Vivit Announces the 2014 EMEA and APJ Award Recipients

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The Award recipients are as follows: Violet Seah, Champion of the Year, Jan Czajkowski, Leader of the Year, Gordon Appleby, Speaker of the Year, and Mark Laird, Top Virtual Contributor. The awards represent outstanding service to the Vivit community.

Without these volunteers, the HP Software community would lack much of the innovation and knowledge sharing that makes the HP client base so successful in delivering real value to their business.

Vivit announced the award winners from the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) and Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ) regions at the HP Discover Conference in Barcelona, Spain. The Board of Directors presented the Champion of the Year Award to Violet Seah (Singapore), Leader the Year Award to Jan Czajkowski (Sweden), Speaker of the Year Award to Gordon Appleby (United Kingdom), and the Top Virtual Contributor Award to Mark Laird (United Kingdom).

This year marks the sixth anniversary of the awards presentation recognizing outstanding service to the Vivit community. Winners are chosen from submissions by members worldwide.

“The heart of our organization is volunteers,” said Laura Walker, Local User Group and Special Interest Group Chair, Board of Directors. “These individuals dedicate both their time and expertise to the advancement of their peers and their industry. The networking and knowledge sharing these leaders facilitate is invaluable. Without these volunteers, the HP Software community would lack much of the innovation and knowledge sharing that makes the HP client base so successful in delivering real value to their business.”

Champion of the Year:
Violet Seah received the Champion of the Year Award for expanding the Vivit community in the APJ region, in particular Singapore. Seah organized a series of webinars covering the wide spectrum of the HP Software portfolio and reached out to customers and partners in the region inviting them to learn and connect through these web events. She also brought HP employees to the community by regularly presenting the value of Vivit to the sales and marketing teams. In Singapore, membership has grown 178% in the last year, and the first local user group was founded. Seah worked with the local user group leader to organize the first meeting on August 15, 2014.

Seah has close to 20 years of regional marketing experience and specializes in B2B technology marketing. She is currently the HP Software Services Marketing Manager, APJ, as well as the HP Software Regional Lead, Community and Reference Program, APJ.

Leader of the Year:
Jan Czajkowski received the Leader of the Year Award for his leadership in the the Swedish local user group, HUGS, serving on the local Board for the past four years and as the Chairperson since April 2014. He organized several meetings and seminars and is a frequent speaker at the local user group events.

Czajkowski is a Quality Center Consultant at SQS Sweden with over 13 years of experience in ALM/Quality Center as well as Unified Functional Testing. He has been working with a great number of customers in Sweden and Norway, implementing upgrades, workshops, mentoring, and day-to-day maintenance. Czajkowski has been teaching HP courses on Quality Center and Quick Test Professional in the Nordics during the past 8 years, and he also created his own two-day course in Quality Center Scripting.

Speaker of the Year:
Gordon Appleby received the Speaker of the Year award for presenting internationally on Performance Testing, representing Vivit at HP events, and encouraging others to participate in the Vivit community.

Appleby is one of the founding directors of Trust IV in the UK, a company established in 2005 and which specializes in software quality and software risk management. With over 25 years of IT and telecommunications experience, he is considered a thought leader in Performance Testing and Test Automation. With a background ranging from Operations, Development, Support, Quality Assurance and Management, Appleby offers significant benefits of technical depth and managerial breadth to his customers and colleagues.

Top Virtual Contributor:
Mark Laird received the Top Virtual Contributor Award for his participation in and contributions to Vivit’s website which is the hub of the worldwide community. He has been a member since 2010 and runs the Business Service Management (BSM) Special Interest Group (SIG) and participates in other virtual SIGs in related areas. He attends live webinar events to acquire cross-training on HP products and services and searches the forums, blogs, and newsletters regularly for solutions to issues or questions about HP Software product installations. Recently the BSM SIG has taken on hosting the HP BSM and Operations Manager practitioner forum which extends the scope of Vivit. He also participates in all online Board of Directors nominations and elections to bring outstanding leadership to Vivit.

Laird has over 10 years of experience with HP Solutions including Business Service Manager, Operations Manager, and the Service Management solutions. Currently a Group Technical Architect at Steria, a European IT service industry leader, he provides support and advice as well as pre-sales expertise across the wide HP suite including Business Service Manager, uCMDB, Operations Manager, and Cloud Service Automation.

About Vivit
Vivit is a non-profit corporation founded in 1993 (as OpenView Forum) by customers of Hewlett-Packard's Software products to represent the interests of HP Software customers, developers, and partners worldwide. Vivit represents and serves the broad HP Software and Solutions Community and is the endorsed HP Software users group. Vivit currently has members all over the world representing all areas of business and industry.

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