Life’s Changes – Who, me?

Well – as of this past Monday (03 May 2010), I officially ended my career at Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne; a career that began shortly before my 40th birthday and continued for 21 of the past 23 years. I had a half-hour exit interview with my boss, the Director of the Program Management Office, part of which involved my turning in my laptop, my SecureID token, and by BlackBerry. I then walked around and said some good-byes, after which I returned to my boss’s office, handed over my badge, and was escorted to the front lobby. When I walked out of that door, knowing I could not walk onto the campus again without seeking special permission, it was a very emotional moment. There was the exhilaration of knowing I was now headed into another life adventure, and there was the sadness of leaving behind so many people I’d grown close to and a life that provided both challenge and a semblance of security for over twenty years. I had to fight back tears for a moment.

I now somewhat officially start the next chapter of my life, though I’m really going to try and take a little time to be with my family, play and study with my girls, help my wife around the house some, and generally enjoy a little bit of leisure – something I’ve not had a lot of for some time. Time to wind down a bit. Soon enough I’ll have to do some heavy lifting. I can feel it!

About Rick Ladd

Since my retirement from Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne in 2010, I have spent quite a bit of energy on developing work as a social media marketer for small business, a business manager for an AI software development firm, and as an editor/proofreader for a number of business books and a couple of novels, as well as a two-year return engagement at Rocketdyne from 2015 to 2017. I have decided to stop actively pursuing business in these fields and am now positioning myself to be a writer. I have done quite a bit of writing over the years, but I’ve never really attempted to make any money at it; at least not specifically. I’m starting out with a couple of memoirs and, currently, I’m studying the craft, creating a detailed outline and timeline, and honing my skills as a storyteller. Pretty sure I’ll be writing some fiction as well. View all posts by Rick Ladd

4 responses to “Life’s Changes – Who, me?

  • Anil


    Best wishes for life after P&W. Enjoyed working with you during the early days of AskMe implementation – was real fun. Looks like you are continuing your passion and crusade on KM and Web 2.0 :-).

    • Rick Ladd

      Hello Anil:

      How nice to see you here. Yes, my passion hasn’t diminished in the least. What’s really changing, I believe, is I think I’ll have a better chance of seeing more done than in the past as I’ll have the choice of working with people and organizations that are actually seeking – not resisting – change.

      I trust all is well with you and your family. I’ll bet you got here through LinkedIn. Perhaps we’ll find a way to work together in the future. I surely hope so. BTW – It’s been right around 8 years since that first implementation and I maintain now that it was one of the first for social media – though we didn’t call it that (don’t think we even quite understood it, as “expertise location” was the mantra back then) at the time.

  • Lisa


    I just wanted to wish you well on this new journey. I have no doubt you will recreate your life to fit all of your unique and timely interests! Now go spend some time helping out your wife!

    • Rick Ladd

      Thanks, Lisa. I truly am excited about the possibilities ahead of me. Hopefully, some of them will actually bring income as well! So . . . How’d I do? Was I helpful enough? Probably not. It’s never enough IME (in my experience). 🙂

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