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How we’re making PuppetConf 2017 more diverse and inclusive

Having diverse members of our community be a part of PuppetConf is important to everyone at Puppet (see the recent blog post by Sanjay Mirchandani, our CEO). For the fifth straight year, we’re driving efforts to increase attendance by people who are members of groups that are underrepresented in technology today. We’ve also added new inclusivity programs we think you’ll be excited about.

As in previous years, we’re offering free PuppetConf tickets and travel sponsorships (including hotel rooms) to speakers and attendees whose organizations are unable to provide funds for travel expenses. See the section headed Speaker travel scholarships below.

We hope you will join us at PuppetConf 2017, 10 - 12 October in San Francisco, California. We would also love it if you'd pass this information along to friends and colleagues who are part of an underrepresented group, and who would like to speak at PuppetConf. We really want to increase the number of people who speak and attend this year, lending their unique perspectives to the discussions of leading IT into the future.

Speaker travel sponsorships — submit a talk by 23 April

PuppetConf is returning to the beautiful city of San Francisco this year. Submit your talk proposal by 23 April. If your proposal is accepted, and you are part of an underrepresented group, you can apply for financial support to help with travel expenses. Please indicate your request by checking the appropriate box when completing the submission form.

Not sure what you'd like to talk about? We've listed some of our favorite topics below. And don't worry if you're not a Puppet user — not all PuppetConf talks are about Puppet! In addition to the topics outlined in the call for proposals, we are also seeking talks related to the following topics:

  • Introductory topics for getting started with Puppet, modules, and using Puppet to manage other technologies such as AWS, Azure, DSC, Kubernetes, OpenStack, VMware … and anything else.
  • Stories and examples of DevOps success.
  • Examples of using Docker, containers, and container-related technologies (such as Kubernetes and Mesos) with Puppet.
  • Real-world examples of cloud adoption, migration, portability and security, spanning private, public and hybrid cloud deployments.
  • Culture- and people-related topics around continuous improvement, including career and skill development.
  • Compliance practices that help you ensure compliance, prepare for audits more painlessly, and respond to incidents quickly.
  • Examples of scaling the use of Puppet across your entire organization.

If you want to get an idea of what PuppetConf talks are like, visit the PuppetConf 2016 video page.

Don’t forget to submit your talk proposal by Sunday 23 April.

Free tickets + travel sponsorships

We're pleased to offer several free PuppetConf 2017 tickets and travel sponsorships to people from groups underrepresented in technology, including, but by no means limited to, people of color, women, LGBTQ people, and people with disabilities. We will select recipients based on interest in Puppet and related technologies. These tickets will help people who are excited about Puppet — but don't have the means to attend — join in the fun and learning at PuppetConf.

You can apply for a ticket with this form.

Free tickets for organizations promoting diversity in tech

We have some free tickets for distribution by organizations focused on increasing diversity in tech. We invite these organizations to apply for the tickets and distribute them amongst their members, to bring people to PuppetConf who might not get to attend otherwise.

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If you're part of an organization that promotes diversity in tech, please reach out to diversity@puppet.com — we'd love to chat with you, and to welcome your members to PuppetConf!

At the event, we invite you to enjoy several awesome meetups, including a Women’s Meetup, Blacks in Tech Meetup and LGBTQ Meetup. We'll be offering these in addition to all the other interactive areas and events such as Puppet Test Pilots, Puppet demos, a 5K run, yoga in the Zen lounge and other networking events.

Sponsor opportunities

Sponsors are a key part of PuppetConf, and we want to include them in our diversity efforts. If you are a sponsor, and you want to participate in a diversity program, or help support additional free tickets and travel for members of underrepresented groups (or both!), please talk with your Puppet contact. If your company hasn’t yet signed up to sponsor, but wants to, check out our sponsorship opportunities.


Food and drink

It's important that everyone has a great time at PuppetConf — and this includes making sure we're all well-fed and hydrated. We'll have both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages — and we're not just talking a can of Coke. We'll have some fancy sodas to try, non-alcoholic cocktails, and more. In the past, we've served fun items like Izzy sodas, ginger beer, imaginative mocktails, and more.

We're on it for food, too. At every scheduled meal, we'll have vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan options, all properly labeled for you to enjoy.

Childcare and nursing

Childcare options will be available during PuppetConf, and information about options and pricing will be posted on the PuppetConf event FAQ closer to the event. We’re also pleased to be offering an onsite nursing room this year. For more details, email puppetconf@puppet.com, or visit the onsite registration desk.

PuppetConf culture and giving back

Every event has its own feel, its own culture and traditions. PuppetConf is designed as a welcoming, friendly place where we can learn together, support each other, and experience a sense of community. As part of this we take our Code of Conduct and Community Guidelines very seriously. We actively communicate the Code of Conduct, and our expectations, to all speakers, participants, vendors, sponsors, and staff. We also provide education for our staff to make sure they understand how to support and reinforce a safe and inclusive experience for everyone. We enforce the Code of Conduct, and do not tolerate harassment or other unwelcome behavior at our events.

We’re also launching a new giving-back program. It’s an important part of our company culture to give back to the community, and what better way to do this than when we all join together at PuppetConf? We'll announce the details in the next few weeks, so stay tuned.

We can't wait to see you at PuppetConf

We’re going to have a fantastic event, and we hope to see you there either as a speaker or guest. Once again, we encourage you to submit a talk, register to attend, or apply for a free ticket (or all three). See you in San Francisco!

Tanya Webb works with diversity and inclusion as a member of the human resources team at Puppet.

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