William Thompson
Manager, Software Engineering
Seattle, Washington - Recommendations (LinkedIn)


I am a decisive, results-oriented leader. I've been doing software development and operations since 1997. My experience includes operations, creating scalable software, front and backend web software, REST based SOA, enterprise systems integration, configuration management, automation, and continuous integration. I've also been a lead for small engineering teams since 2004, providing mentoring, technical dialectics, and general oversight.

Specialties: process automation, integrating enterprise systems, continuous integration, automation, configuration management, development of scalable software, leading engineering teams


Sr. Software Engineering Manager, Walt Disney, Seattle, WA (09/2016 - present)

2016 LTI Award Recipient

Manage software engineering across the Tools and Automation organization.  My organization is 20+ people across 3 different functional roles, business intelligence, orchestration, and application development.

The Business Intelligence team works on developing and maintaining a data warehouse for various kinds of reporting.

The API/Application Development groups develops foundational REST API services and web applications for internal IT groups. Our applications and services are typically self service and facilitate automation.  We use a measured iterative, incremental methodology and development practices. Our customers are the system engineers and system administrators at Disney.

The Orchestration group develops orchestrations as an extension of the ITSM system (ServiceNow).  These orchestrations are developed on behalf of, and in collaboration with our internal customers.  We automatically fulfill tickets for provisioning/decommissioning of servers, VIPs, WIPs, etc. We also work with policy owners to refine their processes/runbooks. Our customers are the system engineering, infrastructure groups and tier one support in at Disney.

All teams use light weight adaptive Agile and Lean practices in development.

Roles and Responsibilities:

    • Release high quality, high value solutions to internal customers
    • Product management and communication
    • Collaborate on all design and architecture
    • Continually drive to improve our SDLC and SLC
    • Push direct reports to partner and collaborate with internal customers
    • Mentoring and growth of directs reports

Software Engineering Manager, Walt Disney, Seattle, WA (12/2013 - 09/2016)

2014 and 2015 LTI Award Recipient

I manage 2 groups (10 people) within the Tools and Automation Team.

The Software Development group develops infrastructure REST API services and web applications to facilitate self service integration and streamline service management. We focus on using iterative, incremental development to create and update reliable services as fast as possible. These infrastructure services must be stable and reliable as they are internally consumed by system engineers and system administrators at Disney Technical Solutions & Services in specific and Disney and it's subsidiaries at large. 

The Orchestration group (RunBook Automation) engineers cross enterprise system automation solutions. We automated runbooks on behalf of other teams using an iterative, incremental development model. These run on the ITSM platform (Service Now) and are triggered by tickets such as Change, Request, or Incident depending on if the runbook is for automated fulfillment or automated remediation.  We collaborate with the policy owners in refining runbooks as well as automating them. We serve Disney Technical Solutions & Services in specific and Disney and it's subsidiaries at large.

I provide vision, process management and general oversight. I also lead and collaborate on all design and architecture.
We follow an adaptive development methodology based on Agile and Lean practices.

I am responsible for mentoring, encouraging personal growth and leadership of those I lead. I mitigate personality conflicts and resolve technical disputes to minimize or prevent loss of productivity.

Significant contributor on our groups strategy of self service integration.  This involved the reducing the complexity to consume API services to a low enough level that we are able to leverage non-developer technical people, primarily system engineers and system administrators to write and maintain their own automation integrations (ie. self service integration).

