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Clifton’s Strengths Finder Top Five Strengths: 

Competition – Relator – Significance – Analytical – Harmony

Bio

I am a Microsoft Certified Master, a SQL Server MVP, a VMWare vExpert, and a Microsoft Certified Trainer. I have over 15 years experience in the IT industry in various roles such as programmer, developer, analyst, and database administration.

I am the author of DBA Survivor: Become a Rock Star DBA. The book is designed to give a junior to mid-level DBA a better understanding of what skills are needed in order to survive (and thrive) in their career. I have also participated in the technical review of several other books including Pro SQL Server 2008 Policy-Based ManagementSecuring SQL Server: Protecting Your Database from Attackers, and Pro SQL Database for Windows Azure: SQL Server in the Cloud.

In my role as Head Geek for SolarWinds my mission is to give IT and Data Professionals longer weekends.

I accomplish this by serving as a “Customer Doppleganger”. I solicit feedback from existing customers and industry experts then use that information to help our team create better products. My research and experience helped to create the initial versions of IgniteVM, now known as Database Performance Analyzer with the VM option, an industry recognized leading database performance monitoring tool. I work with a variety of customers to help solve questions regarding database performance tuning and virtualization for SQL Server, Oracle, Sybase, and DB2.

Head Geeks are also responsible for content creation. The variety of content includes blog posts, webinars, videos, conference presentations, magazine articles, whitepapers, and books. This content allows for Head Geeks to help with product positioning and overall strategy.

The combination of research, content creation, and professional experience allows for Head Geeks to be recognized as thought leaders for their industry.

I also serve on the Board of Directors for the Professional Association for SQL Server, an independent, not-for-profit association, dedicated to supporting, educating, and promoting the global Microsoft SQL Server community.

Professional Experience

Head Geek
Solarwinds, Inc.
April 2014 to present

  • Create amazing content in a variety of forms that include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • Blog posts
    • Webinars
    • Videos
    • Interviews
    • Conference presentations
    • Magazine articles
    • Whitepapers
    • Books
  • Collaborate with marketing teams on various campaigns designed to increase Solarwinds reach
  • Evangelize Solarwinds in the marketplace through a variety of media channels
  • Drive early adoption to make product rollouts stronger
  • Foster a sense of community for Solarwinds users by focusing on customer satisfaction
  • Actively participate in online communities such as thwack and DBA Stack Exchange
  • Provide both internal and external SQL Server training
  • Travel as necessary

Check http://www.solarwinds.com for more details on Solarwinds.

Technical Evangelist
Confio Software
June 2010 to April 2014

In October of 2013, Confio was purchased by Solarwinds, and in April of 2014 I officially transitioned over.

  • Worked with Director of Marketing on various marketing campaigns designed to increase Confio’s reach
  • Evangelize Confio in the marketplace via e-seminar presentations, white paper authorship, conference speaking, and user group volunteerism.
  • Technical sales support of customers and prospects to ensure success during pre-sales efforts
  • Consultation on database performance problems and solutions using Confio products
  • Creation and delivery of demonstrations to highlight benefits of Confio products
  • Informal training of customers on use of Confio products
  • Support and resolution of installed prospect and customer issues
  • Traveled as necessary

President
Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS)
January 2009 to Present

  • Vice-President, Marketing, 2012-13
  • Along with the Board of Directors, set the strategy and direction for PASS.
  • Assist with the execution of strategy as set forth by the Board of Directors.
  • Responsible for direction and leadership of the PASS Virtual Chapters, a collection of virtual communities spread throughout the world.
  • Assist with the growth of the PASS Community Summit, PASS Chapters, and PASS membership.
  • Build and manage relationships with members of the SQL community, including vendors.
  • Lead and manage groups of volunteers to assist in execution of PASS mission.

Check http://www.sqlpass.org for more details on the association.

 

Member, SQL Server Customer Advisory Board
Quest Software
Aliso Viejo, CA
June 2008 to June 2010

  • Participate in roundtable discussions regarding future direction for Quest products.
  • Assist in the design of Quest products through group collaboration.
  • Test and provide feedback for Alpha software releases.
  • Assist in building a SQL community through participation at SQLServerPedia.

