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Tag Archives: #SQLFamily

Oh what a difference a year makes! Well, to be more precise, 14 months and change… But I digress. This past year has been an exhilarating one for me. I have been very busy on just about every front I could be.

  • My son has moved on from Cub Scouting to Boy Scouting, and I am in the process of getting leadership training so that I can help to facilitate his transition into the awkward teen years.
  • I got engaged over the Christmas holiday, to my best friend, the woman whom I have dated for the past two years, who is the absolute love of my life.
  • I have gone from helping support the OPASS Orlando chapter of PASS to working with the SCSUG here in Brevard County, FL.
  • Last but not least, I have gone from working with one of the biggest healthcare providers in Central Florida to a Federal Government contractor providing health care to our country’s finest in Iraq, Afganistan, Africa, and here at home.

Part of my professional transition that I am feeling most excited about is going from working with some of the most out-spoken and prolific SQL Server professionals back in ’07, to working on a very qualified (some 20+ certifications among the team) team spanning the realms of data, storage, and system administration, to flying totally solo.

I have to admit, it is a little humbling when you walk into a shop, coming from years of working on teams with several other folks -some of the best in the business – in the same arena as you, all by your lonesome and sit down to get to work. The place I am at now has had very bad luck with DBAs. So much so, I found myself apologizing to the hiring manager during the interview because DBAs had given them such a horrible experience. I vowed right then and there to turn that impression around. To make their impression of what we do one of adulation, and appreciation. It hasn’t been easy. To say that they have had bad luck is really being somewhat modest. When I sat down to tackle this environment and reign in the rampant security violations and the configuration horrors, I realized a large part of the reason that they had such a hard time. It looked to me like nothing had ever been done to tame the data beast! Nothing!

Enter everything I have learned over the last six to seven years of being a DBA. Everything.

I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the skills I have been taught by my mentors. I have had to rely on every single ounce of knowledge I have gained, not only from the people I have worked with, but also the people who write amazing blogs, like Jonathan Kehayias, Grant Fritchey, Thomas LaRock, or Ola Hallengren. The ones who pen articles for SQL Server Pro, for Simple-Talk, or for SQL Server Central. The ones who write SQL Server books like “SQL Server 2008 Internals”, “SQL Server MVP Deep Dives” (Vols. 1 and 2), or “Pro SQL Server 2012 Reporting Services” (by some very dear friends of mine). These folks have all had a serious impact in my career, and for that I am eternally grateful.

So, to get back to the title, “I’ve Missed You…” – I have. And I will be looking forward to blogging my experiences with SQL and the characters that I come across in my adventures.

At the January oPASS meeting in Lake Mary, it was announced that the chapter would be creating a Board of Directors to help distribute some of the responsibility of running the chapter, and involve more people in the #SQLFamily. The board will also help in planning the Orlando SQL Saturday, held annually each fall. There were four Board positions available for the taking:

  • Program Director
  • Membership/Marketing Director
  • Webmaster/Communications Director
  • Treasurer

All four positions were filled, and I am quite pleased to announce that I volunteered for the Program Director position. Here is my new description within the Chapter:

  • Speakers
    • Seek out and invite potential speaker candidates
    • Review candidates abstracts for appropriateness and quality of training for user group
    • Confirm with selected speaker date availability
    • Provide selected speaker with all necessary information
      • Meeting  location
      • Directions
      • Hotel info
    • Create and collect speaker evals from attendees at each meeting
  • Meetings
    • Handle meeting space reservation
    • Arrange food order and pickup or delivery to arrive at meeting by 6:30

So without further ado; If you are a speaker, and will find yourself in the Orlando area over the course of the next twelve months, I would like to talk to you. We will be lining up speakers for a the upcoming oPASS chapter meetings, at a minimum of three months in advance.

We all have some really good ideas on where to take the Chapter in the future, and there are some exciting things coming down the pipeline. Stay tuned, 2012 is going to be a great year to be in oPASS, and the #SQLFamily!

I was looking for a topic to write my next blog post on, when I read Thomas LaRock’s (t|b|g+) post about helping the #SQLFamily give even more. Where should I begin?

The #SQLFamily to me, is what the Oracle (no pun intended) was to Neo in the Matrix. It is what Albus Dumbledore was to Harry Potter. It is… well, it is family.

I have run into the SQL brick wall, and summoned #sqlhelp – at seemingly all hours of the day or night – and there has been a response, a quick (witted at times), accurate response. I have visited AskSQLServerCentral to peruse the veritable KB of Q & A for ideas to add to my solutions. I have browsed the SQL forums and articles at Simple-Talk.com and SQLServerCentral.com and have found answers to some of the most obscure SQL Server questions and issues.

I have received a wealth of knowledge from the abundance of resources the SQL community has provided, and as many others before me, I have felt the desire to pay it forward. I have volunteered for PASS, ramping up for the annual PASS Summit in Seattle; I have volunteered for some of the various SQL Saturdays that have been held across Florida; I have answered some questions on Ask SQL Server Central, and I started this blog post – all in an effort to try and give back whatever I can to the community that has given so much.

I am rather fortunate to have met a number of the people that I interact with via the “interwebz”. Each and every one of the folks that I have met have been as authentic, and genuine as I could have imagined. Our conversations have been welcoming and informative, and I have gained friends in the process. I have shared thoughts, ideas, and barley with a lot of the folks, and the memories are true treasures.

The #SQLFamily to me, is priceless.