Profile – David Lash - President
Mr. Lash has over 40 years of varied business experience spanning technical, administrative and strategic management roles. For much of his career, he has specialized in bridging the gap between the IT and business worlds as a consultant, trainer and curriculum developer.
Mr. Lash graduated from Stanford University with a degree in English, after which he entered the retail industry where he held increasingly responsible positions in buying, merchandising, store management and operations for major department and specialty stores. As a consumer of IT services, he developed a keen sense of what business users need from information systems which has served him well in the technology world.
As the General Manager of a startup specialty food store and restaurant operation, he developed the business requirements for a point-of-sale system and a mail-order catalog retail application suite, and ultimately participated in the coding process for several application modules when the software development firm fell behind schedule. These were multi-user applications written in Business BASIC for an Alpha Micro computer. Here, he learned the basics of computer programming, database design and software architecture, and the seeds of his long-time interest in computing technology were sown.
A few years later, Mr. Lash decided to make a career change from the retail industry to the computer software industry, and apprenticed himself to a small custom software development firm. He spent a year writing a medical office management package from scratch in ‘c’ on an Altos Xenix system. He then branched out on his own, forming Common Sense Software, Inc., a computer software sales and support company specializing in UNIX based accounting solutions for small business. Shortly thereafter, CSSI became an Authorized Reseller for The Santa Cruz Operation.
Common Sense Software grew, eventually employing up to 13 people. Likewise, Mr. Lash built a strong relationship with SCO, and took several SCO training courses to expand his technical product knowledge. When SCO created their Authorized Education program in 1988, Mr. Lash was invited to become an instructor and participated in their inaugural Train the Trainer program, where he met Mr. Thurmaier. When the Authorized Education Center program was initiated, Mr. Lash opened an AEC in the Kansas City area in partnership with a major SCO distributor and taught the full range of SCO courses regularly and was one of the first SCO Advanced Certified Engineers (ACE). When that partnership dissolved, CSSI relinquished its Authorized Reseller status in favor of AEC status, and Mr. Lash continued to operate the Kansas City training center as part of his ongoing consulting business.
In 1992, Mr. Lash and Mr. Thurmaier joined forces to open The Computer Classroom of Minnesota which operated AECs in Minneapolis, Detroit and Chicago. When Sun opened an AEC program, The Computer Classroom was a founding participant and Mr. Lash was certified to teach the full range of SunSoft courses. As market conditions changed, the company transitioned away from fixed-base classroom operations and merged back into a single corporation, Mr. Lash remains a shareholder and active participant in the day to day business of The Computer Classroom, Inc.
Mr. Lash was also active in curriculum development, first for SCO, then for Univel where he wrote the first UnixWare System Administration courses and delivered them (TTT) to Univel technical trainers throughout Europe and the US. He continues to develop course materials for TCCI client Trend Micro on a regular basis.
For over 20 years, Mr. Lash has continued to consult with many businesses on IT solution designs and architecture including systems for accounting, wholesale distribution, manufacturing, airline crew scheduling, airline maintenance scheduling, telecommunications performance management, telecommunications network deployment, web application deployment and more. His combination of technical and real world business experience provides a unique perspective that benefits both consulting clients and technology students.