The times they are a changin’

Last week, I sent an email to the PASS Board of Directors. It said, in short, that I was stepping down from my seat on the board. In fact, here’s the email:

A few months ago I made a huge change in my career and stepped out of my role as a production DBA and into a new career working with new databases. The more time I spend with these databases, the more I realize that they need an exciting, vibrant community like we have here in PASS. I want to help these communities grow and thrive, but there are only so many hours in the day. I have enjoyed the time that I’ve served on the PASS Board of Directors and I will continue to be involved in the community, but there are new communities that need what we have at PASS. This has not been an easy decision to make, but I am stepping down from the PASS Board of Directors.

Just so you don’t think it sounds contrived, here it is again: I love PASS and I love the SQL Server community. Being a part of PASS has given me a phenomenal sense of community. The SQL Server community has readily welcomed new members and new technologies and continues to grow the meaning of being a SQL Server professional. The community has embraced knowledge sharing in a way that many communities should envy. I keep learning so much every day from all of your blogs, presentations, books, and white papers. And this is where things get difficult. I love what I’m doing with PASS, but I also love what I’m doing outside of SQL Server. There is a lot of knowledge there, but it’s silo’d and stuck in people’s heads. That knowledge needs to get out into the wild. One of the easiest ways to spread knowledge is to help it spread through communities. It’s difficult building a community from the ground up. Hell, maintaining an existing community is difficult. Doing both at the same time is impossible. I asked myself how I could help when I started with PASS several years ago. I jumped in and started a chapter, then I took over a virtual chapter, and then I ran for the Board of Directors. Along the way, I met a ton of people who were kind, helpful, thoughtful, and more than ready to help out. As I slowly came to the realization that I couldn’t build a new community and grow an existing community at the same time, I also came to the realization that there were a lot of people ready to step up and help PASS grow. Knowing that so many of you care and want to help made it a lot easier to come to this decision. I know that no matter what, there are a lot of people who will steer PASS and help it grow. PASS showed me a wonderful community and I want to share that community with other people. I’m not running away and I’m not leaving, I’m just spreading the love around.