Autobiography – Jacob Stewart

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					Management Strategies for a Global Society                                          Fall 2002

         On the day of February 12th, 1966, in Norwich England, the new St Luke's

Church Centre was bursting at the seams for its formal dedication by the Bishop of

Dunwich, the Right Reverend T.H. Cashmore. Halfway across the world, in an area

predominantly known as French Indo-China to the majority of the countries in the

Western world, twenty year-old Army PFC Frederic R. DeLange was killed by what his

official death certificate lists as "Accidental Self-Destruction". In America, in

supermarkets from coast to coast, Werner Klemperer, the actor who played Colonel

Klink on the popular TV comedy show, Hogan's Heroes appeared with his co-stars on

the cover of the weekly Schedu-zine TV Guide. In the Los Angeles suburb of Watts, Ken

Kesey's Merry Pranksters (albeit without Kesey, who was on the lam in Mexico at the

time, running from a felony marijuana charge) and the Grateful Dead, rolled into the

rented Youth Opportunities Center building, setup a high tech, hi-fidelity light and sound

show meant to appeal to and enhance the LSD induced visions for the night of merry

making to come for the young hip kids attending the festivities. The kids attending were

of a generation that would, in the next few years would help to start the Vietnam war

peace movement, let it all hang out during San Francisco's "Summer of Love", and start

to see their values questioned as the violence at the Altamont rock festival dashed their

utopian hopes and produced a much needed wake up call.

         Across the Rocky Mountains away from the cultural unrest of the youth

movement on the West Coast, approximately three hundred and sixty miles from what is

dubiously and unscientifically known as the "Geographical Center of North America"

(Rugby, N.D.), as my Father was living in a Quonset Hut on his second tour of Vietnam

as a Marine Corps officer, I was born on the great American prairie in Sioux Falls, South

Dakota at St. Joseph's Hospital. I was the last of five siblings born to my parents, who

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would soon be divorced and separated by a distance of such personal and geographical

greatness that I would only be in my Father's physical presence twice during the three

decades plus that have followed since.

         My family would move several times during the first three years of my life, as did

many families who were dependant on a military career for income. During this time, I

lived in South Dakota, and in a few cities in Southern California, mostly near San Diego

where the Marines have a large presence. After my parents divorce, my mother and

siblings would move back to South Dakota, which I would soon know as my first real


         Of those times, I have little recollection, however some vivid memories stick in

my mind from this period. As an example, I recall the numerous times my sister and I

would stand in the front of the house, with me on the porch and her near the bottom

step. In an odd gender reversal, I would play the heroine of a campy melodrama, with

her playing the hero come to save me from the burning building. I would scream out

"Monsieur", flailing my arms in an overacting style worthy of Norma Desmond, the has

been actress character of the 1950 movie Sunset Strip, while my sister would in return

call out "Madame!" and I would leap into her arms as if being saved.

         Once, on a dusty August day in what was probably my fifth year of life, as I was

hanging out in the alley behind our home, I remember meeting a shoeless hippy girl in

patchwork pants. She was lamenting the fact that her square father had grounded her

for being out after ten, and now she was going to miss whatever rock group was playing

at the state fair that summer. Later that summer, one of my close friends told me that

a police car had been seen around the corner. Since we lived in a fairly quiet, family

neighborhood of a typical mid-west city, without much of interest happening, we

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ventured down that way to check out what the excitement might be. When we arrived

around the corner in the alley, where the police car was, we saw the alleged

lawbreaking activity first hand. Apparently there was a small party of long haired,

unkempt youngsters wearing denim jean vests and bell bottom pants. Their big crime

apparently being that they were consuming a keg of beer in the garage.

         These events and the general attitude of the very mainstream adults around me

led me to believe that we were on the verge of a very large social change in America,

the cusp of a cultural change fueled by the younger generation. Welcome to the 1970's.

