Volunteer Spotlight: David Gray
David serves as president and CEO of Daxko. He is responsible for leading the company’s strategic direction, growth, culture, and overall operations. Under his watch, Daxko was named as one of Fortune Small Business magazine’s “7 Great Places to Work.”
Earlier in David’s career, he had the opportunity to conduct substantial consulting engagements for dozens of Fortune 500 companies, leading tech firms, and large governmental entities. Each experience allowed him to observe various corporate cultures and leadership approaches. He brought the lessons learned back to Daxko, using them to shape and build the unique culture that the company is now so well known for.
In addition to his position at Daxko, David is on the board of directors and currently serves as TechBirmingham‘s chairman. He and his wife, Susan, along with their three children, live in Birmingham. They are active members of the Birmingham YMCA and their local church. Follow Dave anywhere from Birmingham to Hong Kong on Twitter @DaxkoDave.
Projects Unlimited, Inc (PUI): What has been the most fulfilling part of your volunteer service?
David Gray (DG): The most fulfilling aspect of volunteer service is the ability to make a difference for the organizations and community that I believe in. Further, as Daxko has experienced success, it is our responsibility to ensure we are active participants and leaders in our community.
PUI: How essential has volunteer leadership been for your own professional development?
DG: I’ve found the boards I serve on to be a great source of professional networking and have benefited from establishing relationships with innovative people from a variety of industries and backgrounds. It also allows you to hone your skills in strategy, leadership and execution often times with limited resources.
PUI: What advice would you give to someone that will be serving on their first board of directors in the next few months?
DG: Patience and participation! Many of us who are leaders in our companies are used to being able to make faster decisions with the expectation that those directives will be executed accordingly. However, with a nonprofit board made up of other volunteers, it requires patience to gain consensus and to wait on responses from busy people with other priorities.
Secondly, in order for it to be a rewarding experience, you must be an active participant. Go to meetings, engage in discussions and brainstorms, and volunteer to lead initiatives. You were asked to be on the board because someone believed you could make a positive impact, so go do it.
PUI: How do you see the technology sector having an impact on the work that volunteer leaders do?
DG: As I mentioned above, many nonprofit organizations are operating with limited resources and are dependent on part-time volunteers. Effective use of the right technology provides efficiencies and communication capabilities that would make our work extremely difficult to accomplish otherwise.
PUI: In a few sentences, please touch on the importance of your industry to the broader economy.
DG: As the US economy moves away from traditional manufacturing and Birmingham’s economy suffers from the departure of banking and other industries, the technology sector can fill many of those gaps. Obviously, it is one of the fastest growing portions of our economy and allows us to remain at the forefront of the world stage.
Additionally, it is where some of the most significant innovations are occurring, and the approaches and techniques used within the technology sector can also benefit the thinking of those in other industries. Finally, the introduction of new technologies often times greatly enhances and improves our lifestyle both at work and at home.
PUI spotlights volunteer leaders of our client groups only. If you are interested in nominating someone for our spotlight, contact Julie today.