by G. Sax, Director of Growth Management, RESO
Welcome to “Three Questions,” an interview series that introduces you to real estate industry professionals, their businesses and how they interact with real estate standards with a goal of humanizing the tech side of the industry, fun included.
This week’s installment is the second of two parts with Dan Ray, Director of Product Development at the California Regional Multiple Listing Service (CRMLS). For this second entry, we left real estate to talk about “The Triangle,” college and photography.
Q1: Even though you work for a California company, you are based in North Carolina, an under-the-radar technology-focused state. You have spent the bulk of your tech career in North Carolina. What do interested NC outsiders need to know?
Dan: The Triangle – Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill – is home to a huge business park called Research Triangle Park. There is lots of biotech there, but also a ton of big corporate tech – folks like IBM, Red Hat, AT&T and SAS. There is a vibrant startup ecosystem around that due to the concentration of tech talent in the area. Similarly, Charlotte is a center for big banking, so you get a strong cluster of fintech around there.
Beyond the obvious tech angle, we actually have seasons here. It gets hot, but not like Florida. Where I live in the middle of the state, we’re four hours from the beach and four hours from the mountains.
Q2: You went to St. Olaf College in the tiny town of Northfield, Minnesota, that actually has another friendly collegiate rival across town in Carleton College. Both schools express an abundance of pride in themselves in an otherwise sleepy section of the world. Can you tell us a fun story from college?
Dan: I’ll start by saying the official city motto of Northfield: “Cows, Colleges and Contentment.” If you know anything about the state, this is about the most Minnesota thing you can imagine.
Three other things I can share:
- There was a Malt-O-Meal cereal factory on one side of campus and a pig farm on the other side. You could always tell which way the wind was blowing.
- CoreLogic’s own [RESO board member] Matt Cohen went to Carleton College, right across town.
- One night, some dorm mates and I bailed out of my ground floor room’s window and laid out on the lawn to see the Northern Lights. They weren’t super vivid, but I’ve seen them!
Q3: Do you know who Man Ray is and has anybody ever called you that accidentally or on purpose?
Dan: It happens a lot.
There are also a lot of Dan Rays in the world, it turns out. The most Google-famous one is, like Man Ray, a photographer, but he specializes in shooting female bodybuilders.
I am not a photographer.