August 19, 2014 – As PASS moves into a new year, I'm excited to announce that the Board of Directors has approved the Fiscal Year 2015 budget and positioned our organization for another great year of growth and service to the data community.
This year's budget process highlighted – perhaps more than ever before – the incredible community expansion that PASS continues to experience. We saw an array of innovative ideas from Board members, community volunteers, and HQ department heads that build on those successes, and I'm excited that many of those are in the budget and underway.
Budget planning and approval can be a long and tedious process, but this year’s tasks were accomplished well within our timeline, thanks to engaged Directors and portfolio owners and the strong relationships they have with their HQ counterparts. In addition, our Finance team worked long hours to assemble research and make the numerous changes that occur during the process, all while keeping our many stakeholders informed. They deserve our huge thanks!
To increase accountability and transparency, we focused this year on budgeting for our current initiatives and goals while committing to revisit further investments through our open budget-exception process for new ideas and future projects. Some key areas of focus in the FY2015 budget include:
- Continuing support for SQLSaturday, Chapter, and Virtual Chapter growth around the world, capitalizing on amazing year-over-year performance in those portfolios
- Exciting growth of our major events, PASS Summit and the PASS Business Analytics Conference
- Strategic planning and activities for growing and engaging our business analytics community
- Increasing focus on our Global Alliance Program to continue its early success in aligning with key partners from the data community
- Continuing IT investments to modernize our platforms and take advantage of technology to enable a stronger, more connected community
As you know, PASS generates a significant portion of its revenue from our event platforms. We are back in Seattle November 4-7 for PASS Summit 2014 and expecting our biggest and best gathering of SQL Server and BI professionals ever. Don't miss our all-star lineup of amazing sessions, non-stop opportunities for community engagement and networking, and perhaps even your first SQL Karaoke experience. We hope to see you there – if you haven’t already signed up, I encourage you to register today.
In addition, the PASS Business Analytics Conference is returning to Silicon Valley in 2015, and we expect this event’s growth to match the increasing community interest and enthusiasm in the analytics space. We have a strong group of influencers helping drive this event, and we're excited about its potential for PASS.
From the governance side of the house, just a reminder that the PASS Board of Directors election is coming up next month. Thanks to our Nomination Committee members for all the time and effort they’ve dedicated to helping streamline the application process for candidates and the work they’ll be doing over the next weeks to help you get to know the candidates. PASS supports the greatest community of technical professionals in the world – it's hard not to want to be a bigger part of that. Thanks and good luck to everyone who applied to run for the Board this year. I’m looking forward to a lively campaign season as the candidates and community discuss how to make PASS even better.
It’s thrilling to see everything happening right now in PASS, our industry, and the data world at large. We're excited to share these experiences with you and help community members continue to connect, share, and learn. I can't wait to see you out there!
– Adam Jorgensen
PASS EVP, Finance and Governance
August 5, 2014 – The five-member PASS Nomination Committee (NomCom) has had a busy summer streamlining the application process and timeline for this year’s PASS Board of Directors elections and working on new campaign events to better engage the community and help them get to know the candidates before voting opens.
First up was a detailed review and update of the PASS Board application, which resulted in two focused documents. The PASS Board Elections Overview covers election processes, rules, and requirements, including everything from applicant criteria, recommended qualifications, and references to time commitments, procedures for ranking applicants and awarding seats, and campaign guidelines. With more requirements details and clearer examples all consolidated in the overview, the application itself is now shorter and easier to navigate.
The NomCom also adjusted the elections timeline so that campaigning opens before balloting and to reduce the time between when candidates are notified of elections results and when those results are announced to the community.
Although the NomCom is still working on PASS-hosted campaign events for this elections season, it has announced two official campaign events for Sept. 18 and 19, before ballots go out. These online Live Speech/Q&A events will feature a time slot for each candidate to give opening and closing statements and have an open Q&A session with the community. The events will be hosted via GoToWebinar; GoToWebinar will provide the audio, with each candidate responsible for providing the video portion of the session, which will depend on the candidate’s webcam and bandwidth capabilities.
“Serving on a previous NomCom and being a former Board candidate, I am happy with the changes we’ve been able to make to this year’s processes,” said NomCom member Allen Kinsel. “The streamlining we did on the campaign timelines and changes to the election events should have a great impact on candidates’ ability to execute successful, interesting campaigns – which should also increase voter interest in who is running and what they can do to make PASS a more successful organization.”
Added Erin Stellato, who has served on both the 2013 and 2014 committees: “The highlight for me has been the significant progress we’ve made on what last year's NomCom started. I think that we have improved the application process for candidates, and we are working to give the community an even better opportunity to get to know the candidates prior to elections.”
