Darrow Kirkpatrick


I grew up in a Navy family where I learned integrity, economy, and the value of work. I’m an Eagle Scout, and graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Virginia. Soon after college I discovered personal computers, and got in on the ground floor of that revolution.

I started my own software company, which I eventually sold to Haestad Methods — a pioneer in numerical modeling for PC’s. Haestad Methods eventually sold to Bentley Systems — a global leader in architecture and engineering software. I retired from Bentley in the Spring of 2011 after 29 years of programming, designing, and managing computer software.

I began serious saving and investing in my mid-30’s, and retired at age 50. I’m not a dot-com millionaire. And I didn’t become financially independent by flipping real estate or trading hot stocks. I did it the traditional way: hard work, frugality, prudent investing, and patience.

I’m an engineer, not a salesperson or a financial advisor. When it comes to personal finance, my top priorities are simplicity, reliability, and safety. Now my mission is to help others become financially independent, as I did, through my writing about personal finance.

I’m still in love with my wife of 30+ years, and I have a wonderful son who is an amazing engineer and artist!

Related Articles

Here is more of my story, and how it relates to personal finance: How I Retired Early.

And some frequently asked questions about: My Finances.

And, some of my other writing: Darrow Kirkpatrick Blog.


Here is what I value, in life, and at CanIRetireYet.com:

  • Putting others first
  • Telling the truth, kindly
  • Giving more than getting
  • Living simply, using less
  • Experimenting, iterating
  • Working smarter
  • Being present, cultivating equanimity
  • Letting go, accepting change

These are aspirations. Like most humans, I’m less than perfect.
If I get off track, forgive me. And, even better, help me improve!