Two years ago, I was recognized as a Microsoft MVP for the first time. This past Sunday morning, I received my third MVP award. Since the award lasts for exactly one year, I wake up every July 1 with a sense of hope and dread.
I often joke that I receive the award because of a glitch in the selection software, but the official word from Dora Chan, my MVP Lead is that the award is given for "technical expertise, community leadership, and voluntary community contributions"
I find it difficult to apply that definition to my community efforts, so I always think of it as people with knowledge of Microsoft technologies who take the time and effort to share that knowledge with others. In other words, it's not necessarily the smartest people or those with the deepest knowledge who win the award; rather it’s those with a solid understanding who are spreading this understanding throughout the development community. This definition works well for me because, although there are many people with deeper knowledge of the software than me, I have experience with a wide range of development tools on the Microsoft stack. More important, I always enjoy sharing that knowledge with others - whether it's through user groups, conferences, blog posts, articles, books, or general interactions with developers.
For me, the best pats of the award are public acknowledgement from people I respect; and a chance to go to the MVP Summit in February. The MVP Summit is a treat for me because I often find myself in a room filled with people smarter than me.
I'm grateful to Microsoft for this award and I'm grateful for Telerik, who provides some financial support, without which I could not afford to travel to as many conferences. I'm also grateful to Sogeti, for allowing me to occasionally take time away from my day-to-day responsibilities.
It is a blessing to receive recognition for something that I would be doing anyway.