Why I Ran for the ODTUG Board of Directors

With the ODTUG Board of Directors nomination period now open (Nomination Guidelines here), I think it is appropriate to talk about some of the reasons why I first decided to run for the Board.

First, I wanted to give back to the organization that I felt I had received so much from. My introduction to ODTUG was done by the then President, Kent Graziano. I had seen Kent at a conference, and when a project my company was working on needed some expertise and mentoring about Oracle Designer, Kent’s name was the first that came to mind. Kent spent a week or so onsite with us, and some time during the next few months on the phone working with us. During this time, Kent asked if I had ever heard of ODTUG. At that time, the answer was ‘No’. Well, Kent remedied that situation. The very next year was my first ODTUG experience. And I’ve been hooked ever since. Thanks Kent!

Throughout those early ODTUG years, I made many friends, several for life, and leaned on the experts to help me become a better professional. I hope that I helped some folks along the way as well, just by talking through common problems and trying to come up with some uncommon solutions.

Second, I wanted to help the organization grow stronger. I first came on the Board in 2007, and the conference that year was in Daytona Beach. While I was proud of the efforts of the organization at that time, I knew that we could do better. Everyone on the Board felt the same way that I did. From some of the long-term Board Members, to those that had joined at the same time as me, there was one thing that we all had in common. We could do better, and we would do better. Since that time, the conference has grown each and every year. We have become a more diverse organization. I am proud of our progress to this point. But we aren’t done yet.

Third, and possibly most importantly, I felt that being on the Board of Directors would give me a unique opportunity to further my Oracle education. Board Members have the advantage of almost unprecedented access to Oracle product management, the Oracle development teams, and other industry experts. One example that comes to the forefront was in 2008, when I was conference chair of Kaleidoscope in New Orleans. While I was not able to take in as many presentations as I might have liked, there was one in particular on Oracle Application Express that I regretted missing. Afterwards, I ran into David Peake and convinced him to spend a little one on one time with me to talk about the subject of his presentation. While I know David is very giving of his time, and strives to help all Oracle customers, I can’t help but think he was a little more accommodating because of the outstanding relationship that the Board enjoys with all of Oracle product management.

Being on the Board of Directors has been, and continues to be, a privilege, an honor, a huge committment, and a wonderful learning opportunity. I respect the position that I am in, and take the responsibility very seriously. When decisions need to be made regarding the organization, the guiding force must be what is best for its members and the long-term health of the organization.

Is being an ODTUG Board Member for you? That is something that you will have to answer for yourself. I encourage you if you are interested to click on the link above to find out more information. The deadline for nominations is Wednesday, September 28, at 5:00 PM EDT.

If you are one of the five that will be elected by the members to serve on the Board for a two year term starting January 1, 2012, I look forward to serving the rest of my term with you!

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