         In 1972, my mother moved the family over 1800 miles to the remote wilderness

of Southeast Alaska. For what turned out to be a very memorable cross country trip, my

mother acquired a black 1960 Cadillac Fleetwood Limousine, complete with bat wings,

individual climate controls for the front and the back, and a row of fold out rear facing

“jump seats” for a couple of extra passengers. Along with the car, my mother also

received an ornate brass decorated bible stand that she still has, after all this time. She

received both in exchange for her 1967 Volkswagen Squareback from one of our next-

door neighbors, who was closing his family run funeral home. His family was

memorable to me in that they were extremely normal, had a large house, and once had

a trampoline in the backyard, which was the first (and one of the only) times I ever took

advantage of such a dangerous recreational device.

         On the trip across country, I remember playing car games that included what

must have been annoying shouting by the kids whenever we would see cows or any

other animals.

         The car broke down near Williams Lake, British Columbia causing a minor, yet

stressful setback for our family in transit. After a day of repairs, we concluded the land

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                          Page3
Management Strategies for a Global Society                                             Fall 2002

part of our journey by arriving in Prince Rupert, B.C. at around 1:00 AM. As a cost

saving measure, my mother had not gotten us a hotel room, and instead had driven

through the night to arrive at the ferry terminal several hours early to line up for

boarding in the morning.

         I remember being awed and slightly spooked as the large car and passenger

ferry arrived in the dark of night, opening it‟s bow like a hungry predator ready to

gobble up the cars. The whole scene was shrouded in fog and the eerie sounds and

smells of the harbor of the small Canadian fishing village attracted my full observation.

         Being so young, I couldn‟t have know just how remote our destination was, but I

was soon to find out that our two day ferry ride would be followed by a float-plane trip

to an inaccessible little company owned logging camp smack in the middle of the

Tongass National Forest. My mother was moving to be near her younger sister Jacky,

who‟s husband owned a road building and blasting company that was contracted to

build logging roads.

         Building roads through this unspoiled old growth wilderness was accomplished

through brute force with D9 Caterpiller™ bulldozers and large quantities of dynamite

and other modern explosives. Little regard was given to environmental concerns in the

camp, where clear-cutting of rainforest old growth cedar of was normal operating

procedure. I observer many instances of animal poaching and illegal petroleum disposal

during my years living there, and the smell of diesel fuel and smoke was pervasive.

         My mother had acquired a job teaching at the Alaska State operated school in

the camp. The camp had only forty residences, mostly single and double-wide trailer

homes, and approximately 40 children in the school, which had two teachers and two

classrooms for grades 1-8. Students wishing to continue their education to the high

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                           Page4
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school level had to move into a large town, which our family eventually did, when my

oldest brother passed that threshold.

         In my years at the camp, which had no paved roads, indeed, no road to

anywhere but the seemingly endless forests on our island, no telephone system, no

television of any kind, I enjoyed a quiet sheltered life learning about nature while

experiencing a freedom that other kids my age could not have experienced. Since our

camp had no roads into town, a small well observed harbor, and everybody in town was

known to each other by first name, our biggest threat to children was from black bears,

or seasonally, the large swarms of blood drinking mosquitoes. Even though I was

sheltered from the nasty news of the last part of the Vietnam war, I remember the buzz

of the adults when Nixon retired. My still forming personality was beginning to show

itself as one of quiet observation, and I left the camp with the feeling that the adults

around me were not of the most sophisticated type.

         When we moved from the small logging camp to the nearby mill town of

Wrangell things still seemed mostly idyllic to me, a voracious learner who liked to

impersonate my favorite Sesame Street characters and read Encyclopedia Brown books.

Here I met many peers my age that convinced me that all people were not as dull and

unintelligent as some of those who I had met in the logging camp. I spent my time

doing typical boy things, little league, cub scouts, singing in the school choir, playing in

the school band. Few commercial entertainment opportunities existed in our small

town, save a small theater playing second run movies, (we never got Star Wars,

although we watched on television the lines of people waiting to see the movie in bigger

cities), and a small 70‟s style burger and fry shack that had some rock n‟ roll records in a


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         Other favorite pastimes in our small town included watching high school

basketball, in which my two older cousins had risen to be two of the best players on the

team. They had also been forced to move into town with us when they reached high

school age, and my uncle and aunt build a large family house far out on the only road

that went more than one mile in our island town.