Development Tech Stack(s): Linux(RedHat), Windows Server, MSSQL, MySQL, Python.
ITSM/Orchestration Platform(s): originally CA Service Desk/CA ITPAM migrated to Service Now
(I was the lead responsible for the migration of Orchestration from CA IT/PAM to Service Now)

    • Orchestration: Server Provisioning (virtual/physical, IP, DNS, Storage, etc)
    • Orchestration: VIP Copy, Decommision
    • Orchestration: SSL Certificate Renewal
    • Orchestration: DNS A Record Provisioning
    • Service Now Smart Proxy (automatic session management, queuing, logging)
    • F5 Management Web App
    • REST API for Monitoring As A Service
    • REST API for CA/Unicenter Service Desk
    • REST API for F5 iControl
    • REST API for SolarWinds Orion Network Performance Monitor

Staff Software Engineer, Walt Disney, Seattle, WA (06/15/2009 - 12/2013)

  • 2011, 2012, 2013 LTI Award Recipient
  • Built Enterprise Automation Development team from the ground up, responsible for all development practices and policies.
  • Lead of Enterprise Automation Development team providing vision, program design, systems design, mentoring and general oversight. 
  • Development platform(s): Linux(RedHat), Windows(Server), SQLServer, MySQL, Django, Apache, nginx.
  • Implemented development methodology based on on Agile and Lean practices.
  • Implemented a standardized toolchain, continuous integration, rapid release cycle, automated packaging and availability.
  • Initiated practices such as Acceptance Test Driven Development, collective ownership, and continuous code improvement.
  • Initiated automated analytic tests, ie. lint, copyright attribution, coverage, static analysis, etc
  • Software development primarily in Python. We utilized a high degree of metaprogramming to minimize codebase size, reduce defects and provide consistent behavior.
  • Provided operational support of all systems development through to production.
  • Evangelized configuration management ideals and automation in general and through projects.
  • Lead or oversight on projects:
    • Email-Service Desk Gateway
    • F5 Management Web App
    • REST wrapper around CA/Unicenter Service Desk
    • REST wrapper around F5 iControl
    • REST wrapper around SolarWinds Orion Network Performance Monitor

Security Consultant, ICreditVision (09/2009)

  • Ran a Blackbox Vulnerability Assessment on a single IP address.
  • Created a Penetration Test plan based on results of Vulnerability Assessment.
  • Created a report on the results of the Penetration Test and the Vulnerability Assessment.
  • Communicated with the customer at every step of the way to provide as much clarity as possible.

Lead Software Engineer, CarDomain, Inc, Seattle, WA (09/07/2005-06/12/2009)

  • Developed software in Perl (mod_perl), Ruby (Rails), Javascript, Rake, Java and sh on CentOS using the Agile Methodology.
  • Development platform: Linux (RedHat, Fedora, CentOS), MySQL, Oracle, Apache, mod_perl, Rails.
  • Lead on numerous projects where I:
    • Collaborated with business owners on requirements
    • Performed due diligence on technology choices, designs, and risk mitigation
    • Facilitated communication between technical and non-technical people
    • Involved throughout the entire project lifecycle.
  • Initiated, lead and managed many infrastructure projects such as continuous integration, toolchain project, application config simplification, etc.
  • Lead and managed many user facing projects such as Groups Bulletins, Related Rides, Ajax Webservices Framework, etc.
  • Integration with many third party services using different technologies. ie. (SOAP, REST, Javascript)
  • Created analytical and functional tests to improve code quality.
  • Drove the creation of development sandboxes which helped to streamline development.
  • Mentored and collaborated with the other developers.
  • Numerous changes which lead to more efficient development as well as increased product performance.
  • Identified and resolved issue which accounted for ~15% load savings across the database, all webservers, and total network traffic.
  • Identified and resolved numerous issues which impacted uptime or response times.
  • Created mod_perl REST consumers for Rails REST services and vice-versa.

Contractor, Isilon Corporation, Inc 04/05/2005

  • Updated website per business requirements.

Contractor, Isilon Corporation, Inc 08/02/04 - 09/19/04

  • Evaluated existing templating solutions to address business problem.
  • Designed and implemented a light-weight templating system.

