I've had the pleasure of starting a company with Dirk (@Rackspace) and working with him on numerous other projects. Dirk has an unbelievable amount of passion for whatever he is working on and I am always in awe of how much he knows about so many things. Whether it is marketing strategy, sales funnel building techniques, designing a web app for scale, brewing craft beer, bee-keeping, design theory - you name it, Dirk knows something about it. It turns out this talent is incredibly useful when starting companies (and mentoring startups), since so much of your success depends on your ability to wear multiple hats when you are getting started. But perhaps most important of all, Dirk is just a heck of a nice guy.
He's a brilliant storyteller with the ability to quickly understand the "soul" of any business - an essential skill in a mentor for an early stage business trying to find itself. He is also a brilliant coder AND marketer - making him a rare bird and invaluable asset for us.