5x Umbraco MVP, now with an Award winning Package.


Last week (15th - 17th June 2022) was the first in person Umbraco Codegarden since the Covid pandemic. Unfortunately I was unable to attend the event in person but was able to catch a bit of it virtually.

As always, the Umbraco HQ put on a brilliant event, they had a wide range of in-person and virtual speakers, social events, Q&A sessions, and a range of different award segments. I would like to touch on 2 of those awards segments, the MVP Awards and the Packages awards.

MVP Awards

The first was part of the opening keynote and, in my opinion, it is the most important award that the Umbraco HQ give out. This, of course, was the MVP announcements. For those that aren't aware what an MVP is I have this small snippet, which I hope describes it:

MVP stands for 'Most Valuable Person' or some similar derivative, and is a relatively common particularly in different tech circles. Microsoft for example, have their own MVPs who are recognised globally. Each company/situation has a varying but similar type of definition but the following is lifted directly from the MVP page on Our (the Umbraco forum).

What is an Umbraco MVP?

Every year we honour the hardworking pillars of the Umbraco community - known as MVPs - or Most Valuable People. We are humbled by the amount of work that is being put into the project be it on the forums, pull-requests, packages, festivals, meetups and whatever this wonderful bunch of people get up to.

This year there were 7 brand new MVP's, along with 59 renewals. I am honoured to say that I was amongst those 59 renewals for the 5th time. I have to confess that each year, I hope for a renewal but I never expect it. And each year it happens I am humbled yet again, that people within the Umbraco community and the HQ itself consider me for the recognition.

A huge congratulations and High Five You Rock (#h5yr) to each and every one of my fellow MVP's.

MVP Award

Packages Awards

On the final day, the Umbraco Packages awards happened. The packages awards is a way to recognise packages / package owners / package contributors within the community and this year was the second year where there was a more defined structure to the awards. In the run up to CodeGarden nominations were opened to the public where they could put forward packages they used or had created, as well as people who had made contributions to their packages. These nominations were then passed onto the judging panel which is made up of community volunteers, and they would review, access, categories, and vote on which packages would a) qualify, b) get shortlisted in each category, and c) eventually which would win in their given category.

I was fortunate to be nominated for my Page Not Found Manager package for Umbraco v9+, (at time of writing v2 has just been released which supports Umbraco v10). As this was my first package it found itself in the "Best Newcomer" category along with some intense competition. How did I find out I was shortlisted you may ask.. well I'll tell you!

A few days prior to CodeGarden, the wonderful Lotte reached out to me and asked if I would be able to join the awards via a Teams call as I had been short listed for an award. Shocked is the least I was. I never imagined PNFM would get shortlisted for an award, but of course I said yes I'd join.

So there I was, watching the Packages live stream on one monitor, and sitting in a Teams call on the other, no idea which category I was shortlisted for.... it was quite intense. All I knew was that in the Teams call I was tagged as "Award 4" (something, I can't recall exactly what it said), so I made an assumption that I was shortlisted in what would be the 4th award announced.

Then, it started, the "Best Newcomer" category was being talked about, nominations were run through, David Brendel was presenting.

First runner up was Emptiness, a cool little package for replacing some of the core value converters to allow them produce nullable types instead of default values.

The Second runner up was ocTweetThis, Owain's first package which allows you to tweet about content in your website directly from the Umbraco back office.

And then it was the winner, it was me, my name was being read out and Page Not Found Manager was getting an award! I couldn't believe it. I'd actually won!

Umbraco Packages Award

Note: The picture above is courtesy of Matt Brailsford, thanks Matt for sending this to me as I currently do not have a physical award to photograph. I have reliably been told it is on its way.

You can read more about the MVP Awards, the Packages awards, or the Umbraco Awards you can on Umbraco.com. I've also seen alot of blog posts about peoples CodeGarden experiences this year and I highly recommend giving them a read (sorry but I can't link to them all here, I'd be listing them for days!)

In the mean time, if you didn't make it to Code Garden this year, consider trying to go next year, or even attending any of the local festivals/meetups around the world. The Umbraco Community is one of the biggest reasons, if not the biggest, that I continue to work with the platform. Get involved!

In the words of Bill and Ted - Be Excellent to Each Other

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