Doing math with numbers? Pretty fun! 1+7=8. 10-4=6. Got it, this is easy – hit me with another one. 3x + 1 = 10. Excuse me, what? Did you say “x”? Did you use a letter in a math problem? I think it’s at this point in the math curriculum that many kids say “Yeah, that’s gonna be a no from me, dawg.” I remember I was on the fence with it all myself – until Algebra II with Mr. Ward. He took what was a really tough and normally dry subject and brought it to life with the perfect blend of humor, interactivity, and patience. From that point on, the deal was sealed – I was a math geek for life (shout-out to Mr. Ward!) Beyond helping me develop a love for math, Mr. Ward highlighted for me just how important and valuable it is to be able to teach a complicated subject in a fun and engaging way. The same can be said for ad tech.

Having been in ad tech almost 20 years now, I know firsthand how complex the space has become. 15% of all Google search queries have never been asked before, and I’m pretty sure that the vast majority of these are adtech related (:=P). New acronyms, evolving legislation implications, even Googling about Google, you name it. And the work doesn’t stop after you’ve Googled, it’s really just begun. You have to sift through the results, translate what they’re actually saying, consider any inherent biases and seek out opposing viewpoints, and then put it all together for what it means for your team and your business.

This is what U of Digital does so well, and is the reason why I jumped at the opportunity to become part of the family here! So I’m excited to officially announce that I’ve joined U of Digital as Managing Partner. For over three years, U of Digital has been providing great education and resources to demand side players. In this new role, I bring a complementary background and viewpoint, having worked closely with publishers and supply platforms for the past decade,  heading up the Supply Strategy teams for Tribal Fusion/Exponential/ Publishers and content producers are an essential part of our connected world, creating all of the amazing websites, apps, and platforms we use every day. The more we can help them navigate the ecosystem and support their businesses with ad revenue will be a win for us all!

One final added bonus for me: Shiv is a good friend of mine that I’ve known many years, dating back to our early days together. And when I saw him doing Mr. Ward-like things in the ad tech space, I knew it was a yes from me, dawg.

-Rick Abell