Friends in tech: Chris Flannagan

Senior Engineer

Chris Flannagan

Company

Healthline.com

Industry

WordPress

Time in this Industry

11+ Years

Origin Story

Got caught stealing cigarettes from a gas station when I was 12. My parents grounded me for a year. Internet was just becoming wide spread, this was around 1995/1996. I was stuck at home so I learned to build websites on angelfire and geocities. Just kind of stuck with it after that. Folks were willing to pay me hundreds of dollars for a crappy website, thought that was awesome.

After college I was freelancing and living in Europe with my military wife. I’d focused on ASP.NET and Flash/actionscript since my first big client needed those skills (travelresearchonline.com, still around today and using logo I designed for them 17 years ago). By the time she was getting out of the Army I was finishing up grad school at Syracuse and got a job offer at Sarasota Memorial Hospital as their webmaster. I stayed there for three years, still doing ASP.NET and flash.

I left SMH to pursue a start up idea I had. Won’t go into details but it ultimately failed and I got a webmaster job at USF two years later. This site was WordPress, I’d been doing some work here and there with WP but this was the first time I truly focused on it. I absolutely hated working at the university. Having to dress nice every day, chained to a desk from 8 to 5, bullshit meetings, awful commute, that was just not for me and I was miserable.  

A year later I start working on an escape plan, my buddy and mentor, Chris Wiegman tells me if I get really good at WP I can work from home full time for an agency. So I spent my nights learning to write WP plugins, themes, getting better at PHP and js, and after two years at USF and a shitty six-month gig after I finally land a remote agency job with FlowPress. After that, Modern Tribe, where I stayed for three years and grew so much. Loved both of those agencies.

Now I’m at Red Ventures managing the headless WP multi site that hosts healthline.com, medicalnewstoday.com, greatist.com and psychcentral.com and more being added soon.

How has COVID had an effect?

We grew, being the #1 health information website on the web it got a lot of traffic.

A Typical Day

Dog wakes me up to go pee, brush teeth, drink diet coke and make an omelet. Sit down to desk around 8:45 and dive into whatever ticket I’m working on. Check in on slack, do some PR reviews, couple meetings here and there, deploys on Tuesdays.

Current Workspace

Corner of my bedroom I have a desk with macbook on the right, 27″ monitor in front, 23″ monitor to the left. PHPStorm always right in the middle with email behind it. Slack on laptop and browser on left monitor.

Daily Software

PHPStorm, Brave browser, Slack, Outlook, Amphetamine, Docker and Droplr

Contact