The NomCom is continuing to work on ranking methods for future elections and streamlining the overall elections process even more. These items will be reviewed post-election so that the NomCom can get a better idea of what can be improved. The current ranking methods will remain in place for this year’s elections, and as in the past, all applicants’ rankings will be posted to the public unless they opt out.
“We’ve identified some tweaks that I think will be good for candidates and voters,” noted NomCom member Andy Warren, “and we know that we need to put more time into a document that explains the ‘why’ of parts of the process to future NomCom members. It’s also a lot of fun to work with a group that is serious, diverse, and open minded, so much so that I think when we finish the work of the NomCom, we should find another project to tackle!”
June 9, 2014 – A big thank you to everyone who made their voices heard in last week’s 2014 Nomination Committee (NomCom) elections. And congratulations to Erin Stellato, Andy Warren, and Allen Kinsel, the community representatives elected to join NomCom Chair Bill Graziano and Board-appointed representative Richard Bolesta on the committee to manage this year’s PASS Board of Directors election.
A total of 539 voters cast 1,537 votes in the NomCom elections, featuring a slate of 11 incredible candidates. To be eligible to vote in this year’s NomCom and Board elections, PASS members needed to update their PASS profile by June 1. The IT and Marketing teams analyzed the voting list for any duplication before sending out the NomCom elections ballot link to 9,086 eligible PASS voters.
The NomCom elections also saw the successful debut of PASS’s new online voting system. The secure and easy-to-use web-services-based Simply Voting system doesn’t hold any PASS member email addresses or passwords.
The NomCom community seats reflect the three seats up for election on the PASS Board this year: one US/Canada seat and two open seats. The five-member NomCom will manage the Board elections process, qualifying, interviewing, and ranking potential candidates. A final slate will then be submitted to the Board for approval. In addition, this year’s NomCom is charged with streamlining the process for involving and evaluating candidates and with enhancing opportunities for community engagement in the elections.
Applications will open August 6 for the three PASS Board seats up for election. To learn more about the 2014 NomCom election results and preview the upcoming Board of Directors elections, please see the Elections site. The discussion forums will be closed until the Board elections open, but if you have any questions or concerns, please contact PASS Governance.
Congratulations again to Erin, Andy, and Allen. And a special thank you to all the candidates for their dedicated volunteer efforts on behalf of the PASS community and their enthusiastic and professional candidacies in this year’s NomCom elections.
June 4, 2014 – Discussions around this year’s Nomination Committee (NomCom) elections have raised some questions about global representation on the NomCom. The three community seats on the five-member NomCom match the three seats up for election on the PASS Board of Directors. Here’s a quick summary of where we are in the process of increasing international representation and participation in PASS leadership via regional seats and how that relates to this year’s NomCom and Board elections.
Last year, the PASS Board approved bylaw changes that allowed the transition of its formerly all open seats to a mix of open seats and regionally-reserved seats, paving the way for more international perspectives and representation on the Board. The bylaw changes also set the NomCom to mirror the composition of Board seats up for election in any given year. The Board began this transition by adding two regional seats for the 2014/2015 term: one US/Canada seat (won by Tim Ford in the 2013 Board elections) and one EMEA seat (won by Jen Stirrup).
The bylaws call for a total of two regional seats representing the US/Canada, one each to be up for election annually, so this year defines that second US/Canada seat on the Board. Thus, for the 2014 NomCom and Board elections, community members are voting to fill one US/Canada regional seat and two open seats. Going forward, at least one US/Canada and one open seat will be up for election each year, with the EMEA regional seat up for election every other year. You can review the process for awarding PASS NomCom and Board seats here.
The Board has been diligently working on the next steps for adding other regional seats to promote greater global perspective and representation. We will be sharing this with the PASS community in the coming weeks. As the Board grows globally via regional seats so will the NomCom.
The transition to additional regional seats is an important process, but I want to remind dedicated volunteers and prospective candidates outside of US/Canada and EMEA that you don’t have to wait until a seat is added for your region. As always, candidates from any region are eligible to run for open seats on the PASS NomCom and Board of Directors, and we encourage you to do so.
Good luck to all our NomCom candidates during this week’s election and to all those thinking about running for the PASS Board later this year. Watch Friday afternoon for announcement of the full NomCom – including this year’s Board-appointed member – after the Board approves the final election results and appointee nomination. And please let us know if you have any questions.
