SQLPeople: An Interview With Andy Leonard

The thing that I most enjoy about going to conferences, SQLSaturdays, and user group meetings is the people I get to meet or see there. That’s why I was intrigued when SQLPeople was announced a few months ago.

Recently I had an opportunity to spend time with Andy Leonard (twiter | blog) when he came to Nashville to deliver SSIS training for a client. I truly enjoyed the afternoon we spent savoring hot beverages on the porch of a local coffee shop.

More recently I talked with Andy about SQLPeople. Here’s what he had to say.

JW: Tell me a little about yourself, Andy.

AL: I’m a believer, husband, dad, and grandfather; a farmer, author, and blogger; a SQL Server database developer and SSIS architect. I’m an engineer at heart and I’ve been honored to be a SQL Server MVP for four years.

JW: Professionally speaking, how do you spend your day?

AL: Tweeting. Seriously, I schedule many tweets about a week (or more) in advance – especially the stuff announcing blog posts and Andy Leonard Training, Inc. courses. My days are divided between billable work, business development, and community activities.

JW: You’re known as one of the top SSIS people in the world. How did you get started?

AL: I think there are lots of really smart SSIS people in the community – plus me! I was fortunate enough to be working for Brian Knight when writing began on the Professional SSIS 2005 Wrox book. Brian found himself needing authors and was kind enough to give me an opportunity to work on the project.

JW: How did you learn SSIS?

AL: When we started working on that book, the only people that knew anything about SSIS were the developers building it. They put out Channel 9 videos and blog posts and we gobbled them up while the bits were still warm. I also built relationships with members of the SSIS team at Microsoft. Folks like Donald Farmer, Matt Masson, Ashvini Sharma, and Kirk Haselden were very patient and transparent with me as I bugged them via email. Donald and Matt remain patient with me as I continue to learn. As you know, the SQL Server Community is awesome. I continue to learn SSIS from Jamie Thomson, Adam Machanic, Brett Flippen, Rob Farley, Todd McDermid, John Welch, Jessica Moss, Rafael Salas, Julie Smith, and many others (too many to name!).

JW: How has the SQL community helped you in your career?

AL: Gosh, I wouldn’t have a career without the SQL Server Community. Or I would, but I can’t imagine it would be this cool. I first interacted with the Community via books and newsgroups (remember newsgroups?). I was in a temp-to-perm position (still a temp) trying to get my first big data warehouse to perform when I ran across a post from Kalen Delaney about the impact of Where clause field order in VLDB tables. Everything else I’d read talked about selectivity and density, and I’d tried just about everything to get this one query to perform. Since the reporting tool generated T-SQL semantically, the Where clause was always ordered the same way – which just-so-happened to be the inverse selective/dense order! I took Kalen’s advice and the warehouse started returning results. I got to meet Kalen and Ken Henderson at the PASS Summit 2004 (“The Year of the Storms”). I went into that conference suffering from a serious case of Imposter’s Fear – I kept thinking “someone is going to figure out any day now that I don’t know what the heck I’m doing. Then I’ll get fired.” I left the Summit thinking “I’m a database professional.” That was the beginning of what the SQL Community has done for me.

JW: What is SQLPeople?

AL: That’s a good question! I have an evolving blub posted on the About page. SQLPeople is more defined by what it’s not than what it is, so I’ll start there. SQLPeople is not a bureaucracy. There’s no hierarchy, administrative staff, or leadership in the sense of a board; rather Brian Moran and I bounce ideas around and implement the stuff that survives our strategic thinking email chains. Right now, SQLPeople is a series of interviews to help the SQL Community get to know each other better. Some of the people interviewed are recognizable industry names. Some are not, or at least not yet! I’m learning things about our peers right along with everyone else. I find each interview fascinating and really appreciate the support from the SQL Community. There’s also an upcoming SQLPeople Event in Richmond Virginia 9 Apr. Brian and I have a few ideas worked out that we’ll be announcing this Spring, and we’re always thinking about cool new ways to serve the Community. We believe the key to Community is serving others. Hence the name: SQLPeople – people are first.

JW: How did you come up with the idea for SQLPeople?

AL: Ok, this is weird but true: I had a dream. In the dream I was sitting on a stage interviewing someone and there was this banner hanging from the front part of the stage with the SQLPeople logo. I woke up – it was around 4:00 AM – went to my office and used Word to capture that logo from the dream. I saved it and went back to bed. When I woke up a few hours later, I honestly thought I’d dreamed the whole thing – getting up and everything. But when I checked Recent Items I found SQLPeople.docx. The idea for interviews and SQLPeople Events started there. Serving the Community is something I’ve enjoyed doing for a long time. I hope to continue.

