Professional Development Reading List

A Selection of Reading or Online Content that Influenced My Thinking and Moved Me to Action

Last updated January 31, 2021


T-Minus AI: Humanity’s Countdown to Artificial Intelligence and the New Pursuit of Global Power

by Michael Kanaan

This is a very insightful book.  Michael Kanaan glued several disaggregated pieces of AI history into one narrative.  This alone is of sufficient value to stand alone as a single piece of writing. He did not stop there though….the points the author made in the section on geopolitical concerns are salient for the times.  Definitely relevant and value added.  I highly recommend reading this book!


Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers

by Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pegneur

The Mom Test

by Rob Fitzpatrick

“How to talk to customers and learn if your business is a good idea when everyone is lying to you.”

Testing Business Ideas

by David J. Bland & Alex Osterwalder


A More Beautiful Question

by Warren Berger

“The power of inquiry to spark breakthrough ideas.” As a person who likes to talk, I aspire to ask more questions.  This book helped me to ask more questions.


by Tina Seelig

“A crash course on creativity.”

Ten Types of Innovation

by Larry Keeley, Ryan Pikkel, Brian Quinn, and Helen Walters

“The discipline of building breakthroughs”


Building Secure & Reliable Systems

by Heather Adkins, Betsy Beyer, Paul Blankinship, Piotr Lewandowski, Ana Oprea, & Adam Stubblefield

“Best Practices for Designing, Implementing & Maintaining Systems

Data Science on the Google Cloud Platform

by Valliappa Lakshmanan

“Implementing Real-time Data Pipelines: From Ingest to Machine Learning”

Google BigQuery The Definitive Guide

by Valliappa Lakshamanan & Jordan Tigani

“Data Warehousing, Analytics, and Machine Learning at Scale”

Site Reliability Engineering

Edited by Betsy Beyer, Chris Jones, Jennifer petoff & Niall Richard Murphy

“How Google runs production systems”


Crucial Conversations

by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler

Data Story

by Nancy Duarte

“Explain data and inspire action through story”


by Nancy Duarte & Patti Sanchez

“Ignite Change Through Speeches, Stories, Ceremonies, and Symbols.” The authors reveal to readers the “formula” or pattern many leaders use to achieve change.

Negotiating the Impossible

by Deepak Malhotra

“How to break deadlocks and resolve ugly conflicts (without money or muscle).”


by Nancy Duarte

“Present visual stories that transform audiences.” This book transformed my presentation style and sent me on a journey to better understand how to move people to action through story.


by Nancy Duarte

“The art and science of creating great presentations.” An actionable book illustrating the best ways to visually present to audiences. 


The Bible


God’s Wisdom for Navigating Life: A Year of Daily Devotions in the Book of Proverbs

by Timothy Keller and Kathy Keller

This devotional exceeds the standards, in my opinion. The daily devotions are in the Book of Proverbs and are focused on expounding God’s Word and sharing the truth of scripture.


Data Science from Scratch: First Principles with Python

by Joel Grus

Python Data Science Handbook

by Jake VanderPlas

“Essential tools for working with data”

Teaching and Learning STEM: A Practical Guide

by Richard M. Felder & Rebecca Brent


General of the Army: George C. Marshall, Soldier and Statesman

by Ed Cray

The Pinball Effect

by James Burke

“How renaissance water gardens made the carburetor possible.”


Build an A Team

by Whitney Johnson

The Coaching Habit

by Michael Bungay Stanier

“Say less, ask more & and change the way you lead forever.”

On Leadership

by John Wooden and Steve Jamison

I think this book had the most impact on my leadership style during command of 16th Weather Squadron.  The book inspired me to articulate my #1 command objective as field a high performing team

Lead Inside the Box

by Victor Prince and Mike Figliuolo

Principles: Life and Work

by Ray Dalio

Team Topologies 

by Matthew Skelton & Matthew Pais

“Organizing business & technology teams for fast flow”


Accelerate: The Science of Lean Software and DevOps: Building and Scaling High Performing Technology Organizations

by  Nicole Forsgren PhD , Jez Humble , et al.

The DevOps Handbook

by Gene Kim, Jez Humble, Patrick Debois, and John Willis

The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win

by Gene Kim , Kevin Behr , et al.


Human + Machine

by Paul R. Daugherty & H. James Wilson

“Reimagining work in the age of AI.”  This book presents the premise that human versus AI is a false dichotomy.  There exists a middle ground where humans complement machines and AI gives humans superpowers.

Modern Monopolies

by Alex Moazed & Nicholas L. Johnson

“What it takes to dominate the 21st-Century Economy.”

Platform Revolution

by Geoffrey G. Parker, Marshall W. Van Alstyne, & Sangeet Paul Choudary

“How networked markets are transforming the economy and how to make them work for you.”