End of Year (2021) Review

This year was another abnormal year with ups and downs for many. Salute to everyone that kept pushing through any and all hardships you experienced. For me, my focus continued to be family and seizing all presented opportunities while blocking out as much unnecessary noise as possible.


I consider 2021 a spectacular year with several milestones and firsts for me. This year kicked off with me being featured in the Star Tribune (the 5th largest newspaper in the United States) in Superbowl Sunday’s paper! Other major highlights included being renewed as a Microsoft MVP for the 10th year, being promoted to an Azure Platform Offering Lead at work, developing 6 new courses for Pluralsight, publishing my 7th and 8th book one of them being my 1st book with O’Reilly, appearing on 5 podcasts/webinars, & speaking at 7 conferences/user groups of them being DevOpsDays MPLS! I also continued my virtual world tour speaking at events in Africa and even Jamaica!

Here is the full list of activities from 2021:

February 2021: Featured as a technology leader in Minnesota’s largest newspaper Star Tribune. Was a full page story. Bonus this was the super bowl Sunday newspaper.  https://m.startribune.com/twin-cities-technologist-steve-buchanan-sees-a-more-inclusive-expanding-future-for-young-minorities/600019839

February 2021: Published GitOps course on Pluralsight showcasing knowledge in AKS, Azure Arc, Kubernetes and GitOps.

February 2021: Presented at Omaha Azure User group on Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes & GitOps. 

February 2021: Presented on Containers in Azure for Lago’s (Nigeria) LAGOS STATE UNIVERSITY (LASU) TECHX CONFERENCE. 

February 2021: Guest on the Cloudskills.fm podcast speaking on Cloud Native, Azure Arc, DevOps, GitOps, AKS and more https://cloudskills.fm/episodes/106

-February 2021: Published an e-book with O’Reilly on Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes for Multi-cloud https://www.oreilly.com/library/view/azure-arc-enabled/9781098102647/

– April 2021: Was a panelist on an event for the Workforce Innovation Board of Ramsey County. We discussed workforce post-COVID-19, news skills job seekers should bring to employers, and technology enhancements that employers can use to support a hybrid model post-COVID. https://www.ramseycountymeansbusiness.com/workforce/workforce-news/p/item/34678/preparing-our-workforce-for-the-future-of-work-recording-now-available 

April 2021: Presented at Open Source North on Azure Arc K8s and GitOps. Speaker profile and session here: https://opensourcenorth.com/speakers.  

May 2021: Published 2 courses on Pluralsight showcasing knowledge in SAP on Azure.

June 2021: Guest on New Relic Observy McObservface Podcast – GitOps, Kubernetes, Linux on Azure, AI, Blockchain, and more. Podcast: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1225223/8618776-open-is-not-optional-shifting-sands-and-faxing-on-blockchains-with-steve-buchanan Article: https://www.therelicans.com/mandymoore/open-is-not-optional-shifting-sands-and-faxing-on-blockchains-with-steve-buchanan-495p

June 2021: Published a new courses on Pluralsight showcasing knowledge in Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes.

-July 2021: Awarded Microsoft MVP for 10th year. 

July 2021: Guest on Microsoft official Azure Arc Jumpstart Lightning Youtube show. Talked with Microsoft Azure Arc Jumpstart Program Manager Lior Kamrat. 

July 2021: Presented at DevOpsDays MPLS on GitOps and Kubernetes a winning combo.  https://devopsdays.org/events/2021-minneapolis/speakers/steve-buchanan

September 2021: Presented at at the Jamaica Azure User Group on Intro to GitOps and AKS.  

October 2021: Was a guest on The Women in Linux Youtube Channel reconnecting with my friends Tameika Reed, Dionne Parler!

October 2021: Gave a Tech Talk: “Going Beyond Spelling Azure & Pursuing a Cloud Career” at a BDPA event.  

October 2021: Gave an Author Talk for Pluralsight on GitOps The Big Picture.  

As you can see I did not spend much time this year on certifications. I spent more time continuing to build and deepen my skills in containers, Kubernetes, multi-cloud, of course Azure, open-source technologies, and coding. This year I also stepped up my activity with GitOps. In the coming years, you will see me picking up new certifications with a focus on harder ones.

Next Year:

2021 was another full year. It was full of blessings and some hardships including a run-in with COVID even after being vaccinated. 2022 is already heating up. Some of the things heating up for 2022 I cannot speak of right now but look out for more community work from me, a renewed burst of blogs, more Pluralsight courses, e-books, and more. Also look for me to continue my focus on Azure, more on multiple clouds, Kubernetes, GitOps, IaC, and more. Please check back here often for new blogs, scripts, and more.

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