Kevin Decker

Staff Software Engineer

Chicago, IL

Download PDF


Product-focused engineer with experience in building products and teams for high demand environments.


  1. Node
  2. React
  3. Fastify + Hapi
  4. Typescript/Javascript
  5. HTML
  6. CSS
  7. Real Time Web Clients
  8. WebSockets
  9. Web Performance
  10. Web Application Scaling
  11. Application Monitoring
  12. CI/CD
  13. Docker
  14. Nomad
  15. Consul
  16. Django


April 2021 - Present

Staff Software Engineer, Growth Platform

  • Collaborated with data team to build reliable data pipelines and schemas, balancing stability needs of the data team and flexibility needs of the experiment-driven growth team.
  • Represented growth team in engineering-wide initiatives to improve developer experience and cross-team collaboration.
  • Helped the growth engineering team overcome accumulated technical debt and transition to a development process with long-term sustainability.
  • Oversaw maintenance and continued development of an in-house, SHA-based experimentation platform that expanded the one experiment per one user format to multiple experiment planes per user throughout the signup funnel.
    • Achieved a 40% increase to experiment samples despite traffic growing only 10% year to year.
  • Implemented the “Linear Buyflow” platform, providing a data-driven state machine for customizable user signup experiences. This allowed feature pods to implement, move, and customize pages in the signup flow, targeting specific subsets of users based on demographics, traffic sources, history, and answers to survey questions.
  • Centralized user targeting logic into “segment functions.” This created one source of truth for feature presentation decisions and allowed for easy changes to targeted user groups.
  • Led “crowdsourced” initiative to convert codebase of 700 JavaScript and 131 global LESS files to fully typed Typescript and Emotion implementations. This was done without impacting experiment velocity or other topline business initiatives by utilizing PM downtime.
  • Collaboratively established best practices around engineering tasks, including typing, styling, division of business logic and presentation division, error handling, monitoring, and general site architecture.
  • Identified needs and built common functionality supporting 11 feature pods, including core UI controls and monitoring infrastructure.
  • Expanded testing and automation practices to include Jest, Cypress, and Storybook, improving velocity while providing a safety net during the large-scale rebuilds.
  • Served on growth engineering leadership team, mentoring team members from independent contributors to tech leads to rising engineering managers.
  • Implemented site speed improvements such as hash invalidated bundles, scheduled 3rd party library loaders, and path-centric code bundles, dropping largest contentful paint time by 33%.
  • Improved developer efficiency and experiment velocity by improving developer tooling locally and in CI/CD pipelines.

Senior Web Architect May 2020 - April 2021

  • Architected React and Typescript-based frontend platform to replace existing Citrix delivered applications.
  • Built Node, gRPC, and WebSocket data pipeline hitting target delivery and rendering budget of 100ms for live options market data tables.
  • Championed gRPC services for internal and customer usage, preventing hard coupling of new projects to the unversioned binary messaging systems requiring monolithic releases for all other services.
  • Designed a CI/CD pipeline to replace existing manual deployment processes utilizing Docker, Nomad, Consul, and Bamboo.
  • Rolled out centralized monitoring and alerting systems to help shift the team from specific services deployed on specific hosts/IPs to a DevOps-focused mentality.
  • Assisted IT staff with writing scripts and Nomad to deploy software, replacing existing highly manual deployment process.
  • Shifted authentication platform from Active Directory infrastructure to Auth0-based system, reducing the provisioning time for new users as well overhead for support desk around user management.
  • Helped developed the firm’s git branching strategy, moving the team away from coding and testing in the main branch and towards more sustainable development and testing practices.
Healthline Media

Director, Engineering, Consumer Sites November 2017 - May 2020 (Acquired by RedVentures)

  • Grew full stack remote team from 3 engineers to 12 total reports across two teams.
  • Built team culture of performance focus and accountability, through code reviews, standups, and frequent interaction with stakeholders.
  • Mentored team members, urging them to broaden their understanding of the problem space as well as to examine long term maintenance concerns of implemented features.
  • Fostered two way dialog between engineering and stakeholders to ensure that the optimal solution is reached.
  • Ensured site stability as traffic grew 450% during this time frame, becoming the largest health publisher on the web.
  • Oversaw transition from single tenant site to platform hosting,, and, combined serving over 1,200,000 pageviews an hour.
  • Served as primary owner of performance of the site. Engaged with all parts of the business to balance site performance concerns with other business drivers such as per page ad revenue.
  • Implemented and optimized mission critical portions of the product, including ad delivery pipeline as well as internal activation driver targeting and delivery platform.
  • Assisted other groups in vetting 3rd party offerings, ensuring that we don’t impact the performance or stability of the site.
  • Developed QA strategy, moving from nightly manual QA to fully automated test suite, immediately accessible to developers, with strong emphasis on visual and integration testing.
Healthline Media

