"The Valentine's Day Project Disaster strongly demonstrates that with the right tools and processes students are capable of far more than we expect of them. Project management, people management, and time management are all skills that can be learned and Gary Nelson teaches those skills through engaging characters, situations, and story lines. Young or old, The Valentine's Day Project Disaster is a fun way to learn how to bring an idea to life!" - Kris Beisel, Director - Educational Alliances, Destination Imagination, Inc.
"While everyone knows Project Managers should be professionally detached from their stakeholders, it can be really difficult when you are only 12 - and Valentine's Day is involved! The Project Kids face a big challenge in trying to balance delivering a project (Valentine dance), engaging and influencing their stakeholders (a whole school of students, teachers and the principal), and keeping a clear head...all while Cupid is circling above. Important lessons are given for children - and adults, too!" - Tony van Krieken, PMP, MA
"Gary's ability to explain projects, project management and key concepts in an easy to understand and interesting way is just amazing. He has figured out the formula to teach crucial life skills to young adults and have them eagerly participate. Soon we will all be asking "What would the project kids do?" - Stephen Nosal, President Elect, Project Management Institute New York City Chapter
About the Author
Born in Calgary, Alberta (Canada), Gary moved west to B.C. at the very early age of 2, where he spent most of his formative years - aside from a 6 year stint where he learned to appreciate living in a very small town of 800 people. He then attended high school in Surrey, B.C. and went on to graduate from Simon Fraser University (BC, Canada) in 1989 with a major in Computing science and a minor in English - an odd but useful mix (a techie who can write clearly)!
Gary was tricked into becoming a Project Manager by his first manager, and has never looked back. His international experience includes projects in New Zealand, Taiwan, Hong Kong, the US and Canada, working on projects in the Telecom, Student Information Systems, Local Government and Healthcare sectors.
Having wanted to write books since high school, it took many long years of successful procrastination until he finally felt he had something useful to write about, and wrote his first book of stories in 2012...on Project Management, of all things. Next, presented with the terrifying challenge of writing for children, he enlisted his youngest sons to be the first victims (reviewers and editors) and the Project Kids series of books were born. Several years on, he is amazed to see the books being translated into multiple languages, and reaching into schools and homes around the world.
Gary currently lives in New Zealand with his wife, three sons and two cats, and is loving every bit of it.