Meet Fred: HTA’s Brewmaster and IT Guru

Meet Fred. Around the office, some call him the “Mac Guy” while others call him Master Brewer. Whether it’s IT or an IPA, Fred doesn’t just want to answer your questions or resolve HTA - Fredyour issues, he wants to educate you. He’s been with HTA for nearly 2 years, but has been in IT for nearly 16 years (sorry if that’s dating you, Fred, but it’s meant to be a compliment). In other words, Fred is smart and he has a solution to just about every IT issue. What keeps him in the IT industry? He loves to “learn cool new things” and figure out how they work. Fred’s calm demeanor is amicable and contagious. In case you don’t have the fortunate opportunity to meet him, learn a little more about him here…

My proudest accomplishments…

There is a lot to be grateful for! Buying a house with and marrying the woman of my dreams are definitely some of my proudest accomplishments. Graduating from UMBC, is definitely up there too!

Even though I haven’t gone in a while, I’d like to …

Go skiing. I used to go all the time but haven’t in a while. Actually, I ended up selling my skis but they were pretty outdated. I am sure there are much smaller, sleeker skis now. Recently, my wife wanted to go snow tubing. I have never been. I think that if I were on a mountain with snow, that close to skiing, I would have to do it. Maybe we should just go tubing and skiing – if we ever get snow again in Maryland.

 I like to make…

Beer. I started brewing in 2004 or 2005 in my basement. Right now I am working on a batch that’s very similar to Julius, an American IPA from a Boston brewery, Tree House Brewing. It’s actually one of my favorites, very similar to The Alchemist’s Heady Topper.* Heady Topper is definitely one of my favorites, although it’s impossible to find outside of Vermont. One of my staples is Dogfish Head’s 60-minute. But there are so many options, so most of the time I can’t help picking up something new. There are so many craft breweries popping up. One of my local favorites is from Jailbreak (which is right down the street from HTA) is The Infinite, an Amber Ale. People have told me I should really start naming my beer. The first batch I made, “KendAle,” I named after my brother’s daughter, Kendyl. Of course, he has been encouraging me to name a batch after his son, Oliver. If I do, it will either be “Ollie” or “Oliver IPA.” Then I’ll have many more batches to make to name after my 7 other nieces and nephews.

*Note: At this point, Fred taught me the difference between hops and yeast. While I had heard about Heady Topper, I had no idea how much of a legendary beer it really is. That’s what I’m talking about, Fred really wanted me to understand.

I wish my cat…

Wouldn’t be so afraid of me. We have two cats – Lily and Lucy. Lily is more of an adventurous cat. Every now and then she’ll sneak out of the house. She’s curious, friendly, and likes to cuddle up with my wife and I. Lucy on the other hand is terrified of me and anyone else besides my wife. Lucy was born on a farm. I had to take her to the vet once and had a tough time getting her in the carrying case. She fought going in and ended up falling. She scratched my face and hid in the basement. I had to dig her out of our storage closet. The vet experience wasn’t all that pleasant either. Ever since then she has steered clear of me. Well, and everyone else. She’s just timid.

A gadget I could not live without…

is my Pebble watch. They actually don’t make them anymore so it’s even more of a treasure to me since it’s so rare. It’s a lot like the Apple Watch but less expensive. It has all of the features that I use without the other bells and whistles that I wouldn’t use. The notifications are key for me.

Three of the most important things on my desk …

I have a picture of my wife and me at our wedding. We had actually known each other a long time. We used to go to church together when we were kids. After years of trying to set us up on a date, we both obliged and it ended up being the best date ever. There is a tea pot for my afternoon caffeine buzz. My favorite tea is Yunnan Jig, Chinese black tea from the Yunnan province. I also have my Star Wars ships on my desk.

One survival technique I wish I had…

I wish I could start a fire without matches.

(Bonus: Here are 9 ways to start a fire without matches.)

Someone who inspires me…

Is my 89-year old Grandfather.  Although he is officially “retired,” he still gets up every day and goes to work. But before he gets to work, he stops on the side of the road on his way to pick up any trash. Even at almost 90 years old, he is motivated to work and help the environment. Having lived through the Depression, he saves everything. I mean, everything. He saves the red Solo cups and will rinse them out to reuse them. When I visit him I make sure to wash them with soap before I use them again. (Laughs) I appreciate his appreciation for things, no matter how simple they may be.

About The Author

Michelle Pelszynski

Michelle Pelszynski

Born and raised in Howard County, Michelle is an upbeat wordsmith, with a passion for giving back to her community. She enjoys live music - from bluegrass to hip hop, having fun with her husband and daughter, traveling, running, practicing yoga, reading, and baking. She also has the pleasure of coaching a group of amazing young ladies in the Heart & Sole and Girls On the Run after school program.


This entry was posted on Monday, March 20th, 2017 at 4:03 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.