#LOPSA-Live, June 21, 2017 (part 1)

21 Jun 2017 8:40 PM | Anonymous member

Once again, my apologies for having to split the posts. I believe I can manage it with just two posts this time. This was lightly edited to remove some of the noise from the transcript

JUNE 21 CANDIDATE Q&A

#LOPSA-Live 2017-06-21

Trev71 Good evening everyone, just wrapping up some preliminary discussions on the back end, started in a moment.
Trev71 We will give it a couple more mins to allow for those running a couple mins late.
Trev71 But just a couple quick minutes.. we won't stretch it out.
Trev71 ok - so, I was typing in the wrong channel... great moderation!
Trev71 So then, Good Evening everyone, my name is Trev Thorpe, on the Leadership Committee and will be working to moderate this event tonight.
Trev71 Just to make sure we are all on the same page, the candidates are:
Trev71 - Drew Adams
Trev71 - Andy Cowell
Trev71 - Andree Jacobson
Trev71 - Aleksey Tsalolikhin
Trev71 - Danielle White
Trev71 They can introduce themselves in order, first up is Drew
Trev71 -- please forward any and all questions you would like asked to the candidates to aluck (Adam) he will queue questions up and we will get to them post introductions.
atsaloli Hi. Candidate Aleksey Tsalolikhin here.
Trev71 Welcome, thanks for coming.
atsaloli =)
Trev71 Drew is typing up his intro to the group, and you will fall in after Andree..
atsaloli ok
NMSwede Alright
druonysus I am Drew Adams. I am "Sr. DevOps Engineer", for whatever that title is worth. I work a lot with Salt, Docker, and Kubernetes. I am a long time openSUSE Member and Advocate. I organize and work the openSUSE booth at the Southern California Linux Expo every year (since 2012). I have also been involved with the Salt community since late 2011/early 2012 and have given 2 talks at SaltConf.
Trev71 Thanks !
Trev71 Andy?
vt102 Hi, I'm Andy Cowell.  I've been in system administration since the mid-'90s, and my claim to fame is that I hosted Metallica.com when Metallica sued Napster.  Which was "fun."
vt102 I have served in a lot of technical roles— developer, network, storage, virtualization, and cloud, for some of the largest sites on the Internet, such as Dilbert.com and HGTV.com.
vt102 For the past few years, I have managed a team of sysadmins who have transitioned into cloud engineers.  I have been an active and enthusiastic member of my local LOPSA chapter since 2012, where I have been in a leadership role for the last year.
vt102 EOF
Trev71 awesome, Andree ?
Trev71 -- And yes, please EOF us so that we know you are completed, I don't wish to cut you off.
NMSwede Andree Jacobson - Currently CIO @ New Mexico Consortium, a mid-size non-profit facilitating collaborations between Los Alamos National Lab and the universities in New Mexico. I've been in this role for the last 7 years, and also ran the NSF project called PRObE. We took machines (1000+ nodes) that LANL decommissioned and made them available to the research community nationally. I'm also a computer geek at heart, a
NMSwede nd I'm always doing something. Running a small consulting business on the side, mostly doing systems software for large scale computer installations. I'm managing a group of dedicated sysadmins that work hard to provide infrastructure for about 150 researchers working on various projects. EOF
atsaloli Aleksey Tsalolikhin:  sysadmin since mid 90's. Member of USENIX and SAGE and then LOPSA.  Organizer of LOPSA Los Angeles chapter.  Consulting sysadmin and trainer.  EOF
Trev71 Thank you Andree, Aleksey ? a brief intro please..
atsaloli I love LOPSA
Trev71 Got it, quick.
atsaloli =)
Trev71 And Danielle ?
ClothoMoirai Hello, by process of elimination I am Danielle White. I'm officially a senior sysadmin by title and for almost a year I have been in automation development work, largely Python and Ansible.
ClothoMoirai I have served as lead of a team of system administrators in software as a service work for a large business intelligence/business analytics company.
ClothoMoirai EOF
Trev71 ok - I have a couple of questions here, one moment and we will go again in the same order to keep things simple.
atsaloli ok
Trev71 Ok, so, question " What do you want to improve in LOPSA " from a member wishing to remain anonymous...
Trev71 Drew you are on the spot first again, next question I will change the order a bit :)
Trev71 Other candidates, to be clear, you all will have the chance to answer the same question.
atsaloli Got it
druonysus haha. @Trev71 thanks. Writing answer now. :D
druonysus Drew: I would love to improve the mind-share of people in the industry. I think LOPSA has a great reputation with those who know about the organization, but due to movements like the DevOps, there are a lot of people would benefit from system knowledge and a community and organization like LOPSA. Because they are not and never have been a sysadmin they may not know about LOPSA or think the org is not for them. I think we can make ourselves
druonysus more attractive to more of these people and grow to be a stronger community and organization.
druonysus END
Trev71 Thanks, Andy?
vt102 Andy Cowell:
vt102 I want to see more direct support of local chapters.  I'd like to see experienced presenters available to present remotely to smaller local chapters, who can perhaps choose speakers with topics of interest to that local community.
vt102 The direct interaction could be of great benefit to the attendees, and interesting topics with knowledgable speakers could help the local chapter grow.
