For the past 18 months, the PASS Data Architecture Virtual Chapter has been helping IT pros build a firm foundation in database design via free webcasts with the best and brightest in the SQL Server community.       

The DArch VC has something for everyone, whether you’re a DBA, a database or data integration developer, a data warehousing professional, a data presentation developer, or a client-side application developer persisting data for later retrieval.

“Data architecture provides the blueprints that we all share,” notes VC Chair Thomas LeBlanc. “We want to make data architecture accessible to all data practitioners, and drive the point home that data architecture is a set of practices and a body of knowledge that overlaps almost all database professionals to some degree.”

The DArch VC meets the third Thursday of every month, usually at noon Central Time. And as PASS continues to reach out to SQL Server enthusiasts around the world, the VC is looking at trying other hours so database pros in different time zones can listen in live.

The VC’s next meeting is tomorrow, April 19, at noon CT (6pm GMT) with Todd McDermid speaking on Data Warehouse Dimension Processing with Integration Services - From Simple to Complex. Mike Fal follows in May with table partitioning, and Louis Davidson and Neil Hambly will be presenting this summer.

If you’re just joining the VC, you can catch up via the online archive, which includes session recordings on data warehouse design (Jeremy Huppatz and John Racer), architecture career paths (Robert Davis), database normalization (Louis Davidson and Karen Lopez), and standards (Thomas LeBlanc), as well as presentations on database modeling (Audrey Hammonds) and design mistakes (Steve Simon).

As the DArch VC grows, it’s also looking for volunteers to manage the following tasks:
•    LiveMeeting hosting - creating the LiveMeeting scheduled task, emailing the presenter link to speakers and hosts, introducing speakers before webcasts, and monitoring questions.
•    Speaker recruiting - reaching out to presenters in the SQL Server community to share their expertise and making sure session recordings are posted on the online meeting archive.
•    Marketing - helping update the DArch website, submitting meetings to the PASS Events page, promoting webcasts via community bloggers/tweeters, and notifying media sites such as, Megaphone Community, and USGS.
•    Website maintenance – acting as webmaster for the VC’s DotNetNuke-based website, hosted by PASS.

“These positions are great for people wanting to become proficient in LiveMeeting hosting, as well as meeting and recruiting speakers from around the world and understanding how to get the most from PASS,” Thomas adds. “Plus, they can lead to even more opportunities to serve in the SQL Server community and grow your career.”

The DArch VC has resources and mentors to help you learn the details of each position, which should take only 4-5 hours a month, but you need to commit for at least a year. If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact the VC at or on Titter at @DArchVC.