ISPA is Here!
Today marks the official launch of the International SharePoint Professionals Association (ISPA). This is an exciting project that I have been involved with for some time. Go to the ISPA web site and Bob Fox’s blog to get the official lowdown.
From my perspective, what excites me the most about this organization is the tremendous people that we have involved who all share a singular vision – to provide first-class support to SharePoint communities around the world. Sure, there are bigger and more well-known user group organizations (such as INETA and Culminis) but none of them focus exclusively on SharePoint. ISPA fills the gap where these groups leave off in order to give SharePoint professionals a single source for community-related information. Best of all, ISPA is organized and operated by SharePoint MVP’s and SharePoint professionals with a proven passion for community efforts.
My personal thanks to Bob Fox and Darrin Bishop for involving me in this process over a year ago. They have worked tirelessly to make this a reality despite many setbacks and several false starts. Also, thanks to their fellow board members, Chris Regan and Natalya Voskresenskaya; you may not know them quite as well as Bob or Darrin but I assure you they are both committed SharePointers who have put a lot of heart and soul into making this project a reality. And finally, my thanks to all of my fellow evangelists around the world (full list) who share my passion for the overall SharePoint community and will work tirelessly to make this effort a success.
On a personal note, I will be reaching out to everyone in the South Central region of the United States (Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana) whom I know personally or have contact information for in the near future to offer my assistance. My (rather ambitious) goal for FY09 is to personally visit each and every user group in the South Central region to spread the ISPA vision. If you are involved with the organization or operation of a SharePoint user group (including code camps, tech fests, or any other community efforts), or would like to start one, please contact me directly (eshupps [at] binarywave [dawt] com) with any questions, comments or ideas.
Long live the SharePoint Nation!!!