Johnny Byrd

A little background about myself as the person that runs this myawhatukee.com website. We moved to Phoenix, AZ in December 2010 for a promotion opportunity. It was recommended by the CEO to move to Ahwatukee. I was really sick and tired of the 2 hour commute to work from home in Northern Virginia to downtown Washington D.C. The company that I worked for insisted that I take a promotion, but to really move up within the company, I needed to be at headquarters in Phoenix. We had lived in Montclair (Dumfries) for 11 years in Virginia, from 1999 to 2010. I worked as a computer forensics analyst and testifying expert in support of corporate litigation matters. Before moving to Virginia, I served 9 years in the U.S. Navy as an intelligence analyst / Spanish linguist. I was stationed in the Republic of Panama for 3 years before relocating to San Antonio, Texas for 5 years. In between the military service and moving to Virginia, I worked as a contractor for the Drug Enforcement Administration on title III cellular wire taps providing real time actionable intelligence to DEA agents in the field. Everywhere we went, I had a u-haul connected to my vehicle that carried at least 5 computers and parts so that I could enjoy my hobby in my downtime.

I met my wife who was in the U.S. Air Force when we were stationed together in San Antonio back in 1997. We were married in July 1998. I have been married for more than 20 years and we have three kids. We are empty nesters. (but luckily, our 2 youngest go to ASU so they get to visit often on the weekends)

I have always enjoyed computers and everything about computers, especially video gaming on the PC. I have enjoyed Ultima Online, Everquest, World of Warcraft, Eve, Guild Wars 2, and currently Elder Scrolls Online. When I lost my job after a corporate buy-out in 2013, there were not many positions available for me in Phoenix without a college degree as a minimum requirement. Not wanting to move my family again and really loving living in Phoenix and the Ahwatukee area, I took a position with GoDaddy. This is where I learned a passion for getting websites to the first page of search engine results. It is a real challenge and extremely satisfying to get to the first page. After working there for 6 months, I also discovered that I really hate upselling and Sales positions in general so I moved on to the electronics distribution industry and have been there for over 5 years.

One of the local Facebook Groups that I joined was Ahwatukee411. I really see the potential in the Facebook group of more than 26,000 members. I quickly understood the real purpose of the group. The main focus was to support local businesses and assist local Ahwatukee residents in finding a solution or answer to their questions. The challenge is that sometimes it is very difficult to use the search function within the Facebook group to find answers. People typically end up just posting and re-posting the same questions daily. Also, there are several keyboard warriors that are quick to add some smart ass comment that is not relevant to the post, making it difficult for members wanting to post to avoid being a target of the keyboard warrior ridicule.

I ended up meeting several times with the Admins of the Facebook group and offered my assistance with ideas to help support local businesses. It has been an enjoyable hobby.

Combining my passion for getting websites to the first page of Google search results along with wanting to support local businesses in Ahwatukee, this website, MyAhwatukee.com was born.