I Like It When Things Don't Necessarily Go the Way I've Planned
That's not to say I like when things go wrong. I do appreciate though the fact that in life - particularly in software development - there is no such thing as 100% success. Applications, databases, interfaces; these things created by human beings for the sake of making life easier for many sometimes break causing trouble for the few who are tasked with fixing them. That is where I like to be: analyzing what could be root cause for performance pain points, and offering up solutions to those who have to make things better. Although I've been a Database Administrator for most of my career, I followed a winding path as a software user, developer, and server administrator.
Check Me Out
Though my rear-view mirror holds ghosts of many platforms and applications, my core strengths lie in supporting and training future peers in Microsoft SQL Server. Training is my true passion. Of particular interest is facilitating training that is not only informative - but fun. That is the way I learn, and I think that if you're not engaged in the fun of learning - if you make it dry or painful - you'll not succeed in getting your point across. Particularly when you are dealing with a topic as glamorous as relational database management systems.
I've spoken at conferences including SQL PASS Summit, SQLConnections, devLink, SQL Cruise, KalamazooX, and many SQL Saturdays and Microsoft SQL Server User Groups. My sessions appeal to a wide range of skill levels and consistently receive strong reviews. I put a great deal of effort into my presentations and I'm glad it shows.
Over the course of two years - far longer than I would have hoped or expected - I wrote my first book with Louis Davidson on the subject of Performance Tuning SQL Server using Dynamic Management Views. I've learned quite a bit from writing a book. First of all that writing a book is very, very, hard. Secondly, that writing a second book is the work of a person not in their right mind. (Note to self, change this wording after completing my next book.) When we were just starting my co-author commented to me, 'Wouldn't it be great if you wrote a book?' While in my deepest, darkest depths of writer's block he reminded me that he stated that in the past tense for a reason. No one enjoys writing a book but the feeling you get having written one, well that's another story. I am very proud of the outcome however and am still humbled to say, 'You can find my book on Amazon.'
In 2010 Brent Ozar and I started SQL Cruise, an innovative provider of training for Microsoft SQL Server and professional development topics... ON CRUISE SHIPS. Both of us realized that while we learned a great deal while attending conferences, training seminars, and the like, we learned even more from those we found ourselves socializing with at these events after hours. What better way to provide training and foster this passive learning than on a cruise ship? I'm now the sole owner of SQL Cruise and even though Brent is no longer involved in the planning and execution of the SQL Cruises he has continued to speak at these unique events. If you're interested in joining one of these events I invite you to visit the SQL Cruise site for complete details.
I've been the Primary SQL Server Database Administrator and Subject Matter Expert for Microsoft SQL Server at Spectrum Health since 1999, growing the SQL environment from its single server infancy to its bloated adolescence and now to a respectable and consolidated adulthood. I understand the issues facing today's DBA because I've lived it.