.NET Foundation Campaign: Poornima Nayar
Who am I?
My name is Poornima Nayar. I have been a developer for the past 15 years. I am a 4-time Umbraco MVP and 2-time Microsoft MVP.
I am a freelance .NET Developer and I currently fulfil the role of CTO at WebmindSE in Sweden. I focus on technical architecture and strategy on projects, mentoring my team, and hands-on software development.
I am a very active .NET and Umbraco Community member, speaking at various events internationally. I also blog occasionally and take part in podcasts.
As to the non-work side of me, I live in Berkshire, UK with my husband and 7-year-old daughter. My husband is a Server Engineer so you will find us talking tech a lot at home. I am also an aspiring singer; I restarted my training in Carnatic Music– a stream of Indian Classical Music – 5 years ago and I am now working towards a Diploma on the topic.
Why I'm running
I started my career in India, where I was given enough training to get into the shoes of a Junior Developer. As much as I am grateful for those days, I still feel that there is an element missing and an unsureness when it comes to making technology and a career in software development a feasible and accessible option to a lot of people out there.
"Isn't it challenging?", "How do you keep up with the updates in the tech world while mothering a child?", "I don't understand what you do!!" - these are some of the questions and conversations I deal with regularly in my life. For the past 3 years, throughout the lockdown, I have been working to address this balance through my talks and occasional blog posts. It is important that both technology and a career in technology sound feasible to anyone who is even remotely considering it. I try to address this too, by reassuring my audience that it is the attitude to learning and skilling up that matters. I have been a very vocal ambassador for learning and skilling up.
I believe that technology can be fun; you don't need to get alarmed by the fast-paced progress out there, you can choose a steady learning path for yourself, and pursue and maintain a successful career in development. This is something I strongly believe in and try to showcase to the world out there. If there is a time to pursue a career in tech, you won't get a better moment than now! This is something that I want to be more vocal about going ahead.
I am a very active community member for Umbraco, the .NET-based open-source CMS. People still have hesitation about open-source contributions. There is also the misconception that open-source contribution means a code contribution. My experience with Umbraco community has taught me that code contribution is only one of the ways of contributing – there are so many other ways to contribute. I would like to use my experience to get others started on a similar path and this is something I have been very vocal about whenever I have spoken about open source contributions.
If elected to the board of directors, I would also be representing women and mums in tech. I wish to be a role model, and inspire any girl or woman out there to not think twice before pursuing a career in tech.
My .NET Contributions
- I have been an Umbraco MVP for the past 4 years for my contributions to Umbraco, the .NET-based open-source CMS. I started my journey as a community member attending conferences and meet-ups. From there I gained confidence to make my first code contribution to Umbraco to the point I was the top contributor to the Umbraco CMS and Docs repositories during 2020-2021. I gained confidence from this journey to contribute to the .NET and a few other open-source repositories while continuing to contribute to Umbraco
- I have been a Microsoft MVP for the past 2 years
- I speak at a lot of conferences and meet-ups about .NET and Umbraco
- I have taken part in the On .NET Live Show, introducing Umbraco to the wider .NET community. I have always tried to bridge the gap between the Umbraco and .NET communities.
- I am an occasional blogger and my articles having a great readership!
- I am a member of the #WomenOfDotNet initiative steering committee.
- I am an honorary member of the Umbraco Core Collaborators Team. I was one of the first members of the team when it was formed and I was a team member from 2018 to 2020 when the team underwent a reshuffle.
- I have been selected as a member of the new Headless Community Team at Umbraco that will act as an advisory team, or sounding board for Umbraco HQ’s product and Heartcore team. This is not public news yet!
Experience with the Foundation
My experience and interaction with the Foundation has been minimal so far. I am keen to understand how I can be more involved and make tech more accessible and welcoming for everyone. In the past I have been in touch with the Foundation to become a member, be on the speakers' directory and also add some event information.