Printed 2017/07/25 09:17PM

Why I Don’t Run for the PASS Board

By Steve Jones, 2010/03/24

It’s getting close to that time of year when you can apply to run for the PASS Board of Directors. Each year we have 3-4 openings that need to be filled as the current board members move on. Last year there was a bit of controversy when Tim Ford applied to run, but wasn’t chosen to be on the slate. More than a few people, myself included, noted that it didn’t seem to make sense that someone that has spent a lot of time volunteering for PASS wouldn’t get on the slate.

This year I hope the nominations are more open, with more transparency for the process of selecting candidates, or weeding them out if you prefer. I also hope that we do get more people who actually decide to participate in the community and help run the organization.

So why don’t I run?

I get that question a lot, since I’m someone that believes in, and supports, the community. I’m paid to be out in the SQL world, talking to people, promoting SQL Server, and helping to teach people more about the product. I work for Red Gate Software, but they pay me to to promote SQL Server. Actually, now that I think about it, maybe Microsoft ought to pick up a piece of my paycheck every month? (Steve B, I’m happy to forward on my Paypal address to you)

When you volunteer, you commit. You ought to treat that the same as a paid position and do a professional job. I’d have to approach things in that manner, and honestly, I don’t have the time. I know I could make the time, but something else in my life would lose time, and in this case, it would be my family.

My wife is more successful than I, having a busy career. Her job takes her around the US quite often, and many times on short notice. That becomes a problem for my career when I need to travel. I’ve cancelled two trips in the last year, and it’s likely I would need to cancel out of some PASS board meetings since even with long term notice I can’t always count on her job to respect those downtimes. I also handle more of the kid duties in our lives, moving kids to events, helping with homework, etc. As an idea of our craziness this year, my wife traveled 3 days the weeks of:

I was gone 3 days the week of Mar 1, got home Sat night at 11pm. My wife left for 9 days at 6am Sun for a horse event. She returned Tues at 2am, Mar 16th and left Thur Mar 18th for a two day trip. She returned Fri night and I left for the UK on Sat morning.

Then there are my kids. I travel a little for work, but adding in another responsibility means that family time takes a hit. I would have to spend more time looking at PASS business, and less time on other family events. As it is I work a lot at night, weekends, etc. to make sure things are running smoothly, and for now I’m not willing to reduce the amount of family time. I spend a lot of time with my kids, but I miss a lot as well.

My kids are growing up, and their need to have me around diminishes every year. That’s good and bad, but it does mean that I can see that I’ll have more time in the future and being a Type-A person, I’ll need to find something to do in that time.

I’d like to run for the PASS board at some point, just not this year.

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