As you may recall, last year VMware very kindly designated me as a vExpert 2011. I couldn’t be any happier about that although at the time it fazed me for the whole day! Yesterday at VMware Partner Exchange 2012 in Las Vegas, VMware announced some of the detail about their vExpert 2012 programme.

For those who aren’t familiar with it, the vExpert award is not about technical ability it’s about sharing knowledge, experience and helping to grow and encourage the VMware virtualisation community. The award is given to the most active and enthusiastic VMware users and community members each year and benefits the recipient in a number of small ways:

  • They get to use the vExpert logo
  • They get year long NFR trial licenses for much of VMware’s products set
  • They get the opportunity to join beta and early access programmes
  • They get invited to attend exclusive events at VMworld and Partner Exchange

There are other benefits too. None of them should be underestimated though. Additionally Alex Maier, the vExpert Program Manager, and John Troyer (her predecessor) both work very hard on our behalf.

The 2012 programme is going to be a little different though. It is going to be expanded to provide 3 paths to becoming a vExpert. They are (and these were shamelessly copied from the announcement in the vExpert forum):

Evangelist Path

The Evangelist Path includes book authors, bloggers, tool builders, public speakers, and other IT professionals who share their knowledge and passion with others with the leverage of a personal public platform to reach many people. Employees of VMware can also apply via the Evangelist pathway.

Customer Path

The Customer Path is for internal evangelists and community leaders from VMware customer organizations. They have contributed to success stories, customer references, or public interviews and talks, or were active community contributors, such as VMUG leaders.

VPN (VMware Partner Network) Path

The VPN Path is for employees of VMware partner companies who lead with passion and by example, who are committed to continuous learning and to making their technical knowledge and expertise available to many. This can take shape of event participation, video, IP generation, as well as public speaking engagements.

Although there are 3 paths, there will only be one vExpert designation – everyone will get the same award.

So, how do you become a vExpert? The exact requirements can be found along with instructions for nominating someone (or yourself) at www.vmware.com/go/vexpert2012. Good luck.

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