By Louise Herbert, DMBA Executive Director
MILFORD, CT - Tucked away on the corner of High Street and West Main Street is a beautiful historic home filled with sentimental mementos of the past. This is where you will find Humanitects, Inc., a website development firm that designs and develops intuitive, user centered web solutions. Jamie Rude founded the company after 9/11 out of his desire to help people in a significant way and be of service to his community. Humanitects serves businesses both large and small, is socially motivated and specializes in helping the non-profit, health and human service sectors.
“From an early age my parents instilled in me a deep sense of compassion and giving back,” Jamie explained. So, at age 14, he began his “service career” at Saint Joseph's Hospital in Stamford. The hospital had lots of Candy Stripers back then, but they were not quite sure what to do with their first “boy volunteer.” So they gave him a lab coat and put him to work in the Emergency Room transporting patients for x-rays and lab work and helping the doctors and nurses with supplies, etc. It was during this time that Jamie found his true calling to be of service and discovered his love of helping people.
Starting his studies at Norwalk Community College, Jamie went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in biology and computer science from Boston University. After college Jamie moved back to Connecticut to join a fledgling software company. Jamie managed the custom software consulting team, building many financial systems, but also a number of clinical grant tracking, employee assistance, and human resources applications.
Joining the company when it was still run from the founder's home, Jamie helped Hyperion Solutions grow into a multi-million dollar public company. “But, despite its rapid growth, Hyperion always remained a people-centered company. Our clients and fellow employees came first,” he told me.
In 1989 Jamie discovered Milford through his now spouse, Walter. At the time Jamie didn't know anything about Milford except for what he had seen from I-95. Walter introduced Jamie to Milford, showing him the green, the quaint downtown center, and the surrounding historic homes. They rented a cottage on Prospect Street for a few years and then bought their home in 1993 where they still reside with their canine kids, Prince William and Lady Margot.
After the September 11th attacks in New York, Jamie went through a period of discernment and decided to leave Hyperion after nearly 20 years, and found Humanitects. He wanted to work directly with people and help non-profits and small businesses grow through website development. Jamie brought decades of software development experience to the table along with his passion to serve.
Within a year he was able to hire a full-time client services director, Gary, who still works for Humanitects nine years later. “Hyperion taught me that service is the key to a successful software business, without it, technology is for naught,” Jamie said.
He believes that he is now doing exactly what he was born to do. “I feel blessed that we can work with organizations that are impacting lives in meaningful ways,” he said. He particularly enjoys working with non-profits because the websites he builds help bring awareness and support to important issues and he feels that Humanitects is part of the solution. “Like our tagline says, we build web solutions with humanity in site,” he added with a smile.
But, Jamie loves all the businesses he and Gary work with. As part of his desire to give back Humanitects distributes grants to their non-profit clients by utilizing a portion of their for-profit client proceeds. “It’s our way of paying it forward,” he said.
When the Milford Chamber of Commerce celebrated their 50th anniversary, Humanitects granted a website to the Beth El Shelter. This year, Humanitects is celebrating their 10th anniversary and is paying it forward by granting the Downtown Milford Business Association a new website, www.downtownmilfordct.org. It is definitely worth taking a look at the site to understand Jamie’s sense of community and his passion for downtown.
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