JW: Who is currently involved?

AL: Brian Moran and I are shepherding the vision. Chuck Boyce is working with us on media ideas. Everyone contributes to “visioneering.” We seek – and take – advice from lots of people in Community leadership. We listen, we do not discriminate, and attribute anything we use.

JW: You’ve been involved in other SQL communities. How is this one different?

AL: The “flatness” of it all is very appealing. You don’t have to be elected to be heard (and receive a response / attribution), bureaucracy is non-existent; this combines to allow more focus on serving individuals and the Community. Preserving the “brand” is often a consideration for organizations (as it should be). We preserve the SQLPeople brand by serving people – first.

JW: Are there different aspects to SQLPeople?

AL: Yep. There are the Interviews, of course. There’s the SQLPeople Person of the Year. There’s SQLPeople Events. And there’s more to come – look for an announcement in April and another in the September timeframe. And that’s just the stuff we’ve thought of so far!

JW: What’s the main emphasis of the group? Networking, education, community, something else?

AL: Inspiration is at the top of the list. We believe the items you list flow from inspiration. I know a lot of database professionals. I’ve taught a lot of folks SSIS, and I’ve learned the number one issue isn’t that people don’t know SSIS; it’s that they don’t know what’s possible. With all the information available online, if I can show you something is doable, you can figure out a way to do it. If, while showing you it’s possible, I can inspire you so that you want to do it – there’s no stopping you. Networking, education, and community are very important and all of them have a place in SQLPeople’s endeavors. But they all start with Inspiration.

JW: Tell me about the inaugural SQLPeople event.

AL: It’s in Richmond Virginia on 9 Apr 2011. Scheduled speakers include Michael Coles, Gray Proulx, Jeremiah Peschka, Kendra Little, Brian Moran, and Scott Currie. The format is a 20-minute presentation followed by a 20-minute interview (by me) with questions from floor. We’ll do two speaker sessions/interviews followed by a networking session of 30-minutes; rinse and repeat. Chuck’s recording everything and the goal is to host the videos at SQLPeople.net. Folks can learn more and sign up at the website </ShamelessPlug>.

JW: If you could accomplish only two things with SQLPeople in the next 24 months, what would it be?

AL: Wow, that’s a good question. My first wish is for two more wishes! Seriously, though… The SQL Community is huge and growing. First, I hope SQLPeople refocuses the global conversation in the SQL Server Community on serving individuals and our community. My personal motto is: I am Here to Help™. I see that reflected in SQLPeople already. There’s too much fear, self-preservation – and frankly, selfishness – demonstrated in the recent actions of organizations within our community. Watching it has been personally wrenching. I understand the logic behind the tragic decisions, made even more so by allowing (insisting, even) that people serve process instead of the other way around. SQLPeople isn’t against anyone or any organization. SQLPeople is for people. Second, I’d like to facilitate ideas, projects, and events that inspire database professionals while remaining what Umair Haque describes as a Meaning Organization. As such, we think about significance, outcomes, harmony, purpose, peace, love, and ambition.

JW: What’s your long-term vision for SQLPeople?

AL: Long-term specific goals are really fuzzy at this time. Brian and I have put a lot of thinking into framework-type strategy (the aforementioned Meaning Organization, for example) and thought experiments. We’re in the “what if?” business. Patterns are emerging. Sometimes we bring templates to the table from experience – things that have worked well and things that have not. Sometimes the patterns emerge organically and we grab our boards and start surfing. SQLPeople has less vision than you’d expect from an idea focused on bring inspiration, but it has a purpose. And that purpose is to serve the SQL Community.

JW: What about the project makes you really excited?

AL: I sound like a broken record: Serving the SQL Server Community is really exciting stuff! There are so many ideas out there – so many visions – that need a little initiative applied. I haven’t mentioned this previously: the writings of Seth Godin serve as a pretty cool source of execution ideas. As do the writings of Andy Warren and some guy named Joe Webb. The thing about executing visions is it requires work, trust, and respect. I’ve seen volunteer organizations struggle with this – inside and outside of the SQL Server Community. Rather than try to collect all the initiative under a large umbrella called SQLPeople, we’re hoping to inspire and facilitate folks with good ideas. Brian and I have no illusions: the potential of SQLPeople lies not with us – it lies with the Community, with the people.