vt102 Other opportunities will no doubt present themselves— perhaps we can help organize national coroporate sponsorship for local chapters?— but the primary value I have seen in my own LOPSA experience is the great personal contacts I have made through my local chapter.  I want to encourage that vibrant activity in other local chapters.
vt102 EOF
Trev71 Thanks Andy, Andree ?
NMSwede First, I think LOPSA is a great organization - I wouldn't aspire to be on the board if I didn't. That being said, as we discussed some in the last live session - we do have some issues with member numbers and retention. This is common with many organizations just like ours.
NMSwede However, I do think there are things that we can do to improve the number of members, specifically by targeting students, finding the appropriate programs (I know a few, I think we all do), and make sure that we get our info out there. The mentor program should be a great backbone to what we do - and I think we should highlight the successes of our members, etc.
NMSwede Also partnering with other focus groups, like the Machine Learning Society, and similar to help pull together local meet-ups and the like. EOL.
Trev71 Aleksey ?
atsaloli Aleksey Tsalolikhin: I want to reverse the trend of our membership statistics (i.e. get it going up again). Provide more services to the community (e.g. more chapters or more active chapters, more mentoring, and outreach to the public re the sysadmin career path). EOF
Trev71 And Danielle ?
ClothoMoirai My primary improvement areas for LOPSA are membership and conferences.
ClothoMoirai We need sustainable membership and I am certain there are professionals we can reach who are not presently members, particularly ones in roles that are more dev than ops but definitely include the latter.
ClothoMoirai Also there are organizations where LOPSA isn't known but those professonals are.
ClothoMoirai For conferences there are newer ones like All Things Open where we need a presence.
ClothoMoirai EOF
Trev71 Thank you!
Trev71 Next question, we will start with Andree, follow with Aleksey, Danielle, Drew and Andy
NMSwede got it
Trev71 And the question is, "The introductions are great -- but why do you want to be on the LOPSA board / how will you benefit LOPSA ?"
Trev71 Coming from member cat-xegar, well I should say IRC name cat-xegar.
NMSwede Typing...
Trev71 We could use more questions -- don't be shy, shoot them over to aluck please :)
NMSwede Computation, Computers, and all kinds of devices are constantly growing in use. We hear about it everywhere. Everyone is using them. And for the people that make these systems work, they get to essentially sit in the shadows.
NMSwede You don't hear about the great sysadmin at organization X that stopped something bad from happening. What I'm trying to say is that - we - as a group of professionals are severely under appreciated, and I think LOPSA is a fantastic way of getting the word out there.
Trev71 EOF ?
NMSwede And, it's also a great group for sharing information with, and learning from.
NMSwede EOF
NMSwede Sorry, didn't cut-paste that last one ;)
Trev71 Great thanks!  and I jump in too quick.. either way.. next up :)
atsaloli Aleksey Tsalolikhin: I am running for the board because LOPSA needs directors and I feel it is my duty to help my group.  I have a little executive experience (after working as a senior sysadmin I spent a year as Director of Operations; and I've been running my own (very small) company for a while (5 years part time and the last 3 years full time).  I will put my shoulder to the wheel and help as I can, if you'll have me.  =) I
atsaloli stability of modern and future civilization. Sysadmins are valuable and important. We need more of them! EOF
Trev71 Danielle ?
ClothoMoirai I want to see LOPSA become what I have long believed it can be: the premier organization for system administration.
ClothoMoirai I will be direct here that I had somewhat drifted away from it in recent years.
ClothoMoirai I began to be involved with local chapters of groups like Girl Develop it and Women Who Code and saw that there were people in those groups who were asking professional questions related to system administration and needed guidance.
ClothoMoirai But they haven't heard about LOPSA and need it. I am involved because I want to guide LOPSA to have those members.
ClothoMoirai EOF
Trev71 Drew?
druonysus Drew: I have an interesting background. I was a sales person for may years. Before moving to technology I used my sales skills as a recruiter of sorts. Now that I work full time leveraging my technology skills I have been contributing my sales/marketing and recruiting skills to build a strong local Southern California openSUSE community. Since 2012, I went from being the only known active openSUSE community member  to building a strong
druonysus community out here. I love LOPSA and I think one of the things we are in need is stronger local communities. I want to get more people engaged and having fun learning and growing together as soon as they join LOPSA. I think my experience in sales/marketing, and recruiting can help in this and my track record with openSUSE shows I know how to build strong communities that stick.
druonysus END
Trev71 Andy ?
vt102 LOPSA was my first foray into a professional organization, and I have found it to be personally quite valuable.  There are the obvious benefits, such as learning new technologies and even public speaking as I presented at least one talk a year.  But I also developed friendships, too.
vt102 I want to help other people find the same value.  That is 100% my reason for running.
