Who are your career heroes & why? (Signal Boost!)

ronsoak profile image ronsoak Updated on ・2 min read

You can't be successful alone, heck we are all here on Dev.to because we know that a strong community lifts all up. So I want to know, who are your career heroes and why? If they have a social media presence feel free to link them!

So my career heroes have nothing to do with my field (data) but have steered me so right over the years.

First up is a Danielle Riendeau. Currently Managing Editor at Vice, Co host of the Waypoint Podcast, Teacher at Berklee University, Indie Game Developer, runs marathons, MMA fighter and oh yeah shes also a paramedic. I've listened to her on podcasts for years now (she used to be on Idle Thumbs) and I admire everything she does. The energy and caring she brings to the sixty thousand things she does every week leaves me feeling insecure. That motivates me, I have a good career and a bright future, but I also want to do more, so I can deliver more. I draw, I write here, I'm writing Sci-Fi and I have a new top secret goal as well. All because of her. She has an amazing motto which has been my guiding principle for two years now, it's my permanent slack status (unless I'm sick) and that is: Be good, and be good at it. - I'll write an article on that motto at some point in the future.

Link to her Twitter

My second career hero is Laura Kate Dale who has continued to achieve success in a field that traditionally is for straight white men. Like Danielle, she is a queer woman in video games. As you can imagine, not only are they both fighting their way through a male dominated field, but subject to high volumes of online abuse. In fact, I've had to mute certain terms on twitter because I can't handle seeing the hate speech that goes towards Laura.

Laura is also an overachiever, after freelancing for many many years and doing something like 14 podcasts a week, she is now a News Editor for Kotaku UK, and has broken some very high profile new stories over the years. She still podcasts, and takes part in video DND series. She's also been nominated for a 30 under 30 title. She also has two books coming out this year, one called Uncomfortable Labels, an autobiography about her life as a Gay autistic trans woman, and another book called Things I learned from Mario's Butt, which is all about video bums :). I'm in constant awe at what Laura has achieved, amongst so much adversity. As a queer man I have faced a fraction of what she has faced as I've been able to hide behind my many privileges. That fraction was too much for me to handle. Laura has taught me how to stay authentic to who you are and what you want to achieve, even if everyone around you says otherwise.

Link to her Twitter

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ronsoak profile



Data Analysis Team Lead at Xero in Wellington NZ. Dev tag moderator and passionate about space! All views expressed here are my own.


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Great #discuss topic, I really enjoyed reading who inspires you and where your Slack status comes from.

I'm inspired by Women in the Tech and Data world:

Susan Kare

Susan designed icons for Apple and built the UI into what it is today. I love how she brings a creative eye to tech and she has a great Twitter account.

"Good design's not about what medium you're working in, it's about thinking hard about what you want to do and what you have to work with before you start.”

Ash Huang

Incredible designer, writer and famously 'leaned out' of Silicon Valley to pursue her writing and spend more time with her family.

"Traditionally reserved for teachers, nurses, soldiers and other holders of high-stress jobs, burnout has snuck its way into our privileged hacker dens. Despite free food and beer, most open office environments are akin to bougie sweatshops"

Lilian Grace

CEO of Figure.nz that democratises NZ data by putting into a digestible format for everyone to use.

"Success to us is when we have a culture of people who use numbers in their thinking."

Lyndsey Scott

App Developer, advocate for minorities in tech, creator of tutorials for beginners and one of the most active members on Stack Overflow. She has risen above a lot of hate on Twitter from those who don't take her seriously.

"As the tech industry becomes more and more central to the world economy, I think representation will become more and more crucial."


I followed them all! ❤️


That's awesome! I love hearing who people follow and why, looking forward to seeing more of them here in your post :)


One of my first ever tech talks I attended was seeing @sandimetz early in my career. Not only did the talk specifically help me work through the issues I was facing at the time, I got a role model in terms of practical software development.

I’m not sure I’d be where I am without her work. And I probably wouldn’t have followed it as closely if it didn’t start with an in-person event like that.


Well if that’s not a reason to go follow her, I don’t know what is!


Mine is John Carmack. He can talk for 3 hours straight about a very complicated subject without notes and somehow make it sound simple.


The one who founded Id software?