Fells Point on a warm Saturday evening.

Running a Marketing + Design Consultancy

As a business owner, the challenge of steadily growing my consultancy is a thrilling one. It’s very exciting to have steered LBDesign along a path of consistent and manageable growth since our expansion in 2009. This past year was another one of growth for the company, with sales up over last year (still working out the final numbers). While that sales pace is off last year’s growth, I was able to reduce costs significantly meaning that 2015 is even more profitable than 2014.

As I have done from the start, I steer LBDesign along a course that enables our little team to work with businesses and charities across the US, UK, and beyond. I very much look forward to growing our client base even more in 2016, all the while focused on building long-term relationships based on trust, communication and respect.

Life in General

Liam Dempsey with a braided beardLife is certainly a lot more than work, so I wanted to include a few notes about life outside of the office:

  • Discovered a new history podcast: Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History
  • Grew my beard long enough to braid it (and then promptly trimmed it)
  • Fastest outdoor 3.0 mile run in 2015: 8:16 minute miles on 03-Dec-2015
  • Worked up a batch of home made BBQ sauce – it was tasty, but not quite good enough to brag about
  • Vacationed in the Poconos, enjoying Lake Harmony and Hawk Falls
  • Sadly, didn’t ride my motorcycle at all
  • Spent a couple of months experiencing a dairy-free diet
  • Made a 10″ dairy-free chocolate peanut butter cup

As I click the publish button on this year end wrap-up, I’d like to take a moment to thank the many family, friends, colleagues and strangers who made this such a memorable year for me. Cheers!

P.S. Seeing the new Star Wars movie did not make this review because I am going to see it at 1:20 this afternoon.