Meet a Roadrunner: David Garcia, Jr. '93 is the COO of Geekdom
(April 5, 2017) -- Meet David Garcia, Jr. '93. As the chief operating officer of Geekdom, he's helping self-proclaimed "geeks" find each other and become entrepreneurs.
Born and raised in San Antonio, Garcia grew up on a small farm in the southwest part of the city. After graduating from high school in 1983, he took a few community college courses.
"I took my basic courses and never really got a good idea of what I wanted to do," Garcia said. "That led me to think I didn't need to go to college, so I just left and went straight into the workforce."
He worked at several different retail jobs over the next few years and began to realize that he had the mindset to be a manager. But he didn't have the degree or skillset to qualify him for the job. Not wanting to go back to community college, Garcia decided to seek out a top-tier education at UTSA.
"There were so many benefits to being a UTSA student," he said. "I was able to work and take classes at the same time, which enabled me to pay my way through school."
He also found the faculty to be supportive and helpful, willing to go above and beyond to help him in his studies.
"UTSA has always felt like a small town, even then," Garcia said. "Now, it's grown and reached new heights, but it still has that sense of community."
Having realized business was his true calling, Garcia majored in management, knowing it was a field of study that could apply to many different career paths. He graduated in 1993 with a bachelor's degree in management and immediately re-entered the workforce full-time.
One of the first jobs he acquired after graduation was managing a computer store, part of a large national chain. He hired a number of promising young people.
"Many of the people that worked under me there had the same kind of drive and ambition that I had at that age," Garcia said. "I tried to be a mentor and pass on my own values and what I had learned.
When the chain folded, the employees moved on, but Garcia stayed in touch with several of them. He accepted a position with Apple, gaining an admiration for the way Steve Jobs brought brilliant people together to create new technology.
Meanwhile, many of his former employees had gone on to work at Rackspace and became affiliated with Geekdom, a co-working space in downtown San Antonio that brings together aspiring tech entrepreneurs and fosters small business development.
At Geekdom, they sang Garcia's praises for his management skills. It wasn't long before he was approached to take on the role of COO.
"Throughout my journey, I've been all about seeing people succeed," he said. "I'm still a manager. I still want to see people grow and develop. At UTSA, I laid the foundation to make myself succeed. That was where it happened."
Do you know a Roadrunner who is achieving great things? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we may consider your suggestion for our next installment of Meet a Roadrunner.
This comprehensive music experience for middle and high school students focuses on developing the musician and the campers playing techniques. Campers will perform with one of UTSA’s concert bands and attend classes that include rehearsals, sectional and master classes and performing soundtrack music.Arts Building, Main Campus
Experience a fun, interactive week at UTSA as new students and their families take the first steps to becoming a Roadrunner.Various locations, Main Campus and Downtown Campuses
Kids from kindergarten through high school will immerse in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math through hands-on activities.Applied Engineering and Technology (AET 0.102), Main Campus and Buena Vista Street Building (BVB 3.328), Downtown Campus
Novice and experienced boys and girls in grades 1-8 will be divided up by age and ability to gain the most skills and knowledge for their level of play.Park West Athletics Complex
Emerging and fluent writers can practice and refine their writing skills, share with others and grow as artisans and thinkers. Each day, students will investigate the art of writing, apply the craft to their own writing, and celebrate what they have done with fellow campers.Buena Vista Street Building (BVB 3.324), Downtown Campus
UTSA Men's Basketball coaching staff and players host shoot, skills, day, elite and parent/child camps and clinics.Convocation Center, Main Campus
Camps is full for this summer. This exciting and interactive camp is designed for high school students. The camp will have interactive workshops, hands-on challenges, tours, panels and friendly competitions.Biotechnology, Science and Engineering Building, Main Campus
This unique camp gives rising junior and senior high school students the opportunity to understand how the ever-changing American criminal justice system works. Students will learn a basic understanding of crime and justice and the roles of the police, courts and corrections.Durango Building, Downtown Campus