Sanity Check: I Am No Hero

Sanity Check: I Am No Hero

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Originally posted 2013-01-03 07:00:26.

“I am not a role model” – Charles Barkley

I will tell you that I am many things.

I’m a father of two kids.

I’m a guy who gets obsessive about gaming.

And hockey jerseys.  I have a lot of hockey jerseys.

I’m someone with a somewhat checkered past.

I’m someone with some pretty strong opinions, and I don’t hide them well.

I’m pretty good at keeping perspective.

And so what I am not though…not by any stretch or definition of the word…is a hero…

A couple of months ago, I got an email letting me know that I had been nominated as a “hero” for CNN/Money Magazine.

(a pdf scan of the write up is here: http://www.ITintheD.org/wp-content/uploads/scan0024.pdf)

I’m not going to lie…I was extremely geeked about it.

But then as I was bouncing back and forth with the person writing the piece and the various editors, I got asked “You don’t seem really over the top about this like some people have been…why is that?”

fallen_angelsIn response, I simply shot them a link to Fallen Angelhttp://www.ITintheD.org/index.php/3061/the-fallen-angel/ - and explained that in no uncertain terms, I was absolutely thrilled, honored, flattered and stoked about it…but I was also very realistic, as well.

I told them of our December events…both the one that was in 2011, and the one in 2012 that was, at the time, just a couple of weeks from taking place.

Those people…the ones we profile out in the Meet The Troops section - http://www.ITintheD.org/index.php/category/meet-the-troops/they’re heroes.

Those teachers…the ones that selflessly gave their lives protecting children who bore no blood relation to them whatsoever and were simply doing their vastly underpaid job…they’re heroes.

The cops, the firefighters, the first responders…the people that run into harm’s way each and every day instead of away from it…they’re heroes.

Me?

Meh.

I’m just a guy who likes having a couple beers with friends and people in the IT industry every few weeks.  If it’s been said once, it’s been said a million times – I am…no, we are…completely stunned by what this group has become over the years.

That we’ve helped more than 400 people find jobs…that people trust us and have faith in me, in us, and in this group…is extremely ego-checking and humbling.

So as we get ready to roll with IT in The D on 3/13/13, Star Wars Night at the Palace this Friday, and our upcoming casual networking events in January and February between now and then…we’re still just as focused as ever on making sure that things come together properly and that we do things our own way.

I am still extremely geeked, intensely humbled, and very flattered to have even been nominated…let alone selected and written about.  They sent a photographer out to the house to do a photo shoot…a photo shoot, people…who the hell does a photo shoot about a geek?  …and the whole thing’s pretty crazy if you ask me.

I’m still not a hero.

But that brings me back to being able to keep perspective.

You can also absolutely be sure that, as always, we’ll take whatever attention we get and try and turn to it good use for the entire group.  Maybe this brings new recruiters to our events looking to hire.  Maybe this brings new job seekers to events looked to get hired.  Maybe it brings new people to the group looking to expand their networks.  Maybe this brings new folks to the table for IT in The D and helps us kick that up a notch or two.

Oh, and Gary?  Thank you for the nomination.  Seriously, I mean that.  It really does mean a lot to me that you think highly enough of me and what we do here with ITintheD.org to sit down and take the time to have nominated me.

Hopefully I won’t let you down.

I damned sure have no intention of being a Fallen Angel.

UPDATE: Ha ha, people.  You can stop sending me links to Youtube videos of songs with the word “hero” in the title any time now…although yeah, I totally laughed. :)

David Phillips is the geek that’s been pushed into management roles over the span of his career. He’s been a helpdesk jockey, a team lead, a systems architect and even a Vice President over the course of his more than 20 years in information technology for a variety of industries. He’s been profiled by CNN’s Money Magazine for his work with the group, as well as being a regular speaker for the Michigan Shifting Gears program, winning 2013’s “Outstanding Contributor for the Transformation of Careers and Lives”.