Leaving SF but my heart is still in San Francisco
So I'm about to write the 5,000th blog about a founder leaving San Francisco.
Leaving SF is the most conventional thing you can do right now ... the crazy contrarians are probably moving to SF. So I’m definitely being very conventional.
I love San Francisco. I especially love the San Francisco of ten years ago. I still love the present-day SF (even with all its well-known problems) -- I'm not an SF hater. And my heart will forever be in SF -- it is where I met my wife, where my kids were born, where I started (and sold) my companies, built strong friendships, and where I become myself (I've spent all my adult life in the city).
We're not leaving SF because we hate the city (though it is less good than it was ten years ago).
We’re not leaving SF to get lower taxes (though it is a nice benefit).
We’re not moving SF to get away from the crime (though that’s also a nice benefit).
We're moving for the same reasons lots of people move: to be closer to family, to have an adventure, and for my wife's career.
One of the benefits of COVID is that many people can truly work from anywhere and SafeGraph (where I work) is a remote-first company. Not that long ago, every SafeGraph executive was based in SF. Even last year, 4 execs were still in SF. And then I become the only one. Today, none of the people that report to me are in the Bay Area except for my amazing assistant who lives in the East Bay. But all is not lost -- one SafeGraph executive just decided to move back to SF: she is the contrarian one.
We are not moving to Miami or Austin or Nashville (which are all amazing cities). And we are not moving to Park City or Aspen or Hawaii or Puerto Rico. We've moving to the Commonwealth of Virginia (just outside of DC). If you are in the area, please let me know.
I still love SF and will make a point of coming back often (at least once a quarter) as my heart will forever be in San Francisco.