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About 1 Happy Place

Portrait of Katie Ayres, WordPress developer and owner of 1 Happy Place, LLC

Hello! My name is Katie Ayres, and experienced full-stack WordPress Developer and the owner of 1 Happy Place LLC.

I have been a software engineer since 1987 when I graduated cum laude and received my Computer Science degree from California State University, East Bay in the San Francisco Bay Area where I was born and raised.

I was a Senior Software Engineer and Technical Manager for twenty years, first working for GTE Government Systems, and then General Dynamics after it acquired GTE. I built software for signal processing systems, writing the real-time equipment control software.

I loved my work, won awards at the company, and worked on amazing systems that help defend our country. But after 20 years, I was at a decision point in my career.

I had left my much-loved job to become a caretaker, and when it was time to return to the workplace, it would have been natural to return to my old position at General Dynamics.

But after an experience volunteering for my community, I started to see how I could take the depth of my skills and make a difference in areas where there were not engineers like me.

I had volunteered to update a website for a community of two thousand homes, where I lived. It then won Community Website of the Year for the DC metro area, and I was asked to talk at a conference of community managers. I was hooked on making a difference in the non-technical world.

One of my strengths in my old job was making technical presentations to customers. I had a knack for talking about large and complicated software systems in a way that anyone could understand. I knew I could use those same skills to not only help people build their online presence, but also help them feel more confident in navigating the technology world.

I created 1 Happy Place LLC, to build and maintain professional websitesMy clients would feel empowered by technology, and their online presence would become their happy place, instead of a dreary and intimidating part of their business.

We were at a dinner party and a friend said ‘your website Wendy is excellent’.  So kudos to you Katie!

— Wendy Roseberry

Websites are a projection of your business into the online space. When you look at my portfolio, you will see each website clearly communicates the personality of the businesses. When the online space “feels” like the real one, your potential clients can move seamlessly between the two worlds.

I love engineering and enjoy participating as a contributor to the WordPress project. It is exciting to volunteer my time and be a part of a massive piece of software (347,000 lines of code!) that runs 43% of the 1.1 billion websites worldwide.

Profile for Katie at Stack Overflow, Q&A for professional and enthusiast programmers

participate in Stack Overflow, a large online website with 14 million registered users, where professional software developers help people with their code. I generally rank in the top 20% even when I am busy with work, as some of my answers continue to help other engineers.

I have created a video library with fun, non-technical videos to help website owners feel comfortable in this ever-changing technical world into which all of us were unceremoniously shoved.

Thank you for the very clear instructions. You’re so organized and easy to work with.

— Meredith Moss

I am officially certified in MailChimp allowing me to provide services to help with the technical and design aspect of your newsletters.

I earned the Certificate in the World Art History Program from the Smithsonian Associates during 2020 – 2021 (shown below). I took twelve fascinating seminars that taught me about Art and Architecture around the world and continue to take seminars.

Take a look at my portfolio and pricing, and contact me to chat further on how I can help you.

My Skills

As a software engineer:

  • Website Development
    • WordPress custom themes
    • WordPress plug-ins
  • Software Languages
    • PHP
    • Javascript
    • React
    • SQL
  • Software Markup Languages
    • HTML
    • SASS
    • CSS
  • Tools
    • Vagrant
    • MySQL
    • Apache
  • Server Administration
    • Ubuntu Linux
    • SSH
    • HTTP Protocols

As a Designer:

  • Design
    • Typography
    • Color Theory
    • Layout
  • Tools
    • Adobe XD Prototype
    • Adobe Photoshop
    • Adobe Illustrator
    • Adobe InDesign

In case you are interested, I have worked professionally in the following software languages over the years: C, C++, Java, and even Ada!