         I remember the social bonding I felt when families and neighbors got together in

the winter of 1977 to watch Roots, which moved many people around me, and seemed

to bring to the surface the openness and understanding that defined the decade of the


         I spent most my time watching and emulating Evel Kneivel‟s daredevil antics on

ABC‟s wide world of sports, which we got on the town‟s small cable TV system. They

didn‟t have any satellite receivers, so they taped the shows from Seattle stations and

flew them up on videotape where we watched them the week after the shows original

airdate. Later when visiting friends in Petersburg, and Skagway (the boom town that

marked the beginning terminus of the White Pass Trail during the Klondike gold rush of

1897), I realized that they shipped the same set of tapes to the next most northern

town in a chain, to the point where viewers in Skagway were watching shows that were

at least a month old. Additionally, I spent time on extra-curricular scholarly activities

such as the toastmasters, which I joined and participated in during the 4th grade.

         My family moved to Olympia, Washington in the summer of 1978 while I was

visiting my cousins in eastern Washington where they had moved the year before. My

mother didn‟t tell me we were moving, but instead sold many of my things, packed the

rest, and sold the house while I was spending the summer learning a more countrified

way of life, tending horses, making fences, bucking hay bales for winter storage,

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amongst other servitudes. It was during this summer that I felt I came of age of

responsible humanity, although remaining a child at the tender age of twelve I started

to understand personal responsibility and obligation towards other human beings.

         A large part of my learning experience was had on a trip I took across the

country with my cousin Dianna, who was my age. Her family‟s live-in horse trainer and

a local girl were hired to drive us to Atlanta, Georgia where we were to pick up two prize

show quality horses that my uncle had purchased, and bring them back in a horse

trailer, showing them at state fairs and horse shows throughout the south on our way

back. We stayed in hotels across the country, moving from town to town, winning the

top or second prize more often than not as our merchandise turned out to be as top

quality as the trainer had believed them to be.

         During this trip, I drove a vehicle for the first time, learned about the diversity of

the American continent and the wide variety of cultures and customs I experienced

traveling back and forth across the country. When I returned from the trip, I was

informed I was not going back to Alaska, but was instead moving to Olympia, where my

mother thought we would be better off, due to limited opportunities in the small mill

town where she had worked as a teacher.

         My mother, who had now spent almost ten years raising us as a single parent,

quickly got a job working for the Washington State House of Representatives. While her

new job proved to open some doors of opportunity for me later, it‟s most immediate

affect was in the amount of time my mother now had to spend working, including late

into the night, especially during the legislative session.

         During the next few years of my life, I spent as much time finding things to do

on my own, including riding the bus out to Evergreen to swim in the pool, hanging out

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                             Page7
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at the local video arcade riding my bicycle in the cemetery off North Street in Tumwater,

walking along the golf course in Tumwater Valley, or exploring the acres of empty kegs

in the truck yard near the Olympia brewery, as I did in more formal activities, such as

school sports, or playing in my high-school marching band. It was during these years

that prepared me for independence that I first learned the value of working for money.

Although I had taken other jobs before, I was not much interested in working until my

paper route started putting some real cash in my pocket taking some of the pressure off

my mom to pay for my adolescent expenses. I believe I learned something of the

entrepreneurial spirit during this period, as paperboys of the time were independent

contractors collecting their own fees directly from their neighborhood subscribers, and

depositing the wholesale amount due directly into the newspaper‟s bank accounts at a

local bank branch.

         In high school, I was never much of an athletic “jock” type, opting out of the

strenuous labors of P.E. class. I took an extra year of Math and French instead. Having

learned about computers from our school‟s iconoclastic calculus teacher, I desperately

wanted to learn more, but our school only offered two computer related classes. One

was strictly meant as a secretarial class, teaching mostly young women word

processing, the other a Fortran programming class that had to be taught offsite at the

local community college. Each morning our class was bused to the school, had a short

class session, and then spent the rest of the hour entering our programs on punch cards

and assembling them so that the college‟s computer science students could run them as

“batch jobs” at night, and we could see the printed output in the morning, fixing our

errors and resubmitting the job to be run again the next night.