JW: How can others participate in the project?

AL: I tried to think of everybody when I sent out the interview questions, but I left out a bunch of cool and interesting people! If you’d like to be interviewed for SQLPeople, please email me (andy@sqlpeople.net). Folks are welcome to read and comment on the interviews and coming-soon content on the SQLPeople.net website. For people interested in attending, the SQLPeople Event in Richmond should be a blast. Also, our announcements scheduled for April and September 2011 will provide more ways for (SQL)people to join in the fun.

I really appreciate the time that Andy dedicated to this interview. He’s a quality guy. If you have an opportunity to spend some time with him, don’t pass it up. You won’t regret it.

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An Outpouring From The Twitter Community

Last week, I was in Redmond, Washington, for the Microsoft MVP Global Summit. This was my fourth time attending the Summit; it’s a great opportunity for networking and providing feedback to Microsoft about their products.

I love catching up with people that I only see once or twice a year.

A Change Of Plans

I arrived late Sunday evening. Monday and Tuesday were packed with technical sessions and energizing keynotes. I learned a lot about the direction Microsoft is considering for future versions of their products.

Everything that’s discussed at the Summit is covered under a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA). I cannot even share the names of the sessions or the speakers who presented. But it was good stuff. I learned quite a bit and hopefully provided some insightful feedback to the product teams.

I was expecting to spend Wednesday, my final day at the summit, doing more of the same. I had signed up to attend sessions on particular technology that I haven’t used much.

But that all changed with a text from my wife telling me that my six-month old was sick; she was taking him to the doctor. An hour later, another text arrived saying that the doctor was sending them to the Emergency Room!

I Gotta Go!

I had to get home. So I packed my stuff and called a cab to take me from the Microsoft campus to my hotel room and then on to the airport.

I also called the airline to rebook a flight for that day. The average wait time was 37 to 51 minutes! I wanted to be on a plane in that time frame, not waiting on hold.

I headed to the airport anyway, without a reservation.

An Outpouring Of Community

As I was doing these things, I shared my trials with the Twitterverse. I tweeted that I need to leave early to be with my wife and six-month old at the hospital.

The well-wishes came pouring in from my Twitter friends. Prayers were offered. Help was offered. Words of comfort were expressed.

A couple of friends searched the web for airline flights to get me home that afternoon.

Another friend shared a premier services telephone number for the airline.

Several friends offered to be the single point of contact for me during my travels, providing me with their cellphone numbers.

One friend even offered to have a meal delivered to my home to help make sure the older four kids had something to eat while my wife and I were occupied with the little one.

I was amazed at the support that came pouring in through my Twitter feed.

A very special thank you to each of you who shared the burdens with me that day and in the days that followed. There are far too many to name specifically or individually, but you know who you are. And please know that I truly appreciate it, more than you know.

David spent three days in the hospital with RSV, a viral infection in the lungs. Thankfully, he’s home now and has fully recovered.

What is Twitter?

Some people say that Twitter is a complete waste of time, that it’s idle water-cooler chat that distracts from real work. It can be.

Others say that it’s a great way for businesses to promote and protect their brand. It can be that too.

But to me, Twitter offers people a chance for community. In a time when the world is getting smaller and faster, Twitter is community. People can interact and invest in each others lives in a way like never before. Does it replace the local community? No, not even close. But it can extend your reach and broaden your community.

So, my Twitter friends, I’m going to have a barn-raising soon. Any takers?

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How Should the PASS Nominating Committee Be Selected?

Over the past few months, the Elections Review Committee (ERC) has been looking into how the community should select its future leaders in the PASS organization. We started with a clean slate. Nothing in the existing process was considered sacred or off-limits. Nothing was considered out of scope. We want to find the best possible way for the community to be completely engaged in the process.

After a great deal of well-reasoned discussion and deliberation, we’ve decided that there does indeed need to be a way to effectively narrow down the field of potential candidates. There are simply too many problems and risks associated with having an unbounded number of candidates on the slate. The issues range from not have enough voters to effectively decide the election, to having ill-equipped candidates reaching the Board, to having competing organizations stuffing the ballot boxes.

This means that some body should exist to consider the applications and pare them down to a more manageable number from which the community can choose. For the sake of continuity, we’ll call this body the Nominating Committee (NomCom).

