Well, with a title like that, I think the cat’s out of the bag…I’M SPEAKING AT THE PASS SUMMIT!
I still can’t believe it, even as I typed those words and added the graphics from PASS to my site to promote the Summit. I have been selected to present my session “Introduction to AlwaysOn Availability Groups” as a 75 minute regular session at the Summit! It’s hard to believe that I’ve only been a member of PASS for 4 years now, starting with my very first SQL Saturday event in Columbus, OH on June 26th, 2010. Although, even sitting at that first SQL Saturday as a quiet, timid, and more than slightly confused database geek, I knew that PASS would change my life and my career as I knew them, and that has most definitely held true.
You see, it was that first SQL Saturday that introduced me to the concept of local SQL Server user groups, and it was at my local user group that I met and eventually became very good friends with Allen White (twitter | blog) who is now not only a friend, but a mentor to me. At the beginning of every Ohio North SQL Server Users Group meeting, Allen says something to the effect of “Every single one of you has something to share that everyone can learn from.” It’s part of his usual introduction to the meeting, but more than that, it’s a mantra that has inspired me (and many others) and that I have tried to live by over these past 3 years as I’ve spoken at various PASS events.
It really is amazing, as I look back on the last couple years, how much I’ve grown as a database professional, as a speaker, and as a person. I’m more confident, more outspoken and self-assured, and more knowledgeable, largely in part to PASS and the experiences and friendships that I’ve gained from becoming a member of this organization. In fact, if it weren’t for PASS, I would never have met Erin Stellato (twitter | blog), another good friend and mentor who was the connection that ultimately led me to my current job with Hyland Software. It’s funny how such a simple thing as one organization or one event can have such a profound impact on someone’s life, and I know I’m not alone in my experiences. It’s this and this alone that keeps me coming back and keeps me giving back to this awesome organization.
Thank you PASS, and more importantly the volunteers that give up their time and energy to make PASS events happen, for changing my life and giving me an awesome group of people that I’m proud to call my #SQLFamily!