 

Database Administration Manager
ING Investment Management
May 2001 to June 2010

Currently lead a team of seven (7) individuals supporting over one hundred fifty (150) database instances that are used by in-house and third party applications. Major involvements were administering production, test, and development servers, optimizing queries for better performance, design and development of in-house monitoring solution for database servers, developing operational standards, and documentation of policies and procedures. Participated in Six Sigma Black Belt training, learning valuable project management skills. Other duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Initiated and led weekly meetings to share knowledge with team members and to overcome technical hurdles as they arose pertaining to Microsoft SQL Server and server performance issues.
  • Led the database server consolidation subproject as part of overall server consolidation efforts.
  • Created databases, tables, stored procedures, triggers, indices, foreign keys and any other objects within the databases based on requirements from Developers.
  • Guaranteed that Daily/Weekly/Monthly backups are running, and also ensure databases that had transactional backups for 24×7 support were operating properly.
  • Designed and developed Sharepoint portal for team members to exchange information regarding procedures and troubleshooting documentation.
  • Provided non-stop production support for a 24×7 environment across all sites.
  • Performed database restore, refresh, and recover activities as needed.
  • Initial installation and configuration of MSSQL 2000, 2005, 2008, and Sybase ASE 12.5 instances.
  • Administration of Sybase ASE 12.0 and 12.5 server instances for UNIX and Windows NT platforms.
  • Administration of security model for all applicable endpoints (users, databases, applications).
  • Migrated Sybase databases to Microsoft SQL Server 2000 databases.
  • Performance and tuning of Microsoft SQL Server instances.
  • Administration of Crystal Enterprise and SQL Server Report Services (SSRS).
  • Administration of Active Directory local resource security groups.

Programmer/Analyst
AllPoints, Inc.
January 2000 to April 2001

Duties included the reviewing, analyzing, and modifying programming systems including encoding, testing, debugging and installing products to support the organization’s application systems; consulted with users to identify current operating procedures and to clarify program objectives; developed a strong knowledge of relational databases and client-server concepts; and relied on experience and judgment to plan and accomplish goals

  • Modified and maintained the AllPoints application using PowerBuilder 6.5.
  • Interacted with Oracle 8/8i database instances, writing stored procedures and triggers.
  • Used Oracle applications such as Instance Manager, Schema Manager, and Security Manager.
  • Was responsible for the building of the AllPoints application executable.
  • Created and maintained schemas for all team wide database projects using ERwin.
  • Delivered releases to, and interacted with, clients on-site.
  • Created new reports using PowerBuilder 6.5.
  • Used MKS for source integrity.
  • Tested my own code for functionality and limits.
  • Produced end user and development documentation.
  • Verified the technical accuracy of documentation.
  • Wrote new PL/SQL code to resolve specific problems.

Software Engineer
Logica, Inc.
June 1998 to January 2000

Duties included the creation and maintenance of quality code according to design specifications; assisted senior team members with function design; learned and adhered to all project standards, procedures, guidelines, and methodologies when designing functions, creating code, performing testing, and creating documentation; increased technical knowledge, especially in the areas of client/server techniques, software development methodologies, and the software lifecycle, through internal and external professional development.

  • Created and modified application code according to design specifications.
  • Interacted with Oracle 6 database instances, mostly through SQL Plus.
  • Verified the technical accuracy of documentation.
  • Worked closely with the Clarify DBA to propose schema changes.
  • Performed analysis of the business flow documentation.
  • Used PVCS and MKS for source integrity.
  • Tested code for functionality and limits.
  • Created technical documentation for work activities, including training of associates.
  • Verified the technical accuracy of documentation.
  • Undertook function design.
  • Interacted with an Informix database through SQL and writing stored procedures.
  • Created new reports.
  • Produced end user documentation.
  • Tested problem fixes.

Contacting Me

If you would like a copy of my resume, suitable for framing, drop me a line at sqlrockstar@thomaslarock.com. I am not in the market but I can pass your request along to my social network. However, I do ask that you disclose the salary range for any position you ask me to forward. I do not want to waste anyone’s time and ask that you show the same respect. Thanks in advance.

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One Comment

  1. Training Opportunities at PASS Summit 2013 - Register Now! - SQL Server Team Blog - Site Home - TechNet Blogs
    Aug 27, 2013 @ 12:00:21

    […] Currently, Thomas is a Technical Evangelist for Confio Software. This role allows for him to work with a variety of customers to help solve questions regarding database performance tuning and virtualization. Thomas also serves on the Board of Directors for PASS as Vice President of Marketing. You can find out more information about him at his blog: http://thomaslarock.com/resume/. […]

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