We’re still discussing how the NomCom will do its job. Expect another post on that topic later.

Who Should Be On The NomCom?

One of the questions that the we’ve grappled with is: how should the members of the NomCom be chosen? If the Board hand selects the NomCom, then they can effectively control the election by controlling who serves on the NomCom.

On the other hand, each NomCom member should have an intimate awareness of PASS, its needs, its operation, etc. Without an understanding of the organization, how can a committee select the most qualified individuals?

So, we’ve put together a draft of the process we’re considering recommending to the Board. This is not finalized. We’re putting it out to the community and we want your feedback.

To see the proposed process, visit the ERC web site. Read the proposal and give us some feedback. We want to make this better.

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Meet Me In Florida!

While much of North America is bracing for the Snowpocalypse 2011, my thoughts are turning to sunny Florida.

I’m not just thinking of an escape from the cold, dreary weather that February brings with it. No, I’m thinking of the warm hospitality of sunny Orlando and SQLConnections.

I’m going to deliver a couple of sessions at the conference. Check out all of the sessions.

SSC01: Locking and Blocking Made Simple
A good working knowledge of how SQL Server makes use of locking and transaction isolation levels can go a long way toward improving an application’s performance. In this session, we will explore SQL Server’s locking methodology and discover techniques for enhancing query response times.

SSC04: Tips and Tricks for Writing Better Queries
Transact-SQL is not a very difficult language to learn. As long as the syntax is correct, it can be quite forgiving. However, to truly get the best performance from your SQL Server, careful consideration should be given to the structure and logic of the queries. In this session, we’ll discuss some Transact-SQL tips and tricks that can be employed to help you write better queries, allowing your server to perform better.

As I tune into the weather channel and see the nasty arctic weather that’s pelting almost 1/2 of the continental United States, I can hardly wait. I hope to see you there, too.

 

How To Become A Consultant

Ever thought about joining the ranks of IT Consultants?

On Thursday January 20th, 2011, I’m presenting a free PASS Professional Development Virtual Chapter webcast on how to get started in Information Technology consulting. If you have the expressed goal or the suppressed desire to become an independent consultant, this webcast is designed to help you create a clear transistion strategy from full-time employee to full-time IT consultant with a minimum of risk along the way.

During the webcast, I’ll discuss:

  • The many hats that a consultant must wear
  • Strategies for minimizing risk during your transition
  • Options for setting up your business
  • How to handle the “Give me an estimate” question
  • Low cost ways to promote your new business
  • Some best practices as you get started

Much of the information comes from my “The Rational Guide to IT Consulting” book published by Rational Press.

I hope you’ll join me for this event. For more information or to register, visit the PASS Virtual Chapter web site.

It’s A Major Award!

“It’s a major award!” That’s what Darren McGavin’s signature role, Mr. Parker, proudly proclaimed to friends and family in the 1983 movie A Christmas Story. He was proud of his accomplishment and of the leg lamp that recognized them. What a great movie!

On January 1st, I received a major award as well. Arriving in my email inbox that day was a notification from Microsoft that I was awarded the prestigious Microsoft MVP Award for SQL Server. This was my seventh time to receive this honor and each time I’m humbled and even surprised. This is no “leg lamp” award and I certainly don’t take it lightly.

If you’re not familiar with the Microsoft MVP Program, here’s a short excerpt from the Microsoft MVP web site.

These exceptional community leaders come from a wide range of backgrounds. They are teachers, artists, doctors, engineers, as well as technologists, who actively share their high-quality, real-world technical expertise with the community and with Microsoft.

Thanks Microsoft! And it’s great to be a part of a such a vibrant and active community.

How To Choose A Topic For Speaking

“The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.” observed Academy Award winning movie producer George Jessel. I think there is some truth to that for many of us.

As a regular speaker at conferences, SQLSaturdays, and other organizations, I’m often asked about public speaking. Some ask about preparation. Others ask about getting started. The most common question is about selecting a topic. That’s one question I can’t answer; I can only share how I do it.

Sharing Your Experiences

Let’s start with the mindset. The way I approach selecting a topic is to first remind myself that I’m not claiming to be an expert in the topic. In fact, I don’t claim to be an expert in anything, really. I don’t pretend to know everything about a subject.

When I speak, my goal is simple – to share my experiences and hopefully help someone else who’s about to go through something similar. Whether it’s troubleshooting a poorly performing server or helping to coach a new technical manager, I want to give them the benefit of my trials and observations. This takes the pressure off of me.

