2008 Elections for the PASS 2009-2010 Board of Directors

Thomas LaRock

Biography

Thomas LaRock is a seasoned IT professional with almost a decade of technical and management experience. Currently serving as a database engineering team lead with ING Investment Management, Thomas has progressed through several roles at ING, including programmer, analyst, and DBA. Prior to ING, he worked at several software and consulting companies, working at customer sites in the United States and abroad. Thomas holds a MS degree in mathematics from Washington State University and is a member of PASS and the Usability Professional’s Association. Thomas is also a member of Quest’s Association of SQL Server Experts.

Interest in becoming a PASS Board Member

I attended my first PASS conference in 2004, and started volunteering my time before the end of the first week. I could see that PASS was the exact organization I was looking for: a network of equally minded database professionals willing to share their knowledge and experiences. The amount of professional development that PASS would be able to provide to me seemed (and still is) endless.

Since that time I have progressed through several volunteer positions, gaining more experience working with a distributed organization comprised of volunteers. Around the same time I was taking on more responsibilities at work, and those responsibilities closely paralleled the volunteer work I was doing for PASS. Essentially, my work day revolved around how best to build up and maintain a community that was widely distributed, even on the other side of the world.

In the past year I have become very involved with social networking tools, and I want to use those tools to PASS' advantage. The current community we have is wonderful, we should be able to share ideas other than one week out of the year. I want to bring us together, help people get the professional development they need to keep their skills current, or to advance their career.

Being on the PASS board will allow me to serve as the voice of everyday users, because I am one myself. For those of us that struggle with compliance, change controls, production deployments, etc., I want to help provide feedback directly to the makers of software products and let them know what features are critical for us to do our jobs successfully. I want to bring people together, to increase our membership, and to make certain there is no question that PASS is the top association for database profesionals.