OpenStack Summit Panel Session: Building a Career in OpenStack

Today is the wind down day for the OpenStack Summit in Paris. The Kilo Design Summit will keep going at some other venues, but we have the expo floor closing up which marks the completion of the presentations and panel sessions for the event.

In the Atlanta summit earlier this year I was lucky enough to be on a panel session which talked about building a cloud career in OpenStack. The panel featured a great group of folks including Kenneth Hui, Aaron Delp, Jason Grimm, and moderated by Niki Acosta. You can see the original Atlanta session on my Media page (

This time, we reprised our group in Paris for another discussion and the fun part was that many changes have happened for us since the spring. Over the course of the last few months Kenneth Hui moved to EMC, I moved to Turbonomic, Aaron Delp has extended his responsibilities in SolidFire, Niki has moved to Metacloud which was then acquired by Cisco, and we added two new panelists with Ryan Yard of Rackspace, and Shamail Tahir. Jason was unable to come to the event unfortunately so we missed him this time around.

Jobs, Skills, and Open Source in General

The theme of this is obviously around career building. We discussed the skills that each of us on the panel have sought out in order to grow our careers related to OpenStack, and what we see in the industry for others seeking work. Some great questions came in from the audience and to Niki before the session, so we talked to recruiters about how to look for skills, plus to job seekers to give some ideas as to how we each made changes to adapt.

A great conversation started around how people can ask their company to contribute to open source projects. This created some good back and forth around the legalities, and some good tips to begin the process of starting or contributing to open source projects. I was really pleased to have a chance to chat with people after the session too. It is great to connect with new people and hopefully share experiences to help bring them closer to their goal.

Here is the video of the session which is hosted at the OpenStack Foundation YouTube channel (which is filled with awesomeness by the way!)

We are aiming to continue the trend and present our panel discussion for the Kilo Summit in Vancouver which is May 18-22, 2015. Along with that panel, I will have lots of speaking sessions proposed which will give me a chance to dive even deeper into giving back to the great OpenStack community that has helped me to expand my knowledge and my personal network.

If you have any questions, feel free to connect on Twitter and let me know!

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