Doc Searls' long and varied professional history includes work as a newspaper and magazine editor, radio personality and marketing executive. His longest professional tour of duty was with Hodskins Simone and Searls — the advertising and public relations agency which he co-founded in North Carolina in 1978, and which went West to become one of Silicon Valley' leading advertising and public relations agencies. (HS&S was sold to Publicis Technology in early 1998.) Doc's marketing consultancy, The Searls Group, began as the public relations arm of HS&S. Over the years he has worked with Hitachi, Sun, Apple, Nortel, Borland, British Telecom, Motorola and other leading companies, in addition to many start-ups.
Doc is also in much demand as a speaker. He has been a keynoter, a featured speaker or a panelist at countless events and trade shows: Digital ID World, O'Reilly's Open Source and Emerging Technology Conferences, eCom eXpo, Les Blogs, Reboot, Samtelerne, Supernova, LinuxWorld Expo, SOHO Summit, Government Technology Conference, National Chamber of Commerce, CES, Comdex, Desktop Linux Summit, Linux Lunacy Geek Cruises, BloggerCon, First Tuesday/Zurich, JabberCon, PC Forum, Seybold, Syndicate and Demo — among too many others to list. He is also a figure in the "unconference" movement, in which he helps organizing the twice-yearly Internet Identity Workshops.