Humans of Westridge: A/V and Tech Support Brian Murdock


Amanda S.

Mr. Brian Murdock, Westridge’s A/V and Tech Support.

Whether he is saving a classroom from malfunctioning technology or blasting your favorite music at a school dance, Brian Murdock, Westridge’s A/V and Tech Support, always manages to have a good time in whatever he does. Before coming to Westridge, Murdock taught technology classes at schools. “I went from [teaching] to doing more and more IT related things. They kept asking me stuff like, ‘Hey, we need wireless.’ I’m like, ‘Okay, well, I guess I’ll install that.’ Then like, ‘Hey, we need network printing.’ Well, I guess I’ll install that. It just sort of went from less teaching to more just working on IT. Which is satisfying in a weird way.”

Brian Murdock has almost 20 years of experience in schools and serving as an IT coordinator at Aveson Charter Schools. He also taught Intro to Computer and was an IT Generalist at Valley High School. Murdock worked at AB Technologies and eventually began his IT journey at Westridge in 2018. 

He described the main three reasons why he loves Westridge, “My favorite thing [about Westridge] is that it hits sort of the big three that I find good in a job. So it has autonomy, in the sense that I can do the things I need to do in the order I need to do them. It adds complexity because I need to use my brain to solve a lot of problems. And it has an actual impact. So, the stuff I’m doing makes a difference to the people I’m doing it for.” 

Compared to his job at Westridge, he found that installing technology at his prior job lacked significance, “I would do a lot of the same things. It all just felt kind of meaningless. And you can only install TVs for rich people so often. There’s no meaning to it. But when you install the same TV in a classroom that people are going to use every dayI don’t knowit just feels different.”

Brian Murdock with his wife, Susie Murdock. (Amanda S.)

Along with his natural love for teaching, another perk of Westridge is that his wife, Lower and Middle School Learning Support Specialist Susie Murdock, is also a part of the Westridge community. “We’ve actually worked at different jobs before at the same place. We’ve always done different things at the same place. But interestingly enough, what we do is different enough that we almost never see each other other than just in passing like, ‘Hey.’ So we carpool, then we do our thing. Then we carpool back and talk about, ‘What did you do today?’”

Aside from the daily grind of fixing classroom technology, Murdock also plays a large role in the technology and music behind Westridge’s school dances. Murdock explained how he first became involved as the school DJ, “I did all the speakers and all the equipment. But, [Westridge] would either use a Spotify playlist or they would hire a DJ. But the problem, at least in my mind, is they always play the same songs. I kept thinking, you know, there’s a lot of music out there. There’s more stuff out there. So I just started adding those in. And it’s a lot easier to do a dance with the DJ equipment. It’s all about queuing it up and mixing and makingsort of managing energy level. It’s a fun thing to try.”


To get to know Mr. Murdock better, here are his answers to some fun quick questions:


PC or Macbook Computers? “I’m agnostic on both. They do the same thing. They get to the same place differently.”

What is your favorite food from the Commons? “Probably sodas. I spend so much money on sodas.”

Do you have any hidden talents? “I’d say, probably I do. So for example, I used to be a prison guard. So, I’m familiar with the dynamics of power and authority. And I used to work as a firefighter. So, weirdly enough, that comes up every fire seasonpeople start asking me questions.”

What is your favorite hobby? “Latelyseems to be DJ-ing.”

What is your most ideal vacation destination? “I’m kind of stuck in Hawaii. It’s kind of hard to go wrong with Hawaii. Don’t need a passport. It’s still way far away and still feels like nowhere else. So the islands, especially the smaller islands, the speed limit is 25. Which is really weird for people who live in LA. It’s 50 everywhere. And it takes a couple of days to get used to it. And eventually, you sort of realize, why am I in a hurry? And you slow down. And then it all works out. That’s when you’re actually on vacation.”