I'm happy to announce that I have once again been awarded the vExpert status for the year 2014. Being a vExpert is important to me, not for the licenses or perks that come with the title, but for the networking and learning opportunities that arise throughout the year.
Every year at VMworld John Troyer (@jtroyer) and Cory Romero (@vCommunityGuy) put together a vExpert/VCDX reception. Just think about cramming a couple hundred vExperts/VCDX's into a room with free beer for a couple of hours – certainly any virtualization issue you have can be easily resolved within those 4 walls. If I weren't a vExpert I most likely, well, I know for sure I wouldn't have received invites to the last two CTO parties in which I've had the opportunity to meet and speak with a couple of lesser known guys like ohhh Stephen Herrod and Pat Gelsinger 🙂 Need proof? Here's your Toronto VMUG leadership team with our best buddy Pat.
The best part about being a vExpert which really doesn't directly relate to being a vExpert at all ( I know, that makes no sense, just bare with me) is how it has opened up the doors for some lifelong friendships. While going through the motions of what it takes to be a vExpert; engaging with the community, sharing knowledge, presenting and evangelizing I have met a lot of people who truly inspire me and I'm lucky to be able to call a friend. I've had the chance to form a great friendship with guys like Jason Langer and participate within the #vDB (These are some of the greatest guys I know), and also follow the lead of fellow Canadian vExperts like Angelo Luciani and Eric Wright. Speaking of those last two names – if anyone does community right it's got to be Angelo and Eric. The dedication these guys have to the community is amazing – Eric, a dedicated blogger with a great insight on IT, always willing to stand up and share what he is thinking. And Angelo, who you can see the excitement in his eyes just to be amongst the community in the hang space at VMworld, truly cares about the community and brining people together. These are definitely two of the biggest supporters I have had over the years. These friendships extend far beyond the VMware community and I hope will exist long after 'the next big thing' comes and disrupts the datacenter!
Anyways, I'm starting to get off topic now and I'm also beginning to sound like a 13 year old girl, so I'll stop name dropping now! Congrats to all the new and returning vExperts and thanks to everyone for their support over the years. A huge animal style thanks to John and Corey for organizing and 'herding the cats' again this year. And the biggest thanks goes out to you, the community, for all the feedback and encouragement you have given me over the last year. I'm thrilled to once again be named a vExpert!