My name is Ryan Kimbrell. I mentioned in the initial information about me on the side my zest for life. I want to give you a little background into who I am and what I am all about. I am a 35 year old single person living in Kansas City, Missouri. I am all about enjoying every day to the fullest. I want to give everyone a background as to who and what made me the person that I am today.
In a brief introduction, my family is very important to me, my brother Justin, my mother Carolyn and I are an extremely tight family. We were dealt a tough blow early in life, my father passed away when I was seven and my brother was three, this proved to be a difficult situation, but made me an extremely strong person. People can react in different ways, but this made both my brother and I very mentally tough, this is what made us so tight as a family. We did not let this affect us negatively in any capacity, we participated in all the same activities, we took the same vacations that other families took, we learned that we would be the most important people for each other. This is where I developed my love of sports. My brother and I were extremely competitive children, we always tried to outdo each other. Knowing this is what made my first adventure listed below a true challenge.
My first true adventure in life was in 1992, I was a 17 year old kid who decided that I wanted to live abroad as an exchange student for a year. I left my school friends and my family and moved to Nara, Japan. I lived with a host family and attended a Japanese High School for one year. This was an incredible experience. I was engulfed 100% in the culture of Japan. I made many friends, I learned to speak Japanese, I basically became a part of a new family. The experience was very special to me, I was allowed to travel to all the major sites and see some very profain things. I spent a day at Hiroshima and went to the park where the atomic bomb was dropped and this is truly mind boggling. This was a difficult decision to leave all my friends and move to a new country, but this was a big part in what made me who I am. This instilled a sense of responsibility and the ability to realize that anything would be possible in my life.
Upon returning from Japan, I moved on to the next important phase in my life college. I attended Drury University in Springfield, Missouri. At Drury I joined a fraternity which made life interesting. I developed great new friends and a sense of brotherhood. The friends I made are still some of my closest friends to this day. While at Drury I picked up a Bachelor of Arts with majors in Business Administration and Economics. I am very proud to say that I finished on the standard four year track. My brother was a freshmen my senior year at Drury, he attended Drury as well and joined the same fraternity which made this a special year in my life.
The past 11 years of my life have been in the working world. My career started at UMB Bank, I began as Manager Trainee in the wire room. This was a great learning experience for me, all my previous jobs were manual labor jobs so I had no understanding of an office environment. This experience was also a positive in the fact that my boss left and took a position at US Central Credit Union, six months later she had a position open up and remembered me from UMB. I received a call, interviewed and began my new career at US Central. The first seven years I spent in an operations environment; I learned the core products of US Central from the inside out. An opportunity came my way, I took a job as a Support Analyst in the Member Assistance Center. This was the Help Desk of US Central. With the knowledge gained working in the operation area I was able to excel in this environment. I earned a promotion to Lead Analyst which meant that all tough calls would come my way. This also brought on new responsibilities which I really enjoy. Because of the great knowledge I have, the company now uses me as a primary tester on new applications. I do all user acceptance testing on the new core processing system we are about to put in. I am looking forward to where the future leads me after picking up my degree at BU.
You have learned what made me the person I am, and what I currently do now I want to share a little about what I enjoy doing in my free time. From my younger years I learned to love sports, I compete in a USTA tennis league which I truly love. I am a die hard fan of the Missouri Tigers, Kansas City Chiefs and Kansas City Royals. I mentioned in my personal information that I have run 4 half marathons, this is something I am extremely proud of. I wish I could say I did this because I truly enjoyed running but that is not the case, I do this to stay healthy. In the past 5 years I have lost 120 pounds and this can mostly be attributed to my active lifestyle. The last thing which I truly love is traveling. In the pictures on this blog you see me in several different cities Las Vegas, Ft. Collins and Boston. These were just three of the trips I took last year. I look forward to working with everyone and learning more about each of you in this class.