Adam Finlayson

AWS cloud and JavaScript developer. Once mapped the maze of twisty little passages all alike. Trained to be the best and beat the best. A petal from a steel magnolia.

Verbs: connect, empower, build

Work / Technology

By day I lead the development team at CardX in downtown Chicago. Our company provides zero-cost credit card processing to merchants by applying a surcharge to cover the cost of acceptance. We are cloud native, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), and I am an AWS Certified Solutions Architect (2017-2023). We follow the serverless and microservce paradigms so the vast majority of our infrastructure is stand-alone Lambda functions. Our language of choice is JavaScript using Node.js on the backend and Vue.js on the frontend. Beyond code itself I believe testing, logging, and documentation are first-class citizens in the development world. Together they form a triforce of excellence.

Prior to joining CardX I spent seventeen years at Northwestern University, most of that in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, where I managed various web technology initiatives.


I moved to Evanston in 2001 and have stayed involved in the community. Most notably I was a founding member of the Grandmother Park Initiative which raised $250,000 to build a park and donate it to the City. I volunteered in a number of political campaigns and served as president of the Democratic Party of Evanston. I am a graduate of Leadership Evanston where I worked on an affordable housing project. I am a board member of the Grandmother Park Fund managed by the Evanston Community Foundation.


I like to cook and describe my cooking as “simple food done well.” I draw a lot from the American south and southwest. During block party, for example, I usually barbecue ribs or a brisket. I listen to podcasts about current events, technology, and politics. My musical preferences are classic rock, hip hop, and recommendations from Flow State. I bike to get around or ride the CTA when weather doesn't permit. I know my way around a sewing machine. I believe that relative to twelve, ten is grossly overrated.


I was born in Dearborn, Michigan, a border suburb of Detroit, and lived there until I was 13. I then moved to the north side of Chicago (Ravenswood / Lincoln Square) and graduated from Amundsen High School. After that I attended Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa where I studied mathematics and computer science.


This site was made using Gridsome, Vue.js, Tailwind, and Netlify.

January 2021 (v11.0.0)