software engineer
since '05
I am a software engineer living in Oakland, CA, specializing in microservices architectures, Ruby, Go, JavaScript. I also dabble in C/C++, electronics, internet-of-things, and 3D printing. This is my website and blog where I write about technology, culture, Bay Area stuff, beekeeping, beer brewing, meadery, cidery, anythingery.


Looking for a new lead engineer? I'm available for contract and fulltime work right now. My resume is below, but you can also find me on LinkedIn.


Max Thom Stahl

Software engineer, thought leader, maker

About Me

I've worked in a ton of tiny startups and a few big companies. Over the past 15+ years I've built websites for Fortune 50 companies, worked at more than a handful of tech startups, built several products from the ground up, architected microservice architectures, and led teams to greatness.

You can find out (much) more about the kinds of stuff I've done and the kinds of stuff that I can do below. Thanks for looking.



July 2016 ~ February 2020

I was initially hired by a company called Frederick, shortly after it was acquired by another company, Booker. This was later acquired by Mindbody, which was then acquired by Vista Equity Partners. At Frederick I was involved in the initial architectural discussions around major products that are now in use by thousands of people. I was the first git commit on over a dozen different microservices, libraries, internal tools, and standalone services, all of which continue to be used by teams across the whole company.

As the team expanded, I took on the role of my team's scrummaster in addition to still actively working on software projects. I also led a handful of projects in their initial phases and successfully handed them off to teams.

  • Architected and initially built a limited CRM system, from scratch, which was then used by several other Frederick, Booker and then Mindbody services.
  • Executed a massive rearchitecting and rewriting of the frontend of the Frederick web app, replacing a backbone-based app with a modern React one.
  • Led a team focused on synchronizing data between Frederick and Mindbody systems, consuming Mindbody APIs, and translating data between different systems.
  • Mentored less experienced engineers in both an unofficial and official capacity through the company's mentorship program.
  • Acted as Open Source Liaison for Frederick, being the point person for contact on our open-source projects, as well as contacting teams for other open-source products. This mainly consisted of creating and responding to issues on Github.
  • Represented the San Francisco office in the company's Equality Diversity & Inclusivity organization.
  • Actively participated in the recruiting and interviewing process to expand the engineering team over 200% in a year.
Skills used:

Ruby, Go, JavaScript/ECMAScript, Node.js, React, SCSS, SQL


January 2015 ~ April 2016

I worked on a team mainly concerned with translating data back and forth with APIs. Instructure's main product, Canvas, is a learning-management system (LMS) used by many universities around the world. Every school has a different system in place for grading students and tracking their progress, and I worked on the systems that connected Canvas to these Student Information Systems (SIS).

  • Added features and fixed bugs in the Canvas SIS app, which interfaced with Student Information Systems.
  • Added support for new Student Information Systems as needed to support expanding business to schools not using systems we already support.
  • Led important refactoring efforts to improve the reliability of the SIS interface.
  • Sped up the (gargantuan) test suite over 10% as a hack week project.
Skills used:

Ruby, Go, Node.js, SQL


August 2013 ~ August 2014

LendSquare (now sadly defunct) was a crowd-funding platform where small businesses could ask their community for small loans, for example to pay for a small remodel or new kitchen equipment. As the first full-time engineer working at the company, I took over a codebase that had been written by contractors and molded it into a reliable product ready for users.

  • First full-time engineer and therefore in charge of building out an initial engineering team.
  • Led an engineering team that reached a maximum size of 3.
  • Participated in 500 Startups' 10th cohort (but didn't get funding).
  • Helped conduct user interviews to fine-tune the product in its early stages.
Skills used:

Ruby, JavaScript/ECMAScript, HTML/CSS, SQL

Trunk Club

May 2012 ~ Jan 2013

Built multiple customer- and employee-facing web apps and APIs to support mobile apps while breaking apart a monolithic Ruby on Rails app into microservices.

  • Broke apart a large monolithic Rails app serving both customers and employees into a collection of microservices and UIs able to serve customers and employees through both web and mobile apps.
  • Worked closely with product managers and other stakeholders to build robust tools for sales and customer support.
Skills used:

Ruby, JavaScript/ECMAScript, HTML/CSS, MongoDB, Redis


University of California, Santa Cruz

BS, Computer Science
2001 ~ 2005

Finished all requirements for my CS degree except a general education requirement, which I was unable to complete at the time because of lack of funding.

Cedar Shoals High School, Athens, GA

College prep, vocational diploma in graphic arts/photography
1997 ~ 2000

Had the good fortune of attending a public high school with a good vocational program, where I specialized in graphic arts, including photography, lithography, and screenprinting, while also taking AP and honors classes in regular academics. My minor specialization was in automotive technology.

Other stuff

My wife and I have been beekeepers since 2019 and have a couple of hives in our backyard. We sell the honey but also use it to make mead.

All aspects of our farm at home are monitored by Internet-of-Things style devices I've designed, engineered, built, and tested.

I've been fascinated by electronics since I was a kid, and now build (sometimes custom) electronic musical instruments as a side gig.

(c) 2005-2020 max thom stahl
find me on instagram | twitter