Tech mission: TotalCare founder 'in tune with nonprofits'

Press, Company Updates

March 5, 2009 - The Commercial Appeal by James Dowd

Clients are clear when they describe Patrick Tamburrino: He's not a stereotypical I.T. kind of guy.

Which is to say that the TotalCare Technologies founder -- a self-professed computer nerd -- may think in code, but he doesn't communicate in it.

Jim Boyd, president of BRIDGES, put it simply. "Patrick doesn't speak geek. He talks in a language I can understand," Boyd said. "He reconfigured our technology, and he did it in a knowledgeable and approachable way. We didn't realize how vulnerable our system was until Patrick showed us how to make it better, and now we're much more efficient than before."

Sherry Crane, director of administration for BRIDGES, agreed. "Patrick moved us into the 21st century; he brought us up to speed," Crane said. "He's in tune with nonprofits and he buys into our mission. This is almost a way of his giving back to the community."

For Tamburrino, a Joplin, Mo., native who launched his Memphis company in 2008, that characterization wears well. The 33-year-old spent nearly a dozen years as a corporate information technology specialist, starting off as a computer technician and eventually overseeing national telecommunications operations and managing annual I.T. budgets that exceeded $4 million.

Despite his career's upward trajectory, however, Tamburrino wasn't completely satisfied.

"At the corporate level I gained a great deal of progressive experience, but something was missing," Tamburrino said. "The higher up I got, the further away I got from direct contact with customers, and I missed being able to help people and interact with them on a one-on-one basis."

Finally, after plenty of soul searching and more than a few sleepless nights, Tamburrino left corporate life behind. Combining his I.T. experience and a passion for nonprofit groups, he formed his own company.

A year later, Tamburrino's dedication to mission-oriented organizations is paying off. Despite a struggling economy, TotalCare Technologies continues to grow. "It may be hard for some I.T. specialists to relate to mission-oriented organizations, but I had a nonprofit focus in mind when I started my business," Tamburrino said. "Most nonprofits can't afford a big I.T. staff, and that's where my company comes in. I'm able to offer support services that marry their mission initiatives with updated I.T. strategies."

The company counts more than 75 clients and offers services that include integration and customization of software, mobile services, Web site design and electronic newsletters.

Tamburrino has also developed policies and procedures documents for a number of customers and established data maintenance and recovery programs.

For some companies, outsourcing I.T. departments boosts the bottom line.

"In today's economy, it's constructive for small businesses to be as resourceful as possible in finding ways to better reach their target audiences," said Cary Rotter of Comfort Keepers. "By using TotalCare Technologies, I can deal with I.T. issues on an as-needed basis."

Russ Williams, CEO and principal at archer%3emalmo, agreed. "We've downsized our I.T. operations and needed guidance, and Patrick offers that as our virtual chief technology officer," Williams said. "It allows us to maintain high quality applications at a reasonable cost without compromising on leadership."