It occurred to me yesterday that this is only the second ApacheCon that Ken Coar has missed, since the very beginning. Including the one in 1998. If one doesn’t count the one in 1998, I’ve been to every one. (EDIT: Danese just reminded me that he missed Atlanta, too. For some reason, I thought he showed up briefly for Atlanta, but I remember now that he was in Moscow at the time.)
Ken was the conference committee chairman from the very first official ASF conference, in Orlando, in 2000. (The one in 1998 was put on by another company – CNET possibly? I forget.)
Ken got me involved in ApacheCon back in early 2000 by encouraging me to submit a talk, when I was pretty sure that I had nothing to talk about. I gave an “Introduction to the Apache Web Server” then, and have spoken at every ApacheCon since then, as well as having opportunities to speak at OSCon, LinixWorld, Comdex, Open Source Forum Moscow, ApacheCon Sri Lanka, PHP|Tek, Ohio LinuxFest, and others.
I’ve mentioned before, in various venues, how everything that I’ve managed to do over the last 15 years, and the amazing opportunities that I’ve had, are due to the great people that I’ve met in that time, who have encouraged me to do things that I knew I wasn’t competent to do.
Ken Coar, more than any one person, has opened opportunities to me that I would otherwise not have had. And, on top of all that, he’s a good friend, and showed up for my wedding. I could not adequately express the respect and gratefulness I have for this fine gentleman, and how grateful I am to his Significantly Better Half for sharing him with the rest of the world.