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         Having seen the inadequacies of not having a single computer in our school in

1982, not even in the administrative offices, my friends and I got together a committee

of students to help convince the administration to purchase some Apple ][„s for use in

the classroom. We met with the administration, put together an estimate of needed

equipment ($26,000 for ten Apple ][„s with one color monitor and one printer), and

testified before the school board as to our opinion of the school‟s needs. To our

amazement, the school board approved our request in toto, doubling the amount of

allocated money so that the other high school in the district would receive a duplicate

set of computers for their use.

         From this experience I started to learn how our system of government rewards

those how become involved, and started to understand something I would hear

described only later; “the world is run by those who show up”. This was a concept that

I feel was very important for my future development.

         The other important formative event of my high school years was the time I

spent working as a page for the House of Representatives. Since my mother was a

legislative insider, a full-time employee that supervised the flow of bills in the work

room, performing tedious bill monitoring tasks, and publishing daily bill journals, status

reports, indexes and daily digests so that legislators and lobbyists could keep track of

the overwhelming flow of paperwork moving through the bill room, I was privileged to

be asked to work as a page several times during what proved to be some tough

legislative times in our State‟s history. The benefit I gained from my quiet observation

of the process, listening to our legislators and state agency employee‟s discussing and

making policy was immeasurable compared to similar time spent in the classroom. I got

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                             Page9
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to learn the inner workings of our state government and learned a lot about civic duty

and service during my service during three different years of sessions.

         During one particularly tense week I served as a page, the legislator from

Vashon Island, Peter Von Reichbauer, a lifetime politician who is now a King County

Councilmember, crossed the aisle in the state senate, wresting control from the

democrats and giving it to the republicans. After this happened the mood and tenor of

the debate in the Legislature seemed to change. The democrats were ordered our of

their offices over the weekend, the session staff being “recruited” to work through the

weekend moving desks and file cabinets. Also during this same week, the Republicans

raided the Senate Democratic print shop, accusing a legislator of using the print shop to

print banned campaign material. I utilized some creative rule bending by using my

page‟s jacket to place myself within earshot at the hastily called press conference,

attempting to witness history as it was made, and learning a great deal about leadership

and governance in the process.

         I was often called up to serve during special sessions, which often meant “times

of crisis” for the state, such as the one described above. Each and every time I served

as a page, I learned something new and felt it was a valuable learning experience.

         It was about this same period in my life when I rediscovered Evergreen as a

valuable community resource. I often spent time hanging out at the college, either

coming out to watch a film on campus, or utilize the school‟s computer lab resources.

Evergreen had to spend a considerable amount of effort in outreach to the community

during those years, as the Legislature‟s perennial threat to close the school was

considered much more of a reality during the early 80‟s due to the prevailing political

climate. As such, the school was attempting to share it‟s resources with the community,

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and they allowed non-students to access the academic mini computer (“B System”),

from which I got my first taste of the potential of collaboration in a multi-user computer


         During my frequent trips to the computer center I did spend some time

competing against my friends and Evergreen students playing computer games, but I

also spent a great deal of time quietly learning programming, and academic interaction

through the use of the computer‟s online discussion program, which allowed any user to

create a conference (similar to the Web Crossing™ web-based conference board used at

Evergreen today) on any topic, ranging from humor to philosophy to computer related

subjects. From this experience I learned the value of collaborative learning, where one

learns from the diverse discourse of ideas and peer review.

         I also spent some time working on my computer programming skills, hooking up

with some students who had inherited stewardship of a graphical multi-user computer

game project that simulated an adventurer‟s exploits in a dungeon, killing mythical

monsters in a quest for treasure and prestige. I was able to contribute several

programs to the game, including some innovative and fun casino game routines, which

innovatively used the computer terminal‟s text ability to simulate graphics and

movement in real time.