Lead Tools Engineer, Coco Corporation, Inc, Seattle, WA (07/02/2004-09/03/2005)

  • Developed software in C++, Python, scons and sh on Linux x86, Linux ARM, Windows XP, and Windows CE.
  • Development platforms: Linux (Debian), Windows NT, GCC, Python, Visual Studio cl.exe
  • Lead a team of 3 people.
  • Wrote business case proving importance of repeatable build and the path to having one.
  • Created a shared, auditable, multiplatform build system for C++ and Python on:
    • Windows XP
    • Windows CE
    • Linux X86
    • Linux ARM
  • Made the developer builds a variant of the integration build.
  • Managed the toolchains for all 4 platforms.
  • Automatic provisioning and performance testing.
  • Maintained in-house repository.

Contractor, CarDomain 01/24/04 - 03/01/04

  • Extended functionality of Mantis a PHP based bug tracking system.

Contractor, CarDomain 11/01/03

  • Setup and demonstrated Bugzilla, showing features and limitations.

Development Support Engineer, Isilon Corporation, Seattle, WA (07/01/2001-07/01/2004)

  • Developed software in Perl, sh, and make on FreeBSD and OpenBSD.
  • Operating platforms: OpenBSD, FreeBSD.
  • Solely responsible for all IT and Helpdesk tasks for first 2 years.
  • Created automatic provisioning process for test machines.
  • Extension, maintenance, and troubleshooting of build system (FreeBSD).
  • Redesigned and maintained network topology.
  • Creation and maintenance firewall, corporate webserver, intranet, bug tracking software, cvs repository and backups.
  • Creation and management of numerous internal tools and scripts: build scripts, monitoring scripts, boot floppy installs, reports (histograms) of bug/build and build/performance.
  • Evaluation and ordering of lab equipment(remote power/kvm/serial, racks, cabling, etc).
  • Setup, maintenance, and troubleshooting of all hardware (servers, switches, etc).
  • Maintenance and troubleshooting of all IT services (mail, ssh, dhcp, dns, etc).
  • Design, creation and editing of intranet.
  • Grew and managed the machine room to over 300 machines.
  • Came up with unique cabling solution to address switch testing.
  • Managed relationships with various hardware and service vendors.
  • Managed and configured various networking devices: Extreme Networks, HP, Cisco, Foundry Networks 

Lead Software Engineer, iSyndicate Corporation - San Francisco, CA (03/01/1999-04/01/2001)

  • Lead team of 3 people.
  • Developed software in Perl, Java and PHP on Solaris and Linux.
  • Design and implementation of back-end of data warehouse.
  • CGI/JSP programming in Apache with mod_perl, PHP, and Resin with Weblogic.
  • Maintenance and administration of revision control system (Accurev).
  • Maintenance and administration of MySQL database.
  • Schema design and creation on Oracle and MySQL.
  • Evaluated configuration management software.
  • Tagging and making releases.
  • Installation and maintenance of software packages.
  • Monitored production MySQL server and web servers.
  • Maintained web reports.

Software Engineer, Cogit Corporation, San Francisco, CA (07/01/1997-02/01/1999)

  • Developed software in C++, Perl and make on AIX and Solaris.
  • Programming in C++ with a strong emphasis on portability and maintainability.
  • Programming in Perl using Object Oriented methodology to create prototype web interface.
  • Installing STL-port for cxx(DEC), gcc(DEC & Solaris), CC(Sparcworks).
  • Modified STLPort to work with additional compilers.
  • Handled the migration from gcc 2.7 to gcc 2.8 without interrupting day-to-day development.
  • Maintenance and development of automated build system.
  • Administration of the bug tracking system.
  • Helped to build an ETL tool for POS data.

Engineering Aide, The Center for EUVE(Extreme Ultra-Violet Explorer) Astrophysics (02/1996-06/1997)

  • Design website for the internal testbed group.
  • Created CGI programs in Perl and C.
  • Light administration responsibilities on an SGI Indigo 2.
  • Helping coworkers with program maintenance, specifically in C.


University of California, Berkeley, Cognitive Science BA. with a Minor in Philosophy, graduated 1996

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