NOVEMBER 30, 2010 2:41 p.m. (0)
“I wanted someone who could encourage students to prepare for the coming age of social media,” says Pennington, a marketer and social technology speaker, “and Phil is the go-to man for all things technology.”
Yanov has been organizing technology networking groups in Greenville since 1983.
“It was more or less a hobby group for PC/IBM users when it started,” says Yanov. Now more than 20,000 techies receive Yanov’s technology newsletter and attend learning luncheons and after hours events across South and North Carolina.
“Phil is determined to bring real people together in the real world, face-to-face. He’s done a remarkable job building a sense of community and cooperation amongst technology lovers,” says Pennington.
Yanov came from a small town in Pennsylvania where he lost his father to the mines when he was a young boy. He was the first in his family to go to college. After going to Bob Jones University he decided to stay in Greenville, where he lives with his wife and two children, ages 3 and 5.
He has devoted most of his professional life helping technology professionals learn to network with their peers.
In September 2001, Yanov started GSATC, the Greenville Spartanburg Anderson Technology Council, which provides networking, education, business development, and community service opportunities to career minded technology professionals and high tech entrepreneurs through its newsletter, meetings, job fair, and community training programs. The group meets once a month at Barley’s Tap Room for Tech After Five and once a month at Embassy Suites for a learning luncheon.
The Nov. 10 GSATC Learning Lunch speaker was Dave Edwards, the executive director of Greenville Spartanburg International Airport, speaking about the effect Southwest Airlines will have on Greenville.
“It’s important to figure out how we can leverage the resources of our airport. If I’m building a business in Greenville, it’s important to me to figure out how I’m going to get ideas in and out of here,” Yanov says.
GSATC events are a unique networking opportunity for technology professionals. “When you sign up online we ask you what you need out of the meeting and we print that on your nametag. It starts conversations,” says Yanov.
“What we’re doing is exciting. This guy at one of my meetings said that the biggest deal in his company’s history was made with a guy he met at one our networking events. It’s safe to say that at our events there is a guy there with millions in his pockets looking for the next big thing.”
People were driving all the way from Charleston to attend GSATC meetings, so earlier this year, Yanov added monthly events in Charleston, Columbia and Charlotte. He hopes to organize events in even more cities next year.
“All I ever wanted to be is king of the nerds,” says Yanov.
In December GSA Technology Council will have it’s 7th Annual Gadget Fest, which Yanov describes as a “show and tell” for adults. Members bring their latest high tech gadget to show off including the newest cell phones and “there is always a flying toy,” says Yanov.
“One year a guy brought in a wearable computer like the guys at Boeing use to work on airplanes. Another guy brought in an industrial waterproof computer. He poured a glass of water over it while it was running.”
The self proclaimed technology geek looks forward to seeing the new Google TV and Samsung Tab, the Android’s version of the iPad at this year’s Gadget Fest.
“Tech people are really the closest thing to the wizards of our age” says Yanov. “With just our fingers, ideas and computers we can craft a program that can affect millions of people!”
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