         When I graduated from high school in 1984, it was a natural choice for me to

attend Evergreen, although my grades in high school were marginal I was admitted on a

probationary basis with the stipulation that I could not change my core program until

after one full year. I had not been able to get into the core program I wanted, and

instead ended up with a class called “The Paradox of Progress” that melded Western

philosophy with Shakespeare and science in an attempt to introduce students to the

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                         Page11
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emerging concept and perils of “Globalization” although we didn‟t use that term back

then. Being poorly prepared for the onslaught of classical western thought, and feeling

the urge to get a little farther from home, I transferred after my first quarter and started

attending Eastern Washington University, with its more traditional class structure. I

continued to attend there for the next two years, living life among the multitudes of

students who mostly came from small towns with agricultural economies and a strong

protestant religious leaning. Having spent too much time straining my brain at math

during high school, I decided to take what I felt were much easier classes, in subjects

including history, economics, geology, astronomy and philosophy.

         Of course all good things must come to an end, and my ability to fund my

continuing education quickly became one of them. Not wanting to put any further

monetary pressures on my mother, who had generously found money to help keep me

in school, I agreed to come home and take a session job with the Legislature, working

under the Republican Caucus in the word processing center, a position which was

partisan at the time, but became non partisan after the illegal campaign scandals that

rocked the Legislature in the early 1990‟s.

         We were often asked to fill out fictitious vacation request forms, to be turned in

only if the other party caught us working on campaign issues. We would then be

shuttled off to some Representative‟s quiet office where we would work the phone

banks asking registered voters to vote for the parties‟ candidates. Or perhaps we would

be asked to conduct partisan phone polling. At one point we were sent by the Caucus

staffers to the Republican Party headquarters, where we met up with Jennifer Dunn,

who is now one of the U.S. Senator‟s representing our state in Congress. I remember

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                         Page12
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her joking that it was generous of the House Republicans to send us up, to stuff

envelopes and tabulate polling information for critical campaigns.

         After my session job ended, I drifted between many temporary jobs, the most

memorable legitimate work being when I worked as a security job in downtown Seattle,

in the main branch and corporate headquarters for Rainier Bank. My job was to work in

the alarm center during the swing shift, monitoring branch alarms and patrolling the

office buildings in use by the bank at night. I left that job quickly, after experiencing

concerns that the quality and character of the individuals hired for the job posed what

seemed to be an unacceptable risk to my own safety and well-being. My concerns

proved to be valid, as within two months of leaving that job, I was contacted by heavy

handed corporate security types, who were investigating a series of petty thefts, in

which the guards were the main suspects. One of my friends who worked there was

caught stealing parking fee money from one of the garages in the office building, and

other thefts occurred, including the loss of a firearm from the alarm center. From this

experience I learned that in order to gain loyalty and integrity from employees, it is

necessary to treat them with the respect due them. The employees who were supposed

to keep things secure turned on the company, betraying them, because they felt they

were marginalized and treated unfairly, including the obscenely low minimum level

wages the guards were paid to protect so much institutional money.

         After that I spent time working for an innovative cell phone and paging startup

company that was created after the breakup of AT&T into the regional Bell operation

companies that evolved into USWest (now Qwest) locally. An entrepreneurial start-up

atmosphere prevailed, although the corporate culture quickly evolved into a game of

counting the bottom line, and a company reorganization put accountants in charge of

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every department, disempowering front line employees who served the customers. I

believe this atmosphere created a hostile work environment and caused the customer to

suffer frustrating service delays and difficulties. I was hired full time before the

reorganization and had received glowing praise from my boss regarding my performance

and innovative nature. After the reorganization, I was constantly belittled, talked down

to, and meant to feel unimportant, as my supervisor‟s style and mission seemed to

require cutting costs in every area, while the organization lavished huge commissions on

the sales staff, frequently sending them to Hawaii and giving them expensive perks, I

was told I had to start working overtime for free, in order to save money. After trying

to work within the system to better serve the customer. My supervisor and I came up a

solution that creatively bent the rules to help reduce waste and create efficiencies by

restocking used equipment and distributing it directly to the customers, resulting in over

$10,000 in additional revenue in the first three months, all with equipment that was

previously being discarded. Ultimately, I was fired for working outside the system, in

my attempts to help improve customers‟ service. As my bean counter boss showed up

at my location to show me the door, she asked “What is all this stuff doing here, and

where did this money come from?” She had not even realized where the revenue I was

bringing into the company was coming from, even though my immediate supervisor

approved the program and booked the revenue under “used equipment sales”. Through

this experience I learned how important it is to pay attention to considerations of

political capital in a work environment, especially a competitive corporate environment.

