In the past couple of years, I've been through a series of changes both big and small - moving back to New York City, getting married, changing blogs. Today brings another in that series of changes, as it is my last day with IBM.
I'm both excited for what lies ahead and sad to leave such a wonderful group of colleagues. I've had the great fortune to work with some of the best and brightest within IBM and Lotus. I truly value the time I've spent at IBM/Lotus and am very thankful for the amazing colleagues and friends I've come to know during my time there. And I don't expect those relationships to change - though I'm leaving the company, I'm certainly not leaving the Lotus community.
My decision was not one I took lightly. For the past couple of years, I have often had thoughts of changing focus - taking some time to explore my interests outside of IT and explore new possibilities. I've been very fortunate that I've been able to explore two of my passions while working as an IBMer: travel and photography (and sometimes, a combination of the two). I've found, however, that I'd like to explore that creative side a bit more, so I'll be devoting more time to photography, and will be going back to school for photography and fine art.
But as I said, I won't be leaving the Lotus community. I've started my own consulting company, Sakura Consulting, and will be providing consulting services for an array of Lotus products. I'll also continue to speak at conferences and user groups. In fact, I'll be presenting at the UK Lotus User Group meeting in September.
I want to thank my manager and my colleagues and mentors that supported me as I made this difficult decision. I also want to thank all of the friends and colleagues I've met and worked with via the Lotus community over the years. I encourage you to keep in touch, whether it be by blogging, e-mail, Twitter, or just saying hi when we cross paths at a conference. I've got so many great memories of the people in the Lotus community, and I can't wait to see the new ones that are to come.