A native New Yorker, David Gee was born, raised, and currently lives in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn. He received a bachelor’s degree in computer science from St. John’s University and worked as a technology intern in New York City’s Department of Consumer Affairs. A founding member of Juilliard’s softball team, David—seen here at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy, last spring, posing with a “live statue”—joined the I.T. Department in 2000, shortly after graduating from St. John’s.
How long have you worked at Juilliard, and what is one of your favorite memories from your years here?
This August was my 10th anniversary at Juilliard; please send all gifts to the I.T. Department, c/o Dave Gee. One of my favorite memories is when Ted Sullivan, who was a lighting consultant, came around and asked if anyone wanted to start a Juilliard softball team. I was first in line.
What job at Juilliard would you like to try out for a day and why?
I would really like to spend a day in the prop shop. I think they have some of the most interesting jobs at Juilliard, and the pride in knowing that everyone loves what they create would be a great comfort at the end of any day.
What is the strangest or most memorable job you’ve ever had and what made it so?
My most memorable job wasn’t one I was paid for. It would have to be when I was a tomato picker in my grandmother’s garden. She would let me check the vines and pick whatever looked good, which would later turn into something very tasty. She was a big reason for why I am passionate about cooking.
If out of the blue your boss said to take the day off, what would you do with your free time?
First, I would set up my out-of-office reply. Then I would then grab my dad and my wife, and head straight to Coney Island to watch a Brooklyn Cyclones game. At the game, I would fill up on cotton candy, hot dogs, and lots of peanuts.
Many Juilliard staff members are also artists. If that applies to you, how do you balance your job and your artistic endeavors? If it doesn’t apply, did you ever consider pursuing an art, and why didn’t you?
I never really pursued art outside of school. My first drama role was in P.S. 127’s rendition of The Wizard of Oz—I played the prestigious role of a munchkin. In high school, I played the trumpet in the concert band. However, I knew that my true place was meant to be in the audience, cheering on the heroes, booing the villains, and whipping out my trumpet and playing along with the band before security escorted me away.
What other pursuits are you passionate about?
Cooking, travel, and photography are my passions. There is nothing better than traveling, learning a new recipe, and then capturing it all with a picture.
What was the best vacation you’ve had and what made that trip so special?
My best vacation would have to be my recent trip to Italy with my wife. We visited Rome, Florence, Venice, and Siena. The scenery was beautiful, the people were wonderful, and most of all, it was the best way to spend our one-year wedding anniversary.
What might people be surprised to know about you?
I think people would be surprised to know that my favorite thing to do is to listen. I love sitting around a table with friends and family and listening to all the great stories that everyone has to share.
What is your favorite thing about New York City?
That I can travel to many different countries just by visiting a few blocks. New York City is really a little bit of everything from the world wrapped into one package. Also, I am a major night owl, and I love the fact that I can pretty much get anything I want no matter what time it is.
What book are you reading right now and what can you tell us about it?
I actually just finished listening to a book, Under the Dome, by my favorite author, Stephen King. It’s is a psychological thriller about a small town that is locked under a dome with no obvious route of escape.