From Indianapolis to L.A. to NYC to Austin and Back Again
Ed Rice has lived in Los Angeles, New York City, and Austin, but has now made the move back to Indiana. This is the home of his alma maters: Cathedral High School, Ball State and IU, and he’s working as a product designer and strategist for Angie’s List. His friends are all asking why; he says it’s the feeling!
Ed graduated from Ball State then moved to L.A. to pursue a career in acting. He had many different day jobs throughout his time in L.A., including a librarian position at a local private school. Ed ended up really enjoying his work at the library and began to realize that he might like to make a career out of it. He began to research Library Science degrees and decided to enroll in some graduate level Human Computer Interactions courses from IUPUI.
When asked if he ever thought that he would go into anything computer science or tech-related growing up. He said he really didn’t, but recalled a car trip in the late 80’s that could have been a foreshadowing. He said that he told his brother, “One day I‘ll have a car with a computer screen, that controls everything in the car.” His family laughed.
Ed began his career at Smallbox here in town, but soon left to pursue a masters degree at IU-Bloomington. He then took off to New York to work for The Barbarian Group and R/GA, both digital agencies, where he worked for clients like Makerbot, GE, Nike, Google and Samsung.
In New York, Ed and his wife Hillary, a commercial advertising producer, had their first child and started looking for a slower paced city to raise a family. He moved to Austin to work as a Design Lead at IBM Design. Shortly after he moved to Austin, Indianapolis-based Angie’s List began conversations with Ed about wanting him on board. He accepted the role and started in May.
“The opportunity with Angie’s List was too good to pass up. The company is poised to revolutionize the services industry and is competing with Google and Amazon.”
He said no for a while, because Austin seemed to have too many opportunities. He told Angie’s List to call him in 6 months and they sure did. After thinking it over and discussing it for a while, Ed decided that moving back home was best for his family. He had always kept an eye on Angie’s List with the thought that it would be an amazing company to work for. He not only really liked the idea of working for them, but he loved the idea of his kids being near family in Indianapolis.
Ed feels like he can make more of a difference in Indy than he could in other big cities. He says it is much easier to make a name for yourself here and says he wants to find ways give back to Indianapolis and be a larger part of the growing tech community.
Ed, his wife and daughter live in Windsor Park, just a mile off Mass Avenue, and he loves being able to bike to work. Ed acknowledges that Indy does not have all of the visible special features that cities like L.A., Austin, and New York do. There are no mountains, beaches, natural swimming pools, or Central Park, and it doesn’t quite have the music scene or river like Austin. He says that what Indy has over these cities is “more of a feeling. It’s hard to describe. You could say it is ‘the easy life.’”
Ed said explaining to his friends why he would want to leave these big cities to come to Indianapolis made him want to create a website called, “Why Indy?” where everyone could verbalize what they love about our city. Ed is passionate about making an impact in Indy and bringing some of the things he loved about New York and Austin to Indianapolis and we are excited to see the great things he does!
We are so happy to have you back, Ed! Welcome home!