Ryan Felton, Full-stack Developer in Kansas City, United States
Ryan Felton

Full-stack Developer in Kansas City, United States

Member since October 7, 2015
Ryan Felton is Facebook Innovation Award winning executive, highly technical software developer, a veteran, MBA graduate, and a passionate software entrepreneur recognized as one of the top 3% of freelance developers worldwide.
Ryan is now available for hire




Kansas City, United States



Preferred Environment

RSpec, Ruby, GitHub, MacOS

The most amazing...

...thing I've done is help build technologies under three different companies leading to tremendously successfully exits.


  • CTO

    2017 - 2019
    Pulse Platform, LLC
    • Led a team of globally distributed remote front-end, iOS, Android, and API software developers, QA teams, UI and UX designers, and product managers to build a multiple award-winning mobile and web platform connecting doctors and patients through a secure HIPAA compliant web and mobile platform engaging post surgical patients.
    • Inherited a team that was using older technologies, couldn't achieve scale, and had not adopted standard agile software development practices.
    • Led both the team's technical adoption of upgrading to the latest version of Angular.
    • Added monitoring, crash monitoring, and performance optimizations to the back-end Ruby on Rails API as well as implemented 100% unit test coverage as well as end-to-end test coverage using Capybara and RSpec.
    • Re-architected the data model within PostgreSQL to optimize logical data storage and utilized foreign key constraints to ensure data integrity.
    • Added Redis as a data store and caching layer and Sidekiq Pro for asynchronous multithreaded background workers to send emails, push notifications, and generate PDF reporting.
    Technologies: Sidekiq, Redis, PostgreSQL, WordPress, Kotlin, Android, Swift, iOS, Angular, Ruby on Rails (RoR)
  • Lead Developer

    2016 - 2016
    Checkmate, Inc.
    • Led a team of developers from concept to successful launch of the Checkmate iOS app and Ruby on Rails back-end application.
    • Mentored the team and built out a secure and scalable solution that seamlessly allowed the iOS app to interact directly with the restaurant's point-of-sale platform, the Stripe API for payment processing, and the Facebook and Twitter API for social sharing.
    Technologies: Point of Sale, Twitter API, Facebook API, Stripe API, PostgreSQL, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby
  • CTO

    2015 - 2015
    Penrose Senior Care Auditors
    • Leveraged my talents as not only as senior developer but also helped to clearly understand the founders' vision for their product and translate that into a beautiful application. Together, we clearly defined the MVP, laid out expectations, and got to work, ultimately delivering an amazing mobile-friendly MVP.
    • Built a Ruby on Rails web application and implemented Stripe's credit card payment processor to charge the client monthly for use of the service.
    • Built a mobile-friendly web app and PhoneGap native iOS app so that auditors can perform their audits while on site, providing instant feedback to their clients on the wellness of their loved one.
    • Implemented extensive integration tests that allowed me to implement continuous delivery so that bugs could be identified, fixed, and automatically deployed in only minutes.
    • Set up a Heroku pipeline for rapid QA, story acceptance, and production deployments.
    • Won AARP's [email protected]+ LivePitch for the Penrose Senior Care Auditors platform on April 27 2016.
    Technologies: PostgreSQL, RSpec, Stripe, jQuery, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby
  • CTO

    2014 - 2015
    • Upgraded multiple web applications in their SOA from Rails 3 to Rails 4.
    • Spearheaded the transformation of deployment for our web applications to continuous delivery for all apps in our SOA utilizing Rspec, Capybara, Factory Girl via third-party integrations with GitHub, TravisCI, CodeClimate, and Engine Yard.
    • Implemented stunning interactive big data visualizations utilizing d3.js.
    • Built and launched our iOS and Andriod smartphone applications implemented via PhoneGap framework.
    • Implemented multiple API-based integrations with third-party products such as ZenDesk, Constant Contact, Pivotal Tracker, and more.
    Technologies: Authorization, Authentication, CAS, AWS S3, D3.js, jQuery, RSpec, PostgreSQL, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby
  • VP of Technology and Product

