There's being fired and then there's being let go. I was fired from my startup in 2013 because I failed to rise to the occasion of CEO. I was let go from O'Reilly Media last week because the company made strategic choices about its future, and community, at least as I know it, wasn't a part of that.
Both were intense experiences seared into my memory. Both made me extremely grateful for my friends, family, and the communities I run in as they sprang to support me in the wake of a terrible event.
As many people suggested in the hours following my layoff, one door closes and many open. Basically? You nailed it. Many opportunities have surfaced themselves and I received a compelling offer which I am currently mulling over no more than 24 hours after I turned in my badge and laptop. And today, I learned that I've been elected to the Open Source Initiative (OSI) Board of Directors!
While I'm excited for my future and upset at being laid off without a day's notice, I can confidently say that O'Reilly is a company that I still believe in; I drank the kool-aid long before I joined the company. O'Reilly will continue to be the most innovative media company serving students and professionals from programmers to sysadmins and designers to data scientists.
I loved my coworkers at O'Reilly and will be forever grateful for how the company allowed me to grow into a community professional, a speaker, an author, and a traveler. I'm grateful for how O'Reilly threw me into the fire of open source as the community manager for OSCON where I began to serve a world I've long benefited from.
It's been an edifying 2.5 years at O'Reilly and the future is bright. While I may never be a "Foo," I'm what O'Reilly now calls a "Goo." A Graduate of O'Reilly. I look forward to a long career serving the open source communities and collaborating with O'Reilly every opportunity I get.
Friends, family, coworkers past and present, colleagues, fellow community organizers, and community members: Thank you. You've always been there for me and I've never been more confident that I'm in the right line of work.
O'Reilly: Thank you. You were more than a stepping stone, you were a rocket ship.
Here's to what's next!