vt102 I believe our industry is in some turmoil.  There's almost a "Cambrian Explosion" as new roles such as DevOps, SRE, cloud engineers, and who knows what next have evolved from traditional system, network, and storage administration.
vt102 I believe all these roles— let's call them "Operations"— belong in LOPSA.  I personally have journeyed this path, have presented my experiences and learnings back to my local chapter, and have professionally led others through these transitions.
vt102 I hope these experiences will allow me to keep LOPSA a "big tent" with every form of Operations involved, a great source of all Operations knowledge, and each of us picking and choosing the best parts of others' experiences as needed.
vt102 EOF
Trev71 Ok then... thanks for those answers...
Trev71 Next question round will begin with Danielle White followed by Drew, Andy, Andree and Aleksey...
Trev71 Next question, incoming...
Trev71 "Your responses seem to provide a lot of opportunities for more senior people to provide things to LOPSA -- what does LOPSA provide to them?"
Trev71 And again, to Danielle first...  
Trev71 And your questions, please shoot over to aluck (adam) for queuing up...  
ClothoMoirai I'm reminded of the statement of a LOPSA member (and my apologies for being unable to remember the name of whomever said it,) "If you don't plan do change plan to be unemployed in five years."
ClothoMoirai In my own work as a senior system administrator I found that I needed resources I hadn't imagined previously. A great example was for mentoring my junior team members. LOPSA did offer me resources to begin that and I continued a lot on my own.
ClothoMoirai EOF
vt102 typing...
Trev71 thank you, Drew ?
vt102 (sorry)
Trev71 Take your time Drew...  
Trev71 Andy, Andree, Aleksey is the order once Drew answers..  
atsaloli ok
druonysus Human connection, a sense of contribution and fulfillment. Passing on knowledge and context to the next germination of professionals.
druonysus And honestly, I think the opportunities I see are for all. I think that people that learners can be teacher. Just-in-time learning is key to success in most specialties. Teaching helps solidify what you know and is good for all. There is no throne of knowledge that those who have been doing this for a while. We may have experience, but not a throne of knowledge.  I talk to a lot of people just starting out and they seem to think they need
druonysus to build themselves that throne to get a job. When they find out they don't need that, they need to be willing to learn… it is very empowering. I think LOPSA has something to offer to all.
druonysus END
Trev71 Thank you Drew, Andy.. you are up
vt102 I was already senior when I started attending my local chapter.  I went purely for the purpose of personal networking, and it has delivered in spades.  I have met people in other roles, other companies, and with differing experiences that I would never had met without LOPSA.
vt102 t also gives me a chance to give back.  I care about the profession, and I have been able to give my knowledge back to not just junior professionals, but senior professional in other niches that may never cross my own.  
vt102 But we can share knowledge with each other and both come away better for the experience.
vt102 FWIW, I don't we should attract senior people who are wholly selfish in motivation.  Likewise, participating in LOPSA shouldn't be all give and no take for anyone.
vt102 EOF
Trev71 Andree ?
NMSwede We can never stop learning, and as we grow in our professional roles - we do need support too. I started out as the only sysadmin in our organization when it was small. Love the tech stuff, got lots of stuff done, but organization grew, more people came onboard, and I became the manager. No training, but best of intentions - now I manage more than I do direct sysadmin stuff, my job is logistics mostly.
NMSwede However, still gotta stay on top of things, but I do want to share with other in the same boat. That's hard to get without senior members who's gone through it, or decided not to go down that path.
NMSwede Whether you consider this opportunity a benefit for the more senior members or not, is something you will have to decide on your own, but for me - it's valuable.
NMSwede EOF
Trev71 Thanks Andree..
Trev71 Aleksey ?
atsaloli Aleksey Tsalolikhin: I know what LOPSA has provided for me -- community and comradeship and no BS technical help and advice  when I needed it from people who have been there and done that. An opportunity to increase my contribution to society (e.g. by teaching at LOPSA University at Ohio Linux Fest, now Ohio Linux Fest Institute; and
atsaloli SCALE University; CasITConf and LOPSA EAST). Opportunity to mentor and be mentored (Tom Limoncelli mentored  me on submitting technical book proposals -- that was awesome!)  
atsaloli I've made many friends through LOPSA.  
atsaloli I got to work with the LOPSA Professional Content Committee compiling the Guide to the Sysadmin Body of Knowledge (www.sabok.org) reading list.
atsaloli I was delighted to receive a LOPSA challenge coin at the last Annual Community Meeting, and to be awarded Mentor of the Year in 2011.  That felt incredible. I try to contribute a lot to LOPSA and I feel I have received so much in return -- truly in abundance!
atsaloli LOPSA allows me to help -- we helped a bright local LA chapter junior member get a job at Amazon. etc.  Life changing stuff!
atsaloli I propose that what you get out of LOPSA is related to what you put into it.  =)
atsaloli EOF
Trev71 ok thank you for those answers...  


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