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In the Interests of Transparency

I read Stuart Ainsworth’s blog post this morning, and I thank Stuart for posting something. However, there’s an implication in there that I know more than I’ve posted and am withholding information. So, in the interest of transparency:

I give PASS, the organization, and the PASS Board of Directors Nominating Committee, full permission to release anything about my application to run for the board of directors, with the exception of my home address, phone numbers, social security number, and birthdate.

I'm sure most comments aren't flattering, or maybe not even nice. I'll stand on who I am.

Also, a clarification: since my interview on August 6th, I have received one email as the sum total of my communication from PASS, excepting the Connector newsletter. That email was this morning, as shown below:

I am including the full text of that letter, which is all I know about the reason I was rejected. I can speculate on exact reasons, but this is all I know. The full text is:


Dear Steve,

Thank you for your application to the PASS Board of Directors. After interviews with the candidates, the nominating committee spent an extensive amount of time deliberating before a slate consisting of 5 candidates was proposed to the board. After discussions, a majority board voted to accept the slate. I regret to inform you that your name was not among the 5 candidates proposed by the nomination committee for the 2010 Elections to the PASS Board of Directors.

The nominating committee considered two important factors in their decision for placing candidates on the slate – volunteer efforts with PASS and the ability to be an effective leader and team player in a predominantly volunteer based organization.

PASS is a volunteer organization.  Volunteers who do much of the work for the community do so because they feel valued and appreciated. An effective board member must be able to work with volunteers from all levels of expertise and commitment.  It is the board members responsibility to lead and encourage volunteers. While the NomCom continues to be impressed by your passion and support for the SQL Server Community, questions were raised during the interview regarding your ability to effectively work with volunteers in an executive capacity. The limited work you had on PASS committees was a factor in the NomCom’s decision. This can be easily addressed with your continued participation in PASS committees.  Therefore we ask that you continue to volunteer with PASS, at the international level, so that you gain valuable experience in working with all levels of volunteers.  I look forward to your interest on serving on the Board of Directors for the next election cycle.

On behalf of the PASS Board and the nominations committee, I thank you for your service to the organization. We truly appreciate your volunteer spirit, and look forward to your continued involvement with the PASS organization.

If you have any questions or need further feedback, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly at wsnyder@sqlpass.org.


Wayne Snyder

Distinguished Architect


Steve Jones: I have removed Wayne’s contact information

SQL Server MVP

Microsoft Certified  IT Professional - Database Administrator

Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist - SQL Server

Microsoft Certified Trainer

Business Intelligence Specialist

The Voice of the DBA

Steve Jones is the editor of SQLServerCentral.com and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at twitter.com/way0utwest


Posted by Stuart Ainsworth on 18 August 2010

Steve, just to clarify; if I implied that you knew more than you do, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make that implication.  The caveats I placed on the posting applied to me, and to no one else, and the point of my article was not to debate your nomination, but rather to ask how do we handle situations like this in the future, because it WILL happen again.  

I do think you deserve a full explanation for why you were not selected; have you asked Wayne (as head of the NomCom) for more information?

Posted by Steve Jones on 18 August 2010

My apologies Stuart. I felt like you were implying that in some of your comments.

I am not pursuing this further. I accept the decision of the nominating committee.

Posted by Jeff Moden on 18 August 2010

Steve Jones wrote: "I am not pursuing this further. I accept the decision of the nominating committee."

That's the Steve Jones that I've come to know.  Don't ever change.  You continue to serve with great honor.  Well done, good Sir!

Posted by David Levy on 18 August 2010

Just catching up on the community news after a day to recharge with the family. I am sorry to hear about your very public personal setback.

After the sting wears off we all may look back on this as a good thing. This means that you get to keep being one of the pillars that holds up our online community. You can keep being yourself without fear of politics or NDAs complicating things. Heck, now you can say even more without fear of being accused of not putting yourself out there.

I look forward to more great things from you. I can only imagine all the cool stuff swimming around in your thoughts.

Thanks for all you do.

Posted by Steve Jones on 18 August 2010

Gentlemen, thank you for the kind comments.

Posted by Aaron Nelson - SQLvariant on 18 August 2010


You are already a huge asset and always MORE than helpful to me in my role as a PASS volunteer.  Please keep it up AND run again next year.

Posted by Jason Brimhall on 18 August 2010

Others have said it well.  I too hope you will run next year.

Posted by Grant Fritchey on 19 August 2010

Steve, I'm even more bummed than before because of your responses to this. I'd be completely rip-**** over this issue and how it has been communicated. The fact that you're taking the high road... All I can say is, I admire you more and I'm twice as sorry that you're not running. Well done.

Posted by Steve Jones on 19 August 2010

Thanks, and I appreciate the support.

Posted by Seth Lynch on 19 August 2010

Here's to you running again when the time comes.

We need the likes of you on the PASS board.

Posted by Nitya on 19 August 2010

@Aaron: Why run next year?

Im optimistic that Steve will be re-considered, provided he wont object it

Posted by SQLShaman on 20 August 2010

It is a loss for PASS. Steve is a leader in every sense of the word.Thanks for being the man Steve!

Posted by Niko Neugebauer on 23 August 2010


your service to the community is unquestionable, and your passion for the community service is a something, by comparisson with which, the most of the sql server volunteers should be compared.

With all due respect to the "executive capacity", this one is always something depending on a point of a view. To PASS this thing, please do all us a favour - do not desist. You have a couple of hundreds of guys supporting you all the way ;)

Posted by Paul Paiva on 25 August 2010

(I'm someone who rarely chimes in on these things)

Yeah, I agree to all above comments!

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