Selecting Potential Topics

As I think about potential topics, I usually consider a few things. First, I look for topics that I’m already pretty familiar with but would like to learn even more. Most every session I give requires me to do research. Preparing to teach something is the best way to really learn it. So, if you’re going to have to do some research, it may as well be in something that interests you, something you’d like to learn more about.

I also look for topics that are underserved in the community. Or put another way, I seek topics that have broad appeal but haven’t been done over and over again by other speakers. These topics aren’t necessarily obvious at first, but if you persist you can usually identify a few.

Finally, I tend to favor entry-level to mid-level topics. Sure, there’s a lot of glory in providing the very high end sessions, but the vast majority of attendees will not be ready for that depth of content. There’s a great need for entry-level to mid-level sessions. This goes back to the prior point: if other speakers tend to gravitate toward the high-end sessions, the mid-level sessions may be underserved in the community.

Creating An Abstract

Once you’ve selected a topic, the next step is to write the abstract.

Creating an abstract is an art. You’ve got to give people a reason to come to your session (or the program committee a reason to select your session for the conference). Stating just the facts about the session in a dry way won’t do that. Make it catchy. Make it compelling.

The title is the first impression they’ll get so you’ll want to put some thought into crafting a good title for your session. Consider titles like:

  • From Zero to Replication in 30 Minutes
  • The Four Pillars of Performance Tuning
  • Manage Your Calendar Or Someone Else Will

The body of the abstract supports and clarifies the title. I usually start with a description of the problem and then talk about the information I’ll convey in the session to help solve the problem.

A Sample Abstract

Consider this real-world abstract that I’ve delivered many times at conferences and Lunch & Learns.

Say Goodbye to Boring Meetings
Ever been in a meeting that drones on and on? It starts late, runs long, and doesn’t really accomplish anything. It’s a complete waste of everyone’s time. Worse yet, since nothing was resolved you’ll have to have a follow up meeting. Argh!

In this session you’ll learn some of the keys to conducting an effective meeting. You’ll gain practical tips for making your meetings more productive and dramatically improving one of the most inefficient parts of your day. You’ll also learn how to help improve meetings your don’t run.

Submitting the Abstract

Once you’ve created the abstract, share it was a few people that you trust to provide candid feedback. Ask them for help with refining your draft to a polished and professional form. Then you can submit it to the local user group, SQLSaturday, Lunch & Learn, or conference.

For More Information

A couple of years ago, I shared my experiences with and techniques for creating presentations in an article I wrote for Simple-Talk.

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start speaking.

Got any other tips that I’ve missed? I’d love to hear from you with your tips for selecting a topic.

The World’s Largest

Each year, the Georgia Bulldogs and the Florida Gators meet on the college grid iron in what’s called the world’s largest cocktail party. I’ve never been; in fact I’m probably not welcomed since I’m an alumni of a rival school, the Auburn Tigers. War Eagle!

You Can’t Handle The SQL!

Last week, I attended another “world’s largest” event: the PASS Community Summit. With over 3,000 attendees, it’s the largest SQL Server-only event in the world. There are over 150 break out sessions, it has several rooms for hands-on labs complete with Microsoft folks to help you with specific SQL issues, and there are plenty of exhibitors there to see.


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It’s got more technical content that your mind can absorb without exploding. Don’t believe me? Just watch Dr. David DeWitt’s Thursday morning keynote address and then tell me how your brain feels. Mine rapidly turned to mush as neurons overheated while struggling to process everything he said.

We Are Family!

But I don’t really think of PASS in those terms. No, to me all of the education at PASS is just a side benefit; it’s the icing on the cake. I think of the Summit as the World’s Largest SQL Family Reunion.

Each fall at this community event, I have the opportunity, no the absolute pleasure, to spend time with friends from around the world. It’s a special week that I look forward to all year long.

Some of the traditions are deeply rooted and planned months in advanced. This year’s SQL Karaoke found over 80 people belting out the tunes in American Idol-like fashion.

SQLKilt is another tradition growing in popularity. Plus there are the breakfasts, the dinners, and the after parties.

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But my favorites are the impromptu gatherings. Having coffee with a friend from Europe, sharing a lunch table with someone I’ve only met through Twitter, and bumping into good friends from other states in the hallways. That’s what gets my blood to pumping and brings a smile to my face.

