It's #SQLVacation Time in Baton Rouge
There are three more dates in my #SQLVacation this year after Baton Rouge. So, after a bit of vacation time in Gulf Shores, AL, were now at the half-way point for the excursion. While I knew that Baton Rouge was the state capital of Louisiana and a major petrochemical center, I had no idea it was also a functioning port, the northernmost on the mighty Mississippi river able to process the big Panamax cargo ships.
The historic Southern city has a diverse culture including immigrant Vietnamese and Hispanic communities, a wide-ranging art and music scene, and (of course) Louisiana State University. And from the scuttlebutt I hear from the SQL Server community, it is home to one of the best SQL Saturdays in the USA. THe local SQL Server community has been holding SQL Saturday events since the inception of the education program way back in 2009 and has been growing ever since. Way to go Baton Rouge!
#SQLVacation is Just in Time to Highlight the Upcoming SQL Saturday
Want some even better news? The next SQL Saturday is only a few weeks away! It features THIRTEEN tracks of educational sessions, plus content for career development and CIO- and management-centric panels and sessions.
Register now for SQL Saturday #515 | Baton Rouge 2016, Aug 06 at LSU College of Business!
The session list for SQLSat515 is just crazy! If you can't find a dozen sessions there that you'd like to attend, then I'm guessing you're unteachable.
Great Communities Need Great Servant Leaders Like Adrian Aucoin
I've been blessed to have been a part of the Professional Association for SQL Server since its founding. And one thing I can assure you of is that this organization would have floundered long ago if it weren't for the caliber of its volunteer leaders. These chapter leaders, committee volunteers, and team members follow the model of servant leadership, where the leaders put the needs of others first and helps their teams mature and perform as highly as possible. Kudos to Adrian and all of our chapter leaders!
Let's get to know Adrian a little better:
When did you begin your professional career? I began my career right out of college in 2005. I'm actually still working for the company that I hired on with right out of college. They have been amazing in letting me grow my own path and expand my career and the company's offerings as a result of it!
What’s a normal day at work like for you? Normal?!? What's that!? It's actually pretty cool. I normally get to deal with a pretty diverse set of issues. Some days, I'm writing T-SQL and PowerShell scripts, to integrating data from outside systems, to other days being on the road anywhere in the country training new clients on our applications, or even attending a trade show trying to expand our partnerships and client base. Never a boring day really.
When did you come to this area? I moved to Baton Rouge in 2005 after graduating from UL Lafayette right down the road. My wife was coming to law school here, so that made it a pretty easy choice. It didn't hurt that I had also coincidentally been contacted by my employer through career services. So we made the jump in July of 2005 and have been here ever since.
When and why did you decide to help as a volunteer leader? I am naturally the sort of guy who takes responsibilities and roles with whatever I'm interested in...just seems to be my lot in life. I started attending the user groups off and on probably in '08 or '09 or so. At the time, Patrick Leblanc was running the user group, then handed it over to William Assaf. Under William, I started wanting to become involved, so I started to help as a VP of the usergroup, assisting as much as I could with organizing our yearly SQL Saturday. About 2 years ago, William decided that being President was so beneficial from a networking and career exposure standpoint that we should make it a regular elected office, along with our other officer positions. I've been honored the last 2 years to win the president role and will continue to do my best to represent and provide for our local user group scene as long as they allow me!
What is the IT community like there? We are really lucky. In talking to other chapter organizers from around the country, we seem to be a little unique. We host our monthly meetings with local .Net user group, but we also openly invite all other user groups in the area to participate. This makes it a much nicer draw for sponsors and so forth and actually aids in growing the camaraderie of the entire community by bringing together Devs, DBAs, Sysadmins, you name it all together.
We receive a tremendous amount of support from the local companies who understand that the more they invest in the local user group community, the better it is for everyone because the talent pool just gets bigger and better and feeds itself with a positive feedback loop of support.
What do you like about your area? What would you recommend someone do there, if they came to town on their own #sqlvacation? My favorite part of this area is the outdoor opportunities available. [Ed - Louisiana is known as "the Sportsman's Paradise"]. Fishing and boating is big around here, plus you can always take a 1-hour drive down to New Orleans and experience all the excitement and entertainment it has to offer. If you've never been on a swamp or bayou tour, there are a few of those relatively close that are a neat experience for folks not from the area.
What do you and your family enjoy doing in the area? We enjoy spending time with neighbors and getting outside. During this time of year, we'll take the boat out quite a bit. And I personally am a big competitive shooter (well, the competitive part is debatable!). So if i'm not at work or home, I'm probably in the boat or at the range!
Enter the #SQLVacation Contest!
Share your vacation photos with the #SQLFamily community and on social media using the hashtag #SQLVacation! Also, don't forget to fill out the entry form at the contest page for additional chances to win more prizes.
Now until July 21st, earn entries in our #SQLVacation raffle by coming to one or more of the events on the speaking tour. Share your photos using the #SQLVacation hashtag to be entered to win a SQL Sentry messenger bag. The winner will be crowned on July 29th. User group attendees will receive exclusive SQL Vacation koozies too, while supplies last.
Kevin (@kekline) serves as Principal Program Manager at SentryOne. He is a founder and former president of PASS and the author of popular IT books like SQL in a Nutshell. Kevin is a renowned database expert, software industry veteran, Microsoft SQL Server MVP, and long-time blogger at SentryOne. As a noted leader in the SQL Server community, Kevin blogs about Microsoft Data Platform features and best practices, SQL Server trends, and professional development for data professionals.