I was born 6/8/57 and raised in Windham, New York, in the Catskill Mountains. I graduated high school as valedictorian because the other 39 people in my class couldn't spell "valedictorian."
I moved to Northern California in 1979 after college and have lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since.
I worked at Crocker National Bank, San Francisco, 1979 to 1986, in a number of humiliating and low paying jobs, including teller (robbed twice at gunpoint), computer programmer, financial analyst, product manager, and commercial lender, to name a few.
I moved from the bank to Pacific Bell, San Ramon, California, and worked there from 1986 through June 1995. I worked in a number of jobs that defy description but all involved technology and finances. The most recent job was in a network technology laboratory. My business card said "engineer" but I have never been an engineer by training.
From 1989 until 1995 I worked my day job while doing the Dilbert comic strip mornings, evenings and weekends.
Dilbert is a composite of my co-workers over the years. He emerged as the main character of my doodles. I started using him for business presentations and got great responses. A co-worker suggested I name the character Dilbert. Dogbert was created so Dilbert would have someone to talk to.
On the advice of cartoonist Jack Cassady I bought a book called "1986 Artist Markets" and followed the instructions on how to get syndicated. I drew fifty sample strips and mailed copies to the major cartoon syndicates. You can see them here:Click to see the first fifty strips.
United Media called a few weeks later and offered a contract. I accepted. Dilbert was launched in 1989 after several months of further developing the strip. That was my first cartooning for profit.
Dilbert appears in 2,000 newspapers in 70 countries, making it one of the most successful syndicated comic strips in history.
The Dilbert web site, dilbert.com, was the first syndicated comic strip to go online in 1995 and is the most widely read syndicated comic on the Internet.
I've authored a number of Dilbert and non-Dilbert books.
I worked as writer and executive producer for thirty episodes of the Dilbert animated television show that ran on UPN in 1999 and 2000.
I am co-owner of Stacey's Cafe in downtown Pleasanton, California. And I'm the owner and ironically incompetent active manager for Stacey's at Waterford, in Dublin, California. See www.eatatstaceys.com for details.