    2010 - 2014
    BLiNQ Media
    • Established the product vision, strategy, and development in creating the product Local LiFT, which launched in under six months and won the Facebook PMD Innovation Award in Oct 2013.
    • Built Facebook's first ever third-party ad management platform that created multi-variant social ads for their Facebook Ads API before it was publicly released.
    • Implemented a custom in-house ad optimization algorithm that systematically determined winners and losers for advertising campaigns and make budgeting, day-parting, and other optimization decisions based on that that intelligence.
    • Developed a brand analysis algorithm and application that would allow big brands to evaluate their Facebook social presence against that of their competitors, find overlaps, and discover new keywords and demographics for optimal targeting all without spending a single dollar.
    • Upgraded the entire SOA stack from Rails 2 to Rails 3 and then Rails 4 as well as switching from Resque to Sidekiq, which delivered nearly 8x in performance improvements.
    Technologies: Facebook Open Graph API, Engine Yard, Resque, Sidekiq, MySQL, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby, OAuth 2, Facebook Connect, Facebook Ads API
  • Founder

    2005 - 2010
    Calculated Combustion
    • Built a custom marketplace for the biotechnology industry using Merb, DataMapper, and Solr Search.
    • Helped found the Ruby Midwest conference, creating an amazing conference for people passionate about Ruby to network and learn in the heart of the Midwest. Organizer of KC Ruby.
    • Built an in-image and in-screen advertising platform, driving brand engagement for advertisers. The patented in-image ads are overlaid on editorial photos where a user's attention is actively focused, creating higher viewability and engagement, to a better consumer experience.
    • Built a social management dashboard that connected to Facebook and Twitter for compliance-based content creation, multi-network engagement and listening, and reporting.
    • Built a revolutionary knowledge e-learning service which dramatically increased retention and learning speed.
    Technologies: Unobtrusive JavaScript, XML, Solr, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Ruby


  • Checkmate (Development)

    The iOS version of the Checkmate application.

  • BLiNQ Media | Local LiFT (Development)

    Local LiFT is truly one of a kind. No other solution can provide this kind of automated ad creation with local-level, market-specific targeting. Retailers, consumer packaged goods makers, and shopper marketing teams have been looking for an effective solution that delivers local reach with both scale and efficiency.

  • BLiNQ Media | BLiNQ Ad Manager (BAM) (Development)

    BLiNQ Media, a social engagement advertising company and the pioneer of performance-driving Cost per Social Action (CPSA), recently announced the release of the beta version of BAM (BLiNQ Ad Manager), a new technology designed to make it easy for big brands to deliver breakthrough results in social networks. The technology, built on the Facebook Ads API, provides sophisticated brand marketers and agencies with unprecedented targeting, performance, and scale in Facebook social ad campaign management.

  • Penrose Senior Care-Check Audit (Development)

    Penrose Senior Care Auditors is the first and only tech-enabled senior care auditing solution to ensure seniors are okay and receiving the care they need, while providing families peace of mind. We built the online platform that allows clients to connect with Penrose Certified Auditors as well as the native application that allows auditors to perform their senior care checks from their smartphones.

  • AgLocal (Development)

    After receiving $1 million in VC funding from Andreessen Horowitz, it was clear it was time to scale this company to rapidly bring their passion for great food delivered to your door globally. I came on board specifically to build out their integration with Amazon Fresh on-demand grocery delivery service.

  • OneHQ (Development)

    Revamped the existing SOA platform to have amazing visuals powered by big data and D3.js charts and animations. Spearheaded the transformation of deployment for our web applications to continuous celivery for all apps in our SOA utilizing RSpec, Capybara, Factory Girl via third-party integrations with GitHub, TravisCI, CodeClimate, and Engine Yard.

  • SocialVolt | Social Media Management Software (Development)

    Built a social management dashboard that connected to Facebook and Twitter for compliance based content creation, multi-network engagement and listening, and reporting.

