With 4 children at home (all girls 11 yrs. To 6 months) and a 17 year old son, I don't seem to get as much free time to be active in the local development community like I used to. After working all day, dinner with the family, and the logistics of homework/housework/etc., when I do finally sit down in front of the computer (usually around 11:30 PM) it is very tempting to turn it off and just go to bed. But when I hesitate to sit down and write a blog post, investigate a new technology, or participate in a local community event, the people listed below are the ones I think about to inspire me to stay involved. This list below reflects people I interact with regularly either in person or online that serve as an example for involvement in the developer community. I think it only right that I pay them a little homage:
Brian Prince - Brian is the Microsoft Architect Evangelist for my region and is always willing to help out with our local community events. He is also very helpful to me personally whenever I ping him for assistance. I have seen him take personal interest in more junior members of our local community and encourage them to become involved when sometimes these people are left out.
Elijah manor - Elijah a prolific blogger and tweeter. I know he is very involved in his family and church and where he finds the time to do this I have no idea. Almost every day I follow a link from one of his tweets and discover something knew.
Michael Neel - Mike is the .NET User Group leader in Knoxville and I have worked with him at several local and regional events. He is very passionate about the community and it seems he is always driving somewhere (usually a great distance and on his own dime) to participate in community events. He is the one who got me started on filling up my iPod with developer podcasts to listen to while I am in the car (that's an hour of knowledge every day).
Evan Hoff - Evan is always traveling to go to a developer conference or referring a new technology book to me. He seems to know just about everyone in the Agile/ALT.NET community. I guess it helps that he is single and has the time to be so deeply involved but I remember when I was younger and single I did not have the dedication for that level or effort.
Corey Haines - I met Corey at devLink 2008 and found his outlook very refreshing. He is very passionate about being the best developer he can be in any language. He recent endeavor to travel the region pair programming with people all over to learn more is something I would never have the guts to do.
There are more people and I apologize to those I did not mention.
Hey, Tommy! Thanks for the mention; I am incredibly flattered.
Don't be too sure that you wouldn't be brave enough to do a tour. I am going to be working hard over the next year to build up a support network for other people to take journeyman travels of their own, especially people who might not be as lucky as I am to have a network of people already established.
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