At 1:00am this past Saturday (25th June 2016), my phone starts buzzing quite frantically. Usually no one wants to experience this, as it never tends to be good news. Thankfully, this was not the case for me. Instead, my phone was going mad due to a number of mail notifications, tweets and Skype messages I was receiving in a very short span of time.
At first glimpse of my phone, I’m reading messages like “Awesome John“, “Congratulations!!!“, and so on. I open up my mailbox and low and behold:
Congratulations! You are a 2016-2017 IBM Champion for Cloud
This definitely sits as one of the preferred ways to be woken up so early in the morning. I just want to take a moment and extend my deepest thanks to all those who nominated me. I am truly humbled and forever appreciate your support in my cause.
I want to thank IBM for granting me the opportunity to be a part of this program. I am deeply honoured! I know the title is given for work done in the past, but I must say that in many ways, for me personally, I’ve only just begun with what I plan to do and share when it comes to Cloud and I look forward to holding the title high and living up to its name.
Almost done 😎: To my beautiful wife for always understanding the time and effort it takes to play the roles that I play both at work and via these kind of community programs. Thank you so much for your patience. I love you to bits!!!
The Ukuvuma Team: Thank you all for celebrating my successes and cheering me on as I do my best to keep up the Ukuvuma name. I am proud to be a part of this team and look forward to our next challenges.
Finally, a big congratulations to the other 24 IBM Champions for Cloud. I know of Mark Roden and Bruce Elgort being a part of this program, great friends of mine 💪, but to be honest I’m not sure who else was chosen. I haven’t seen an official announcement from IBM, which I assume might come out today. In any event, whoever you are…congratulations and thank you for blogging, teaching, socialising and mentoring in this Cloud space 🙏.
The IBM Champion Program
For those who are not aware, this is just a short overview of the IBM Champion Program and why myself and 24 others were blessed to receive this title:
The IBM Champion program recognizes innovative thought leaders in the technical community—and rewards these contributors by amplifying their voice and increasing their sphere of influence. The IBM Champion program is an exclusive group of IT professionals, developers, and business leaders external to IBM who are passionate about IBM’s software, solutions, and services and who demonstrate extraordinary advocacy through sharing their knowledge and expertise and supporting others.