  • Obsidian Portal (Development)

    I was the co-founder of this niche social network. My co-founder was well aware of the problem GMs faced with Tabletop RPG, in which the game information is stuck in their notebook. We replace the notebook with an online planning, wiki, and social network for gamers willing to pay a monthly subscription for the service. Can you imagine having to pay $5/month for Facebook? Well, we found an audience that loved to pay us monthly for the service. In fact, the service was so loved we won a Gold ENnie Award at GenCon every year I was a member of the team.

  • DoLeaf | eCommerce Marketplace (Development)

    DoLeaf is an online marketplace to find and buy plants from speciality nurseries and independent garden centers.

  • GumGum | In-image Advertising Platform (Development)

    Built an in-image and in-screen advertising platform, driving brand engagement for advertisers and increased revenue for publishers across every screen. This project was tricky because it had to load JSON and ad images from a third party after the image on the page had already been rendered. We accomplished this utilizing JSONP to overcome the cross-domain restrictions and deliver these patented in-image ads.

  • Total Recall Learning (Development)

    Each lesson on the Total Recall Learning platform includes a variety of videos and audio lessons. These rapid fire lessons are followed by interactive question and responses. Students can instantly see which answers you get correct. When you miss a challenge, we'll quickly show you how to improve.

  • Toptal Mentor
    Ryan is a mentor in the Toptal Global Mentor’s Program. This program is a partnership between Toptal and General Assembly to provide high quality mentorship for students from minority and low income backgrounds who are looking to begin their careers as professional software engineers. Ryan shows commitment to diversity in tech by mentoring a General Assembly student every week for a year, covering everything from coding tips and tricks to advice on making it in the industry.


  • Languages

    JavaScript, Ruby, HTML5, Haml, HTML, CSS3, CSS, SQL, XML, Swift, Kotlin, SCSS, CoffeeScript
  • Frameworks

    Bootstrap, Capybara, Factory Girl, Ruby on Rails (RoR), Selenium, AngularJS, Angular, OAuth 2, PhoneGap, Slim
  • Libraries/APIs

    Facebook API, jQuery, Sidekiq, Facebook Open Graph API, Facebook Ads API, Node.js, ThinkingSphinx, Social APIs, Resque, Selenium WebDriver, Underscore.js, Stripe, Stripe API, Twitter API, React, D3.js, Backbone.js
  • Tools

    Git, GitHub, Facebook Connect, RSpec, Solr, Adobe Illustrator, Nginx, Apache, Passenger, Adobe Photoshop
  • Paradigms

    Test-driven Development (TDD), Agile Software Development, Continuous Integration (CI), Scrum, Unit Testing, Continuous Deployment, Continuous Delivery (CD), SOA, Kanban, Unobtrusive JavaScript
  • Platforms

    MacOS, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Engine Yard, Heroku, Docker, DigitalOcean, Ubuntu, Linux, AWS EC2, Shopify, WordPress, iOS, Android
  • Storage

    JSON, Redis, AWS S3, AWS RDS, MongoDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL
  • Industry Expertise

  • Other

    CTO, Leadership, Stripe Payments, Full-stack, Lean Startups, SaaS, Ajax, Lean Development, Product Management, Product Development, Lean Canvas, Software Development, Story Carding, Integration Testing, Capybara-Webkit, APIs, Software, Software Consultant, Front-End Developer, Social Media Optimization, Homebrew, Open Source, Ad Optimization, Digital Advertising, Ruby Gems, Software Architecture, CAS, Authentication, Authorization, Point of Sale, Digital Media, Digital Marketing, Puma


  • Professional degree in Rails for Zombies and AngularJS
    2014 - 2015
    Code School - https://www.codeschool.com/
  • MBA in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
    2009 - 2011
    University of Missouri Kansas City - Kansas City, MO
  • Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Mathematics
    1998 - 2001
    University of Iowa - Iowa City, IA

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