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Star volunteer

Star volunteers

An appreciation page for those that make our events possible. The user group volunteers are content experts who spend valuable time helping to create the agendas you love. We appreciate you.


Tony Cassidy

Tony has been a major contributor to UKOUG for a decade, on the real benefits that volunteering can add to your membership.

Volunteering for the UKOUG is a reciprocal arrangement. It’s quite simple, really: you feed into it, and it feeds back. It’s a genuine ecosystem that leads to greater information-sharing and recognition for you and your organisation.

I’ve been involved in data analytics since before it was even called that, back when people still referred to it as BI. I started up the Business Analytics and Big Data Special Interest Group (SIG) in Ireland 10 years ago, and have been Chair of it ever since, as well as being a committee member on various other groups over the years.

Read more in #PTK Issue 70


John Abel

Oracle's John Abel, a frequent speaker at UKOUG events, talks customer relations, technology pivots and the true value of the user group.

I love working with customers. My best days at Oracle are when I'm spending time with them. I love getting customers to be provocative about what they would like us to do.

A perfect day for me is when a customer says "I love what you're talking about but let's be really honest, how do I get a second opinion on what you've said?" so I always say talk to the OUG, go to an event, meet a member, they're very factual rather than emotional.

John worked at Oracle from 1994 - 2019 covering various roles including Vice President, Cloud and Innovation for UK, Ireland and Israel.

Read more in #PTK Issue 70


Zahid Anwar

Zahid explains how volunteering for UKOUG has played an important role in his career development 

I first decided to present at a UKOUG event because I had valuable insight into how to set up Oracle 12c Cloud Control  in a maximum availability architecture.  I thought it would be great to share that with customers and the wider Oracle community, so I presented with Telefónica, an existing customer, at UKOUG Scotland in 2015. After that, I got the bug!

Since overcoming my initial nerves, I’ve really enjoyed presenting at the events and have found it very satisfying. I’ve done it nine times now and highly recommend it. Sharing my insights and experiences and giving back to the community gives me  a real sense of accomplishment.

Read more in #PTK Issue 71



David Griffith

David, the new Non-Executive Director at UKOUG, on staying relevant, the relationship with Oracle and the value of volunteering.

The UKOUG exists to enable members to develop best practice, network with the community and really maximise the return on investments they've made in Oracle products. But we have to ensure we remain relevant.

I believe I can make a difference to the direction of the UKOUG thanks to my background. I've had 25 years of partner and channel management experience including spells at IBM, Hitachi and Oracle.

Read more in #PTK Issue 71



Linda Barker

Linda is a Member Advocate on the UKOUG Board. Here, she explains how she’s using her role to support the Applications community.

I started working with Oracle products around 20 years ago when I made the switch from accountancy to systems management, but it wasn’t until around 2007 that I joined UKOUG.

Since then, the benefits have been huge as there’s a massive body of knowledge within UKOUG that members can tap into that simply isn’t available elsewhere.

Read more in #PTK Issue 72



Neil Chandler

Neil is a Member Advocate on the UKOUG Board. Here, he explains how he’s helping the group to adapt and move forward.

Right from the first event I attended, 25 years ago I could see the advantage of the UKOUG community – and especially the networking aspect. When you’re interacting with your peers and learning from them, you’re listening to people talk about problems that you haven’t faced yet but might face in the future.

Being a member gives you a voice. Any individual company, unless they’re huge, tends to be ignored, but when you’ve got a user group the way we have, the collective voice tends to get listened to. And Oracle does listen to both the positives and the negatives that we transmit to them from the membership.

Read more in #PTK Issue 72