PASS Summit 2011, Day 3 – A Tribute to Wayne Snyder


First things first, Wayne Snyder is rolling off the board of directors for PASS this year.  We’d worked together, shoulder to shoulder along with Joe Webb (blog | @joewebb) and other outstanding members of the SQL Server community, for many years of on the PASS board of directors and I’m certain that my tenure on the board and as president of the organization would’ve been nothing but trouble had Wayne not been there, covering my blind side(s), at every turn.  Here’s my tribute to Wayne Snyder:

If you were to mention “Wayne Snyder” to me, I’d instantly start to grin and, probably, nod a little bit.  Wayne is the kind of leader who always comes to mind with overpowering and emotional warmth.  Sometimes when you visualize a memory of a person, you see them in your mind’s eye stooped over a console deep in thought or pontificating at a meeting somewhere deep in corporate America.  But when I recall Wayne, I always see an image of Wayne smiling with his arms out wide as if he’s going to wrap you in the biggest, most comforting, Southern-fried, big brother  hug you’ve had all year.  And that image is loaded with all kinds of deep positive connotations: supportive, enthusiastic, sincere offer you thoughtful conversation, honest convictions, and straight answers. 

To use an analogy, some leaders are only the “thermostat” of their organization – they set the temperature for everyone else.  But Wayne was also the “thermometer” as well – he showed what temperature at which our organization was running.  And that temperature is warm. As a PASS member, you knew within a heartbeat that it was ok to give a shout-out back to the speaker in a crowded auditorium, that there were no stupid questions, that it was ok to be the one who knew the least in the room because, in fact, he was the guy who knew the least in the room once and here he was to help you become the one who knew the most in the room! I honestly can’t count the number of people who Wayne recruited into the ranks of PASS simply by being Wayne.

Thank you, Wayne, for your many years of service to our community.  And thank you most of all for acting as the wellspring of our communities exuberant, uplifting, and just plain fun attitude of embodied in our motto of “Learn. Grow. Share”.  No one does it better than you.

Now, it goes without saying that Dr. Dewitt’s keynote is one of the singlemost anticipated sessions of the entire event.  Why?  As Dr. Dewitt mentions himself, the hallmark of his sessions are a semester of graduate school IT learning distilled into one hour of awesomeness.  There are lots of great resources discussing NoSQL on the internet (and I’ve pointed out a lot of them in the past).  But who wouldn’t rather leapfrog months of on-the-side research learning about NoSQL by enjoying Dr. Dewitt’s keynote?  Watch the streaming video at this SQLPASS link.

And if you’re here at the PASS Summit on Day 3, I hope to see you in my two sessions this afternoon:

Crash! Boom! Bang! 10 Ways to Blow Up Castle SQL Server and the Techniques that Catch Them (DBA-318)
Enterprise Database, Administration and Deployment, Regular Session (75 minutes) in 3AB

Are you a Linchpin? Career management lessons to help you become indispensible. (PD-200)
Professional Development, Regular Session (75 minutes) in 4C4

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