Passing the Torch – Seeing the OCP Community From a Different Vantage Point
“And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.”
~ Meister Eckhart
In 2009 Facebook Engineers put in motion a positive, yet disruptive change that would in 2011 become the cornerstone for the incorporation of the OCP Foundation – the birth of a new rack architecture that would be vanity free, allow for more efficient energy usage and would encourage open collaboration across the entire data center ecosystem.
In 2013 the OCP Board invited me to become the first OCP Community Manager. Some goals I was tasked with included:
- Creating an open governance structure
- Bringing all the projects together
- Growing the community
- Building a merit-based, non-pay-to-play membership model
- Teaching members how to be good citizens in an open community model
- Helping members decide how and differentiate and/or where to collaborate
- Create and refine all the contribution processes.
During my time at OCP, the Foundation also launched two (2) new Open Hardware licenses that I had the opportunity to contribute to and play a small role in creating and bringing those to the community. And this was just in the first year I was part of the organization.
Alone, I could do nothing. It was the volunteer leaders, the members, the project participants and the OCP Team that made it possible for me to “herd the cats” or “channel the water” and meet all these goals and more. Communities, like water, will find their own level and community leaders have the job of channeling the “water” and making sure it flows as smoothly as possible. While all communities have waves, I believe the OCP Community is flowing smoothly and everyone is moving in the same direction and I am honored to have been a part of its success.
In 2013 the OCP Foundation had 2 employees and 6 projects, by early 2014 it had grown to 3 employees and 7 projects and today, in 2017, there are 9 employees, 9 top level projects and 9 sub-projects. The community continues to grow through membership, project participation, IP contributions and adoption of both OCP Hardware and Software. At the end of 2013 the OCP Foundation had 61 members and today has grown to over 200 members. The mailing project mailing lists in 2014 had a total of 2448 subscribers across 6 mailing lists, today there are 23 mailing lists with over 5500 total number of subscribers. The OCP Facebook group has grown from 4000 members to over 9000 members.
It’s has been an incredible opportunity to be the Community Manager for such an amazingly talented, brilliant and passionate community. It is a source of personal pride to see our membership, governance and process models succeed and to now be looked at as a game changer to the way Open Foundations are being managed and governed.
I’m leaving the OCP Community in great hands and passing the torch to an incredible Foundation team that brings with them a vast collection of experience and leadership.
“Thank you” to my teammates, the community leadership team and to the community. Without each of you supporting and participating the OCP Community would not be what it is today. Together we’ve grown one of the most awesome open communities in, near and around the data center ecosystem. I am honored to have gotten the opportunity to work and collaborate with each over you over past 3.5 years. It’s been one heck of a ride!
I’ll still be around and participating in the Community and as an Advisor to the OCP Foundation. For those who are part of the OCP networking group, I’ll be working even more closely with you all on the Networking side of things. I start my new job as the Community Manager for SnapRoute on 1 May, but until then I’ll still be at the Foundation working to ensure a smooth transition and passing along all the institutional knowledge.
Again, thank you all so much for the opportunity. I have learned a lot from each of you, your organizations and the community as a whole. Together we have built a great community with a unique merit based governance, membership, and contribution model. I’m proud of all that we have created together and look forward to our paths connecting through the networking side of things.
I wish the OCP Foundation continued success and look forward to participating in, contributing to and collaborating with the community in my new role at SnapRoute and as an Advisor to the OCP Foundation.
PS – The OCP Foundation is looking for a Community Manager. If you’re interested, more information on how to apply can be found in the OCP Foundation Blog Post, OCP Community Manager Amber Graner Joins SnapRoute, Foundation Seeks to Fill This Important Role