         A few months of living in Bellevue in the heart of the corporate world while being

apart from it made me realize that living in the crowded city had done terrible things for

my quality of life, so I decided to make a drastic change.

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                          Page14
Management Strategies for a Global Society                                           Fall 2002

         In the early winter of 1990, I sold my furniture, packed my Volkswagen van with

everything left that I could fit inside, and moved to Alaska. I felt I could take advantage

of the atmosphere that so appealed to me as a youth. After deciding I didn‟t want to

create a complete culture shock, I chose the state capitol, Juneau as my destination,

thinking that a city of 30,000 and seat of state government would suit my needs and I

hopped a ferry to Alaska for the second time in a life changing transition.

         In Alaska I worked a variety of jobs, including administrative work at the front

desks of two large popular hotels that served the large number of cruise ship

passengers and other tourists that would come through town every summer between

May and September. Slowly moving back up the employment ladder, I took computer

jobs at a few state agencies, including working on database of information on petroleum

industry technical standards for the State‟s environmental watchdog agency. After a few

years in Alaska, and again closely associated with computers, and unhappy with a job

transfer to Anchorage, an unsightly urban blight of a city located in the central Alaskan

peninsula, I decided to move back to Washington in the quest for greater work


         In the following years, during my grandmother‟s declining health I worked only

part time, staying home in an attempt to be a little help to her, assisting her with getting

in and out of bed, and doing simple tasks for her. I worked during this time at various

jobs including one at a local family owned dairy products distributor, and a cooperative

owned by a consortium of credit unions to process cancelled checks and host their

financial databases on a shared mainframe computer.

         I took advantage of some of the free time I had by re-enrolling in Evergreen to

take some night computer programming classes. It was this similar thread of work skills

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relating to multi-user computer environments that I had in many of my previous jobs

that I would use as a springboard to a management career and hopefully

entrepreneurial and financial success.

         While working for the data processing cooperative, I utilized the Internet, which

was still a very young tool and not yet widely adopted, to research various computer

network configurations, essentially “bootstrapping” the knowledge necessary for me to

help perpetuate and help grow the commercial Internet. During this time, I began to

run a small community bulletin board system, (BBS) which allowed my friends,

acquaintances, and some complete strangers the ability to dial in with their computer,

and read Internet discussion groups and send and receive Internet e-mail. When the

new Internet protocols known as the world wide web (WWW) started to become widely

implemented, I realized that we were again on the edge of cusp in history, with an

information revolution at hand, again largely driven by the younger generation. Only

this time, I could include myself in that generation that was driving changes to our


         In January of 1995, a friend that I had introduced to the Internet approached me

and asked me if it was possible to get a high speed connection to the Internet, and how

much would it cost? I explained to him about telecommunications circuits, network

packet switching, and other concepts and said that the easiest way to get a fast

connection, which was as T1 line (1.5mbps), was to find somebody to help pay for it,

and that we could resell part of the bandwidth to recoup some of our costs. He

suggested that he might have a friend that had some money to invest in such a venture

and the concept for my newest and greatest venture to date was born. I would design,

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                          Page16
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open and operate an Internet service provider in order to help pay for a high-speed

connection, which we would place in a downtown office location for centrality.

         Six years later, my partners and I sold the company that we created (OlyWa.Net)

that year with an investment totaling around $100,000 for over $2,000,000 in cash and

stock. Unfortunately for us, between we made the deal, and the time it closed, the

Nasdaq tech stock market value bubble burst and much of our hard earned equity was

washed away along with the largest amount of investor value lost since the great


         In building our company, we used a mixture of entrepreneurial, small business,

and corporate style cultures to create what we believed was a very efficient customer

oriented organization. During those years, we were constantly praised by local business

and community leaders for the excellent service our Olympia based company provided,

as well as for our community involvement.

