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PASS Summit Speaker Agreement Amendment

Members of the community have recently reached out to the Board, and to me personally, asking questions about changes to the PASS Summit speaker agreement cancellation policies; particularly relating to clause 16.

I wanted to share some additional information to clear up any confusion or concerns regarding these clauses.

These changes were originally implemented in 2016 and have been included in the speaker agreement every year since they were made. From a legal standpoint, we are obligated to include clauses covering our cancellation policy, but please know that the Board, PASS HQ, and the Programs Team will continue to work closely with speakers to accommodate extenuating circumstances where possible.

One of the key pieces of feedback shared was that prospective speakers had concerns about presentations being delivered by a replacement speaker in their absence.

The intent of this clause is to ensure that cancelled sessions are filled with speakers and content that are as closely related to the original program as possible. In the event that a speaker cannot present, the team works with the speaker to find a suitable replacement session and speaker.

We realize that the previous wording was causing concern, and in light of the community feedback we received, we have now updated this clause to the following:

If you cancel one or more sessions, you hereby authorize PASS to replace your Session with a replacement speaker. PASS will work with you to identify a replacement, but reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to select its own speaker or to replace your session(s) in its entirety.

Please note that if you have already provided your signed speaker agreement, the terms will be automatically updated and will not require a re-sign.   

If you are interested in presenting a session at this year’s PASS Summit, we are currently accepting abstracts until April 23, 2020.

If you have any questions about the Call for Speakers or the PASS Summit program, please contact for more information.

I look forward to connecting with you at this year’s event!

Melody Zacharias
About the author

Melody Zacharias first discovered what a database is in 1991 and has had a passion for them ever since. Her database passion has led her to immerse herself in all things Data. When she was introduced to the PASS community in 2011, she found it to be supportive and welcoming, so she jumped right in with both feet. She is proud to support that community by speaking at conferences and mentoring new members. Her reach in both mentoring and speaking extends throughout Canada, the United States, Australia, Central America, and Europe.

Her enthusiasm for the SQL community was recognized in 2016 when she was awarded the status of Microsoft MVP for the Data Platform. Her extensive support of the SQL community was further recognized when she was awarded Microsoft MVP Rookie of the Year for Canada.

She has been the PASS Regional Mentor for Canada since 2015 and led her own PASS Chapter from 2012 to 2016. She always leads by example and frequently volunteers to speak at SQL user group conferences and has been asked four times (so far) to speak at the Woodstock of SQL events: SQL PASS Summit.

As a technology leader and business owner, her clients put their trust in her to ensure projects are completed on time, on budget.

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