Consulting Engineer April 2017 - November 2017

  • Mentored team on performance and scaling concerns in both client and server React environments
  • Extended the Next.js framework to support needs of high volume production environment
  • Designed runtime and deploy environment for rebuild under Node and React
  • Implemented application-level monitoring and alerting
  • Introduced the use of style regression testing
Citadel LLC

Senior Web Application Architect August 2016 - April 2017

  • Implemented services and React/Redux client data layer for firm-level visual Risk and Performance overview application, merging both live ticking and historical data sources into a single set of uniform APIs for visualization developers.
  • Developed mobile-focused services for order entry, blotter, and live market monitor for internal mobile application rewrite
  • Led transition of services tier from monolithic C# process to microservices infrastructure
  • Designed “hub” architecture to allow developers to easily test single services within larger ecosystem.
  • Implemented Node CI/CD system within Bamboo
  • Automated business JIRA workflow to avoid developer overhead and provide deployment gating based on business approval flows
  • Helped team transition from free-form JavaScript development to more structured process with linting, unit testing, and consistent repeatable deployments
  • Designed best practices for team’s technical logging and alerting using Datadog, Splunk, and Pagerduty
  • Spearheaded development of module ecosystem for Node and React developers covering numerous environment-specific concerns such as internal binary protocols, etc.
  • Acted as reviewer/mentor for developers transitioning from C# WPF environment to React/Hapi/Node technologies

Co-Founder August 2015 - August 2016

  • Many hats: Full stack architecture, coding, DevOps, and a touch of IA and product work on upcoming stealth product.
  • Developed ad-hoc group scheduling system, supporting recurrence across timezones
  • Primary engineer in two person team. Implemented 90%+ of product

Senior Web Architect May 2014 - April 2015

  • Implemented Isomorphic JavaScript support in Thorax
  • Deployed high availability SPA rendering pipeline that handled record holiday traffic (#nodebf 2014)
  • Developed production Node debugging practices for team
  • Designed Circus, next generation asset pipeline for large frontend applications
  • Setup transition plan for merging desktop and mobile sites into single responsive site
  • Consulted desktop teams on best practice in mobile and responsive development
  • Acted as engineering advocate between different disciplines

Mobile Web Architect April 2011 - May 2014

  • Led development of and rebuilds
  • Designed Thorax, modern Backbone-based Single Page Application stack
  • Developed team’s build, test, and release workflows
    • Open sourced resulting tools: generator-release, git-todo, mock-server, Lumbar
  • Moved team from release cadence of roughly quarterly to multiple times a week
  • Defined QA and production error handling and monitoring practices for the team
    • Open sourced Costanza library used to greatly improve collected error data
    • Reduced frontend error rate from 16% to 0.25% of users over holiday period
  • Implemented hybrid web checkout for iOS and Android clients
  • Served as chief client-crash test dummy for Hapi Framework
  • Co-developed configuration and AB tooling, including Confidence library
  • Maintained Handlebars.js project, including implementation of precompiler
  • Researched rendered page differencing automated tests (Carahue)
  • Designed Node-based, write once, server side SPA rendering system (Fruit Loops)
  • Debugged and resolved numerous Node.js production memory leaks
Set Direction

Senior Software Engineer February 2011 - April 2011 (Acquired by Walmart)

  • Created retail in-store mobile application prototype under Android
  • Built tiledroid, an android map widget supporting arbitrary tilesets and world dimensions
  • Developed HTML5 ebook reader application
  • Implemented Facebook comments UI and feeds on

Developer Relations Engineer (Acquired by HP) February 2010 - February 2011

  • Led development of Facebook for webOS through 5 major releases. Ranked highest Facebook smartphone client among smartphone platforms by users and called “Possibly the best Facebook app on the market” by Engadget.
  • Blogged on webOS and general web development topics
  • Open sourced 13+ JavaScript and Mojo libraries
  • Acted as internal advocate for developer issues
  • Developed and maintained developer utilities
  • Presented and provided technical support at Meetups and conferences
Xythos Software

Software Engineer (Acquired by Blackboard) June 2006 - February 2010

  • Designed Web 2.0 Loader and Module Framework
  • Updated Web 2.0 and legacy application for ADA compliance
  • Implemented CSS minifier, sprite generator, and resource aggregator to improve application performance
  • Implemented modular installer for dual-product installations
  • Designed database merge utility and resolved issues from different database structure
  • Customized OGNL library to resolve performance issue
  • Prototyped VM-based development environment
  • Performed Tier II support
  • Implemented custom Java fork library
  • Maintained build and installer routines
  • Designed upgrade test framework




2015 - 2018



2011 - 2016

Node Advisory Board


2014 - 2015

Firebug Working Group


2008 - 2014


University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

BS, Computer Science


Kevin Decker —