– Bill Graziano
Immediate Past President/NomCom Chair
May 28, 2014 – It’s your turn! The candidate slate has been finalized and voting opens Tuesday, June 3, for three community seats on the 2014 PASS Nomination Committee (NomCom), which will manage the Board of Directors election. Your 2014 NomCom candidates are:
- Allen Kinsel - US/Canada & Open
- Andy Warren - US/Canada & Open
- Angela Henry - US/Canada & Open
- Brandon Leach - US/Canada & Open
- Chris Testa-O'Neill - Open
- Erin Stellato - US/Canada & Open
- Kendal Van Dyke - US/Canada & Open
- Mark Broadbent - Open
- Ryan Adams - US/Canada & Open
- Steve Wake - US/Canada & Open
- Tamera Clark - US/Canada & Open
The community representatives will reflect the three seats up for election on the PASS Board this year: one US/Canada seat and two open seats. Immediate Past President Bill Graziano will chair the NomCom, a five-member committee that manages the PASS Board of Directors elections process, qualifying, interviewing, and ranking potential candidates. A final slate is then submitted to the Board for approval. In addition, this year’s NomCom is charged with streamlining the process for involving and evaluating candidates and with enhancing opportunities for community engagement in the elections. A representative appointed by the PASS Board will round out the committee.
NomCom campaigning will begin June 2 – watch the Elections site to learn more about the candidates. Secure, individualized ballots will be emailed June 3 to all PASS members who have updated their profile by June 1. All ballots must be submitted by noon PT on June 6.
Thanks in advance for participating in the NomCom elections and the running of your organization – and good luck to all 11 candidates who applied for this important role!
May 14, 2014 – Are you a dedicated PASS volunteer with a passion for improving our community? Then you’re eligible to apply for three community seats up for election on this year’s Nomination Committee (NomCom), which will oversee the 2014 PASS Board of Directors elections.
The call for NomCom applications is open now through noon PT May 22.
What Is the NomCom?
The NomCom is a five-member committee that manages the PASS Board of Directors elections process, qualifying, interviewing, and ranking potential candidates. A final slate is then submitted to the Board for approval. In addition, this year’s NomCom is charged with streamlining the process for involving and evaluating candidates and with enhancing opportunities for community engagement in the elections.
Immediate Past President Bill Graziano will chair this year’s NomCom, which will include three elected community representatives reflecting the three seats up for election on the PASS Board this year: one US/Canada seat and two open seats. A representative appointed by the PASS Board will round out the committee.
Who’s Eligible to Run?
To be eligible to run for the NomCom, candidates must have a demonstrable track record of volunteering with PASS – such as serving as a Regional Mentor, Chapter or Virtual Chapter Leader, or Program Committee member – and participating in other volunteer endeavors. Note that as an essential part of the PASS Board elections process, the NomCom requires significant time and effort. By applying for the NomCom, applicants agree to the time commitments of the entire general elections process, including Board applicant interviews.
Thinking about running? See what recent committee members have to say about serving on the NomCom.
Get Started Today!
If you meet the eligibility requirements and are interested in serving on the NomCom, please download the application for full details and submit your completed form to firstname.lastname@example.org by 12:00pm PT / 19:00 GMT May 22. Successful candidates will be notified by May 27.
NomCom elections will run June 3-6, with all PASS members who have updated their profile as of June 1, 2014, eligible to vote. Good luck and thanks in advance to all applicants!
April 29, 2014 – The call for PASS Nomination Committee applications opens in just two weeks. Thinking about throwing your hat into the elections ring for this year’s three community NomCom seats? Here’s some information to help you get ready.
The NomCom manages the PASS Board of Directors elections process, qualifying, interviewing, and ranking potential candidates. A final slate is then submitted to the Board for approval. In addition, this year’s NomCom is charged with streamlining the process for involving and evaluating candidates and with enhancing opportunities for community engagement in the elections.
Immediate Past President Bill Graziano will chair the five-member NomCom, which will include three elected community representatives reflecting the three seats up for election on the PASS Board this year: one US/Canada seat and two open seats. A representative appointed by the PASS Board will round out the committee.
To be eligible to run for the NomCom, candidates must have a demonstrable track record of volunteering with PASS – such as serving as a Regional Mentor, Chapter or Virtual Chapter Leader, or Program Committee member – and participating in other volunteer endeavors. Note that as an essential part of the PASS Board elections process, the NomCom requires significant time and effort. By applying for the NomCom, applicants agree to the time commitments of the entire general election process, including Board applicant interviews.
Thinking of running?
“There is no better way to contribute to the health of the PASS community than serving on the NomCom,” notes PASS Regional Mentor Ryan Adams, who served on last year’s committee. “You are vetting the future directors of the organization, who will provide strategic guidance, long-term growth, and stability to the community we love. It’s not just an opportunity to interview and ensure solid and motivated candidates for the community, it’s also a responsibility that has immense rewards.”
Fellow 2013 NomCom member Erin Stellato adds that serving the SQL Server community through the NomCom is about more than giving back. “It's about having the opportunity to really get to know the community members who choose to run for the Board, and then taking that information and helping the greater community decide who the best people are for the job,” she says. “The NomCom also gives you the chance to better understand the PASS organization as a whole and starts the wheels turning about other ways you can make a difference.”