The technical content is good, but it’s the relationships that matter most to me.

So, to everyone I saw in Seattle last week: Know that I cherish the time that we got to spend together. And if we didn’t get a chance to catch up, let’s not let that happening again next year.

This community rocks.

See you all again next year.

Join Me This Week At PASS

This week at the PASS Community Summit in Seattle, I’m delivering two full length sessions, one lightening session, and chairing a committee meeting to discuss the election process. If you’re attending the conference, I hope you’ll join me at one of these sessions.

Using Covering Indexes (Wed 1:30pm)

Covering indexes can dramatically reduce disk i/o and improve performance. In this 5-minute Lightening Session, I’ll show you how you can make better use of your nonclustered indexes and reduce Key Lookups.

Conducting Effective Meetings (Wed 3:00pm )

Ever been in a meeting that drones on and on? It starts late, runs long, and doesn’t really accomplish anything. It’s a complete waste of everyone’s time. Worse yet, since nothing was resolved you’ll have to have a follow up meeting. Argh! In this session you’ll learn some of the keys to conducting an effective meeting. You’ll gain practical tips for making your meetings more productive and dramatically improving one of the most inefficient parts of your day.

PASS Election Review Committee Community Meeting (Wed 4:30pm)

The PASS Election Review Committee will host a community feedback session to discuss the PASS election procedures. We’d like your input as we strive to improve the selection of the future leaders of PASS.

The PowerShell CookBook for the DBA (Thurs 1:00pm)

The best DBAs work hard so that they don’t have to, well, work hard. In this session, we’ll discuss how you can use the PowerShell cmdlets and snap-ins to create scripts that automate the more mundane tasks in your role as a DBA or developer. We’ll create scripts that check the status of SQLAgent jobs, verify the configuration of your servers, and retrieve information from your SQL Server database. You can even store your results in a database table if you’d like. This session is mostly demos with only a few PowerPoint slides to get us started.

If you’re in Seattle, be sure to stop by and say hi at any of these sessions or in the hallways. I’m always up for good cup of coffee.

The Future Of PASS Elections

Am I stirring up a hornets nest or beating a dead horse bringing up a the PASS elections the day before over 2,500 SQL Server professional converge on Seattle for the 2010 PASS Community Summit? I’m not sure, but I suspect I’ll find out within 24 hours.

So, why would I revisit a topic that was so prevalent and divisive in the SQL community just a few short months ago?  Well, I’ll tell you.

In my posting entitled “A Community Divided“, I made the following observation.

At fault here are the procedures that governed the election process. I have every confidence that those procedures were far better than in prior years. Yet in this case, as extreme as it may be, they fell woefully short. I think that the one thing on which we can agree is that we don’t want to find ourselves in this predicament twelve or twenty-four months from now. We want to learn from this, take corrective action, and move forward.

I still believe that to be the case.

And so does the PASS Board of Directors.

We Can Do Better

A couple of weeks ago, the PASS Board reached out to me. They were interested in creating a committee of people from the SQL community to review the procedures and policies that govern the elections. They asked if I’d be willing to lead such a committee.

I was a bit skeptical at first. I do not want to be a part of any committee whose job is to sanction the elections of 2010. Nor do I have time to serve on a committee that is simply designed to go through the motions because the end is already defined.

I had several good conversations with the PASS Board and I believe my initial skepticism was misplaced. I left with the sense that the PASS Board is genuinely interested in improving the current election process. They assured me that the purpose of the committee is to review the current process and make recommendations for going forward. There is nothing off limits; everything is on the table.

The Election Review Committee (ERC)

I agreed to help with this committee. Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve put together a good team of SQL professionals to serve on the committee. Many of the names you’ll recognize. Some you may not. But all are willing to devote some time to help make difference.

This is a diverse group. Each brings a different perspective and background to the committee. I’m excited about working with each of these individuals. I respect their passion and their ability to tackle and resolve tough problems. You’ll notice that 5 of the 7 are members of the community; only two are actively sitting on the PASS Board.

Providing Feedback

Most of ERC will be in Seattle this week for the PASS Community Summit. Please feel free to stop any of us and share your thoughts about how the PASS elections can be made better; we want to hear your voice as we form our recommendations to the PASS Board.

I’m working with PASS to provide some additional channels for feedback both during the conference and afterwards. Look for more details as they are available; I’ll post them here and they’ll be announced as part of the PASS keynotes and daily updates.

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