Hello! My name is Tom Kemp, and I live with my wife and kids and dog Chloe in Palo Alto, CA. I will be using this blog to explore privacy, cybersecurity, entrepreneurship and what other topics that may be of interest to me.
A bit of background on me: after growing up in Michigan and going to the University of Michigan — I majored in Computer Science and also in History — I have lived and worked in the Bay Area for 30 years now. I started my career out of college at Oracle. I was later part of the founding team that started up the software company NetIQ that went public in 1999. I also worked for a short time at a leading Venture Capital (VC) firm as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR) before co-founding and being CEO of Centrify, a leading cybersecurity software and cloud services firm.
At Centrify we grew to over $100m in annual revenue with over 5000 customers (including over half the Fortune 50), and as CEO I led a team of over 500 great professionals. We also raised over $90 million from VCs and strategic investors. For my work at Centrify I was named an Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2018 Award Finalist in Northern California. In 2018 I led Centrify through a successful acquisition by the Private Equity firm Thoma Bravo and the subsequent spin-out of Idaptive from Centrify. You can read my business bio on LinkedIn or follow me at Twitter at @tomkemp00.
After selling Centrify, I have been taking time off and keeping surprisingly busy doing stuff like non-profit work with an organization that helps bridge the educational opportunity gap with low income and minority kids, coaching softball and also trying to be helpful to startup CEOs by giving free advice (and yes they get what they pay for). I am currently not formally (e.g. employed, advisor, consultant, etc.) affiliated with any advocacy group or company — just a guy writing a blog.
[Disclosures: Throughout 2020 I have not been paid or employed by anyone. I am on the board of an educational non-profit serving underprivileged youth. In 2019 I was only employed to be a High School softball coach. In terms of political contributions, I have donated to probably over 150 candidates in the 2020 cycle. You can see my larger donations on the FEC site (under Thomas Kemp in Palo Alto, CA). My wife and I volunteer for various political campaigns, e.g. I am very proud she has written over 1000 letters to get voters to vote. In the 2020 election cycle I am volunteering for various campaigns in terms of being co-host and organizing fundraisers, have joined my wife in writing letters to encourage voting and voter registration, being part of a cybersecurity policy committee for a Federal candidate, and volunteering for a California State Proposition (Prop 24). Specific to the last one, all my analysis of privacy laws in this blog was done well before I volunteered and even before the proposal even became a Proposition.]