About Michael T. Eckhardt
Since moving from New England to Florida two decades ago, Michael T. Eckhardt has made a name as one of Miami’s top IT business analysts and consultants. The founder and CEO of Sunshine State Consulting, Eckhardt has worked with the likes of Office Depot, Cisco, and Kraft, helping build database systems from the ground up, and improving business processes. He is also an avid fan of Miami sports, particularly of the Miami Heat, Miami Dolphins, and the University of Miami Hurricanes.
As a boy growing up in Concord, N.H., Eckhardt was an active skier and snowboarder, participating in the Junior X-Games at the age of fifteen. He was also a three-sport athlete; he was a wide receiver, a shortstop, and a shooting guard at Bishop Brady High School. While he was not ranked by any of the major recruiting services, he was heavily recruited by top NCAA Division II and III teams in New England, including Pace, Bentley, Amherst, Tufts, and Adelphi. He initially made the basketball team at Bentley as a preferred walk-on before transferring to Worcester Polytechnic Institute as a junior. At WPI, he scored a total of 383 points in two seasons, making 35% of his three-point attempts and averaging close to 9 points a game before suffering a season-ending injury in his senior year.
Life at WPI also drew out Eckhardt’s fun-loving side; he helped organize the annual Gaming Weekend, an event featuring board games, RPGs, and video games. He excelled academically at WPI, earning a bachelor’s degree in computer science with minors in English and creative writing.
Not long after graduating from WPI, Eckhardt received a job offer from Cisco; the position was based in the company’s Latin American headquarters in Miami, Florida. Eckhardt describes the long road trip south as a pivotal moment in his life. As a networking consultant, Eckhardt worked on some of southern Florida’s largest data centers and IT command centers. After fifteen years in Cisco, Eckhardt decided that it was time to strike it out on his own. Thus, Sunshine State Consulting was born. Over the past decade, his network consulting practice grew into a full-service IT and telecoms company, spanning project management, business analysis, vendor management, and managed services.
In his spare time, Michael T. Eckhardt manages and coaches the Bimini Ballers AAU program, a basketball team which serves Miami’s homeless Hispanic population. The Bimini Ballers team has produced athletes who have gone on to receive scholarships at the NCAA Division II and NAIA level. He is also a Miami Heat season ticket holder and was on hand to witness Alonzo Mourning’s last game as an NBA player. Though he may not be an alumnus of the University of Miami, Eckhardt has nonetheless donated to the university’s basketball program.
Michael T. Eckhardt lives in the suburban community of Coral Gables with his wife Joanie; his twin daughters, Katherine and Kathleen; and his son, Dwayne. Joanie, whom Michael met at Cisco, was a soccer player at Eckerd College. Katherine and Kathleen are both softball players, while Dwayne is showing promise as a skateboarder.