Introducing: Pat McGrew of InfoTrends
Bringing Workflow Passion to Power
With 35 years of industry experience, Pat McGrew recently returned to the InfoTrends family, this time as Director of Production Workflow Services. A native of the Philadelphia area, she’s now based in Aurora, Colorado. From her home office, which sits on more than a couple of acres and affords her a beautiful view of the mountains, she gave us a very open look at who she is and what makes her go.
Pat McGrew (second from left) was recognized by her peers in 2014 when she claimed the Girls Who Print "Girlie" award (also pictured, from left to right: Deborah Corn, Cary Sherburne, Chris Echevarria and Beth Smith
The Journey Back to InfoTrends
Pat McGrew’s professional career began with TV news in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her road only got more interesting from there, with stops at both car and music magazines, a contract archaeology company and an accounting software company (where she was a technical writer). She next landed at Mobil Oil as a Documentation Specialist (in disaster and contingency planning) and then at Image Sciences, which is now a part of Oracle. Over the course of five years at Image, she learned about not only print in the insurance industry but also variable data printing, file formats, and AI processes for document assembly.
Always a curious soul, McGrew took this expertise and interest in all things related to documents in enterprise environments and fulfilled a request to write a book on mainframe-based composition for Macmillan Publishing. After convincing a colleague to help on that project, they went on to write many more books together and co-founded GenText, the first industry provider of print stream transformation software. Over the next decade, their team developed code that became part of the infrastructure for both enterprise workflows and OEM market offerings.
McGrew started her first tour of duty at InfoTrends in 1998, providing transactional and communication insight to the company’s clients. In 2003, however, she saw a chance to further expand her horizons and joined Pitney Bowes Management Services as Director of Document Strategy. It was here that she met another InfoTrends employee, Ron Gilboa, who she then followed to Kodak to help prepare the market for the oncoming inkjet revolution and work with global customers to prepare their teams and systems for high-speed color inkjet capabilities. In 2011, she moved over to HP to assist in growing customer page volumes for its family of high-speed inkjet presses, and she led the initiative to run the on-floor print shop during drupa 2016—in 11 days there, McGrew dealt with over 250 rolls of paper!
Life at InfoTrends
Interfacing with customers around the world for the previous 13 years was certainly great on many levels, but research and development are things that truly excite her. So, after drupa, McGrew jumped at the chance to bring her expertise back to InfoTrends. “Working with the Production & Media Group, my goal is to build out workflow service opportunities, expand our forecasts, and bring the best insights into the growing number of architectures that form the infrastructure of our coverage areas,” McGrew said.
Her favorite part about coming full circle is that she returns with an incredible amount of experience, particularly with workflows that drive the packaging and textile markets. “There’s nothing more awesome than looking at how our clients and their constituents can benefit from learnings and best practices,” she said.
Outside of InfoTrends
Admittedly, McGrew has a very hard time separating work from the rest of her life. However, a change she made three years ago has increased the need for balance. “My son Jonathan, his husband Brandon, and I decided to sell our individual homes and buy a property that could accommodate all of us,” she said. “Along with my ex-husband, we’re all very passionate about cars and have a growing fleet, so it became apparent that we needed a place that had indoor parking—this is Colorado after all, where the weather can be inhospitable at times.
“The boys found an ideal place for our family,” McGrew continued. “It had been empty for three years but included an apartment for my ex, a more-than-spacious main house, a garage that could fit 10 cars, and a bonus two-room office building that has a mechanics garage.” There’s also a garage for the lawn equipment and, while they don’t have any chickens, a chicken coop.
McGrew said that the house is constantly being renovated, and of course her and the family spend plenty of time working on the cars, which includes her 1967 Mustang 286 Coupe, a 1976 MG B Roadster, a 1956 Cadillac Series 65, a 1972 El Dorado Convertible, some Cadillacs and Lincolns from the ’80s and ’90s, a RAM Diesel pickup, a 1984 Chevy Van (“don’t ask”), a car trailer and a Dodge Charger. “At least as of today, because these things change almost on a daily basis,” she said.
“We have two Huskies, two dachshunds, and a Bernedoodle, too,” McGrew said. “We’re a bit of an odd family, but there’s always a lot of activity and we have a lot of fun!”