         Within a year of selling our company, management and political differences

between the group of original entrepreneurs and the new owners, drove us out of the

company we had founded and grown. Within one year from that, the new management

was forced to declare bankruptcy due to financial inadequacies in their business plan.

         The hardest lessons that I learned during this time were the ones related to

human resource management. While we always were very generous to our employees,

giving them the flexibility and responsibility to run things within their own “sphere of

operation” but also by encouraging them with friendly team-building social activities,

and frequent unannounced perks, such as buying lunch for all the employees in the

office, or taking the technical staff out to a hockey game. During this time, we often

employed students as Interns, with some of our most colorful stories being the ones

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                         Page17
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that involved Evergreen students. We allowed our employees to be who they were,

encouraging them to contribute how they could, within the confines of our needs.

         Also during this period, I began to get more involved in helping to shape policy

on a state level. I co-founded and operated the Washington State Internet Lobby,

frequently testifying before state House and Senate committees and before King County

Metro and Seattle City Councils regarding the monopolization of Internet access over

public utility cable systems. In addition, I was elected to the board of directors of the

Washington Association of Internet Service Providers, and later as their Vice President, a

position that I hold to the current day.

         As my active role as a successful local entrepreneur slowed down to where I

could start taking time for myself again after 6 years, I met my beautiful “wife to be”,

Glenys, who had previously had a crush on me when we attended the same high school

years earlier, and we were married on October 20th, 2001, at St. Michael‟s Westside

Church in Olympia, with the reception a short drive away in the Evergreen Library

building, 4th floor exhibit space.

         After my wedding, my bride and I took a two part, eight week trip to Europe

which allowed me to see just how sheltered we Americans are from the multi-lateral

political attitude that has evolved in the rest of the world, particularly Europe. Seeing

the wide cultural and personal difference between the people of the United States and

the people of Europe, I determined to learn more about the benefits of global

institutions and the interaction between sovereign states in our modern world.

         One constant I noticed in my travels throughout Europe, (mostly northern

Europe, but also Great Britain and Ireland), was that the pace of change, economically,

socially, and politically was increasing, even in areas that had largely been spared

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                          Page18
Management Strategies for a Global Society                                              Fall 2002

revolutionary change during the Industrial revolution. In my opinion this was in large

part due to increased interaction and communication made possible between peoples by

the widespread adoption of Internet technologies. People in Ireland were sharing ideas

and suggestion with people who were living harsh economic and political conditions in

Belarus, Hungary, the states of the Former Yugoslav Republic, etc. The flow of ideas

and philosophy could no longer be controlled like the flow of people, with “iron curtain”

border crossings and oppressive totalitarian regimes. Europe, scarred almost to the

point of destruction by the wounds of World War II was finally opening up again, with

borders disappearing and a powerful economic union supplanting the arcane system of

national banks, and doing away with the need for frequent and costly currency


          On my return home to Olympia, I was determined to learn more about how

globalization is affecting our national and international political and social institutions,

and how these changes could be guided for the betterment of humankind. I started

studying the U.S. role in multi-national organizations, and quickly found myself

becoming dismayed, my biggest disappointment being how these issues are covered (or

ignored) by the mainstream U.S. press. I had already taken a liking to European news

sources, as I feel they do a better job at being objective and reporting in-depth on

complicated issues. My opinion of the U.S. press is that only a small portion of the news

they produce is suitable to educate 7th and 8th graders about social studies issues, and

the rest is worthless, unfortunately.

         So, (drum roll please), I decided to rejoin the multitudes of students engaged in

academic pursuit, and re-enrolled at Evergreen (for the third time) to learn about

Globalization and hopefully add some skills to my management tool-belt at the same

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                            Page19
Management Strategies for a Global Society                                         Fall 2002

time. I consider the learning process to be life long, and I hope to be able to continue

to grow and enhance my understanding of people, things, and situations.

Jacob Stewart – Autobiography                                                       Page20

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