Remember that to be eligible to vote in the NomCom and PASS Board elections, members must update their PASS profile by June 1. Whether you join the conversation about how to improve the organization, support your favorite candidates and vote, or run for office yourself, please get involved and help shape the future of PASS.
For more information about PASS’s elections process and running for the NomCom, contact PASS HQ Governance Administrator Janice Simpson.
April 1, 2014 – Mark your calendar: An early Nomination Committee (NomCom) process will kick off this year’s PASS elections season, with applications opening in May for three community seats on the team that will manage the Board of Directors elections. The 2014 NomCom will also be working to streamline and improve our elections process for candidates and members alike.
As Immediate Past President, I’ll be chairing the five-member NomCom, which includes three elected community representatives who will reflect the three seats up for election on the PASS Board this year: one US/Canada seat and two open seats. A representative appointed by the PASS Board will round out the committee.
In addition to managing the Board elections, this year’s NomCom is charged with streamlining the process for involving and evaluating candidates and with enhancing opportunities for community engagement in the elections.
To give us time to discuss and implement any changes, the NomCom elections season will occur earlier this year, with NomCom applications opening May 14 and elections running June 3-6. Once seated, the NomCom will meet regularly from June 9-July 25 before Board applications open in early August and will participate in candidate interviews from August 27 to September 12.
To be eligible to run for the NomCom, candidates must have a demonstrable track record of volunteering with PASS – such as serving as a Regional Mentor, Chapter or Virtual Chapter Leader, or Program Committee member – and participating in other volunteer endeavors. Note that as an essential part of the PASS Board elections process, the NomCom requires significant time and effort.
Remember that to be eligible to vote in the NomCom and PASS Board elections, members must update their PASS profile by June 1, 2014. Many of you have already completed your myProfile information, which helps PASS better serve your interests and allows us to do our due diligence in ensuring that eligible voters receive only one ballot. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to update your myProfile today!
Serving on the NomCom is one of the most rewarding ways to give back to the PASS community and be involved in helping shape the future of our organization. Have questions about what’s involved in running for and serving on the PASS NomCom? Don’t hesitate to reach out to me or PASS HQ Governance Administrator Janice Simpson.
– Bill Graziano
Immediate Past President/NomCom Chair
January 7, 2014 – The 2013 elections cycle highlighted some issues with how ballots are generated for the annual PASS Board of Directors elections. Historically, all PASS members – identified as those for whom we have a unique email address – have been eligible to vote. Under this broad definition, however, it is common for members to have multiple unique email addresses in the system and to thus receive multiple ballots.
In an effort to reduce the number of duplicate ballots sent out, the PASS Board has established more specific eligibility requirements for voting. In a recent meeting, the Board agreed that to receive a ballot, members must have a completed PASS profile.
PASS has added new fields to the myProfile section of sqlpass.org to help us better serve the community. The additional information will also help us de-dupe member data for eligible voters before sending ballots. As part of a new membership drive, we are encouraging all members to update or fill out their profiles and review them for completeness and accuracy.
All members who complete their profiles – including the new fields – by June 1, 2014, will receive a ballot to vote in the PASS elections, with one caveat: All completed profiles will be checked for duplication, and those identified as duplicate will be eliminated from the ballot send out.
Looking forward to your feedback on this change in voter eligibility, and please complete or set up your profile as soon as you can!
Immediate Past President
All current PASS Board members were on stage to help answer questions from the community. Here’s a quick recap of the top three questions and answers:
Q: There are concerns in the community that duplicate votes occurred in the recent PASS Board elections. How did PASS review the votes, and how did this affect the election results?
A: The election results remain unchanged even when taking duplicates into account. Eligible voters were determined by unique email address and date entered into the system. All submitted ballots were compared to registration lists for paid PASS events. Duplicate ballots were discovered based on first name, last name, and address. Ballots were also compared to our membership data (people who fill in the member profile on sqlpass.org), and additional duplicates were uncovered based on identical first and last name and identical voting pattern.
Q: What are PASS’s plans to host another Summit event outside of the Seattle area?
A: This Summit in Charlotte, NC, is the first time we’ve been out of Seattle since 2007! It has been a great success, but we are going to spend some time analyzing the pros and cons of hosting outside of Seattle before we decide to move to different locations. Booking facilities for events of this size happens years in advance, and we are booked in the Seattle area for the next 3 years.
Q: There was some confusion among PASS Chapter leaders about how to reach out to local SQLSaturday event registrants.
A: Any Chapter Leader involved in organizing a SQLSaturday event may use the SQLSaturday sponsor opt-in list to append registrant contact information to their Chapter email list.