Silverpoint co-founder and president Angelo Otterbein is well known to our clients as a hands-on member of the team who has, over the years, shepherded many projects from the very first sales conversations through the eventual launch of a new site and the years-long partnership that follows.
In an effort to spotlight Silverpoint's people, Angelo has volunteered to go first in a series of profiles you'll see posted here here on the blog. Our shtick here is actually genuine: Angelo (Baltimore) and I (Hoboken) coordinated over Skype to bring you the following:
[8/20/12 8:50:55 AM]
Red Abbott: Angelo
RA: You there?
Angelo Otterbein: yeah
RA: You ready?
RA: To take the blog into the 21st and 1/2 century?
Angelo: yeah. i'm ready. let's do this thing.
RA: OK. I should tell you now that I'm going to use the skype transcript as a "cool" blog post format.
RA: Tell me about your own independent school experience
Angelo: I went to a small public school in the country until second grade, until i came home crying every day because I was bored to tears and my teacher got mad at me for skipping to the back of the math book. My mom stayed at home and did not work and my dad was in education, so private school was not an option. St. Paul's School in Baltimore came up by chance and they gave me a scholarship, which was the only way we could afford it. i went for a day visit and nearly wet my pants i was so happy.
Angelo: and the rest is history.
Angelo is typing...
Angelo: My father is an educational consultant specializing in dyslexia, so was also connected to schools and trying to find the right "fit" for a student.
RA: And what about this book? 150 years of SPS? Is it a real page turner? How many weeks exactly did it spend on the NYT list?
Angelo: The sesquicentennial was a big deal for St. Paul's, and I was thrilled to be commissioned to write the school's history shortly after I finished college. I loved it. It took 2 years and for what I was paid, I would have done better working at a snow ball stand.
RA: What did you study in college? How did it help you do what you've done with Silverpoint?
Angelo: I studied English literature at Princeton and got a certificate in creative writing and teacher preparation. I came in as an engineer but bailed the first month from the program because there was so little opportunity to take classes that I thought you were supposed to take in college, like psychology and philosophy and history. I took some Computer Science classes, and did so-so in them. Most of the guys around me were 1000 times smarter. but i've always liked to program.
Angelo is typing...
Angelo: Becoming friends with super talented people in college is what I gained the most, and fortunately a bunch of them are Silverpointers!
RA: I know you're running a ton. When did you get into that? How many marathons under your belt now?
Angelo: i always hated running and never ran until i was mid-thirties. the only reason i started was because i was losing my mind when the kids were so small and Isabella was colicky and I couldn't do anything with them; she liked the motion. So we got a jogger for a present and I just started running. I've run 5 marathons. i'm always middle of the pack, but I like having the goal.
[NOTE: In April, Angelo ran the Ocean City (MD) Half-Marathon in 1:34:02 - that's a 7:10 minute/mile pace!]
RA: Tell us about the kids. What ages? What are they into?
Angelo: Isabella just turned 8 and Emilio just turned 5. They are, of course, the best kids ever. We are deep into Harry Potter legos.
RA: Nice. Hypothetical: If Silverpoint had never made it off the ground, what would you be doing today?
Angelo: If Silverpoint hadn't taken off, I ... am not entirely sure. I love to write, so maybe i would have tried to piece together a living that way, but that's such a long shot. I would started some kind of company one way or another.
RA: When it's Frank's turn to sit on the hot seat, what should we ask him?
Angelo: Where did Vanya get his name, and how important is he to your company's culture?
Angelo: I hear Hoboken's office has been through many iterations. Walk us through the highlights of each office
RA: Thanks, Ange. Talk to you this afternoon.
[8/20/12 9:04:43 AM]
What do YOU want to ask Angelo?