Grace Rante Thompson

  • LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/gracerantethompson
  • Website: http://gracie.engineering
  • Github: http://github.com/gratchie
  • Twitter: @graziee

Full stack engineer with 15+ years experience in high performance computing environments, at scale. Employs Devops, Automation and Agile methodologies to help design, build and run applications and related infrastructure. Fast learner, detail oriented, consistently delivering solutions and accustomed to the needs of a dynamic and fast paced production environment.

Specialties: Infrastructure Architect, Automation at scale, High-Performance Computing, SRE, Tech Lead, Infrastructure as Code, Start-up buildout


Kubernetes, Cloud Native Infrastructure, Security, Observability, Infrastructure as a Code


Current Role: The Walt Disney Studios

  • Lead SRE - Production Technology Architecture

1.) Disneytoon Studios - Glendale, California - Animation Studio - Senior Systems Engineer - (April 2016 to April 2018)

  • Design, build and maintain, cross-disciplined systems across all major operating systems, leveraging various devops tools with focus on automation
  • Manages application infrastructure and core data center stack, as well as high performance multi-petabyte storage and backup infrastructure of the facility
  • Completed various, multifaceted projects - Facility OS upgrades, Vsphere Enterprise 6.5 cluster buildout, Windows 10 infrastructure buildout, VPN Deployment, Aspera asset transfer pipeline, Advanced APM Monitoring, AWS infrastructure design
  • Design and Implement automation tools like Puppet, Ansible and Terraform for infrastructure systems with focus on IaC, Security and Compliance
  • Built and Deployed Gitlab CI/CD platform and pipeline processes
  • Lead the systems team in adapting Kanban methodology. A flexible agile method focused on helping interrupt driven teams with uneven demand times and specialized tasks requiring concentrated focus.
  • Built and deployed Jira Service Desk as the defacto ticketing system for the studio
  • Built and deployed Jira and Confluence as a Project Management tool and Documentation po
  • Mentor system enginers and help them navigate the pipeline and pace of this industry.
  • Lead the systems team in adapting Kanban methodology. A flexible agile method focused on helping interrupt driven teams with uneven demand times and specialized tasks requiring concentrated focus.
  • Identified systems risks and analyze its impact in order to create a more thoughtful, data driven, 5 year technology roadmap
  • Architect an IT Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery plan for the studio
  • Evaluate various emerging technologies geared towards Secure, Infrastructure-as-a-code model: Cloud storage backups/archives, Object Storage, Containers, CI/CD workflows, Clearpass etc

2.) Digital Domain 3.0 - Los Angeles, California - Cinematic, Visual Effects Studio
- Senior Systems Engineer - (October 2008 to April 2016)

  • Primarily in-charge of architecting, building and maintenance of Linux Desktop, Production servers and Render systems infrastructure for Digital Domain group of companies
  • Developed diskless network boot image using Onesis and Avere cache systems for render farm consisting of ~1,500 nodes (14,000 cpu cores) between onsite, co-location and remote facilities.
  • Designed and built Docker based cluster architecture for development pipeline Engineered render systems with Vmware ESXi to be used for cloud computing rendering.
  • Developed a centos build for ~800 desktops and ~1,500 render nodes and migrate the facility from using Debian OS to CentOS.
  • Designed and implemented Puppet to automate configuration, installs, management, and release deployment on all Linux Desktops and Servers
  • Deployed Chef to provision configuration and software installs on all Windows Desktops
  • Architect and implement desktop, render and core systems for satellite facilities: Digital Domain Vancouver, DD San Francisco, DD London/RMW.
  • Helped deploy a global distributed version control system (subversion, Multisite Wandisco) for all DD facilities
  • Implement VMware ESXi to efficiently and effectively consolidate core system servers.
  • Implement Aspera Faspex system to facilitate data transfers between multiple sites and off-site vendors
  • Data Center migration/relocation assessment, planning and execution
  • Systems and CG pipeline integration.

3.) Lucasfilm Animation Singapore - A Lucasfilm Ltd. Division working on films, television series and games - Linux Administrator - (October 2005 to September 2008)

4.) Digital Eyecandy Studios - 3D animation studio producing full-length feature films - System Administrator - (March 2003 to October 2005)


  • Polytechnic University of the Philippines (Graduate March 2001)
  • Bachelor of Science in Electronics and Communications Engineering


  • AWS Solutions Architech 2019

Systems Engineering Film Credits: Real Steel, Percy Jackson, Hoodwinked, Star Wars - The clone wars (film and tv series), Tron, Deadpool, Enders Game, X-Men, Maleficent etc