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The Oracle Database Developer Choice Awards: We Need You!

Years ago, Oracle Corporation gave out Excellence Awards for developers. For example, I was honored to be chosen as "PL/SQL Developer of the Year" in both 2002 and 2006. But it's been a while since developers received those awards. The focus seems to have shifted more to C-level awards.

Well, hey, C-level folks need to feel appreciated, too.

But these days, application developers rule the roost (or, to be less playful word-wise, build the apps) and it's critical that we at Oracle both celebrate and help support more effectively the communities of developers building apps on top of Oracle Database.

That's why I put together the Oracle Developer Advocates team - and that's why Andy Mendehlson, Executive Vice President of Server Technologies at Oracle, authorized the establishment of a new awards program, under the sponsorship of the Oracle Technology Network: 

For 2015, awards will be given out in the following technology areas:

  • SQL
  • PL/SQL
  • Oracle REST Data Services
  • Oracle Application Express
  • Database Design

This awards program is different from the Excellence Awards and different from the ACE program in a number of ways, the most important of which are:

Nominations come from the community (you).
Panels of ACEs decide on a set of finalists.
Winners are determined by popular vote (that is, by you).

In other words, as much as is possible for a program implemented by Oracle, Oracle will not be driving the process and selecting the winners. You will.

Another difference between the Dev Choice Awards and the earlier Excellence Awards is that while we are certainly looking for technical expertise in our winners, we are also prioritizing contributions to the Oracle Database community. 

For example: you might not be the ultimate expert in every nuance of SQL, but you organize weekly, free seminars on SQL to university students. You don't know everything about PL/SQL, but you spend lots of time on the SQL-PL/SQL forum helping newcomers be productive.

Because, after all, an expert is "just" someone who knows enough to teach you something new, right?

Nominations Open Through August 15

We encourage you to nominate an Oracle technologist you believe is deserving of this award. We are accepting nominations through August 15. Just provide her or his name, email address (if you are not sure, just put in yours! :-) ) and a description of why you think this person should win.

Panels Choose Finalists by September 15

A panel of judges, composed of Oracle ACEs and Oracle employees (our current plan is to limit Oracle employee involvement to just one person per technology panel) will then choose a set of finalists in each category.

You Vote for the Winners Sept 15 - Oct 15

The worldwide Oracle technologist community votes on the finalists from September 15 through October 15.

Winners Announced at YesSQL! Celebration at OOW15

The winners of the Oracle Database Developer Choice Awards will be announced at the YesSQL! Celebration during Oracle OpenWorld 2015. As for prizes, we have opted to emphasize recognition over monetary prizes. All winners will enjoy:
  • Feature Profile on the OTN Community Platform 
  • Feature Profile in the OTN Database Community Newsletter
  • Inclusion in a feature story in Oracle Magazine
  • Oracle Developer Choice Badge on the OTN Community Platform
  • Award points on Community Platform
  • Commemorative Plaque or Certificate
We Can't Do It Without You

It would be easier (and less risky) for us (Oracle) to keep total control of the process. No public nominations, no finalizing lists by ACEs, no popular vote for winners. 

Instead, we are relying on you, members of our technical community, to participate and to drive the process, and, ultimately, to vote. Only with enough nomination and enough votes will this awards program be successful, so please participate. Early and often, as we say in Chicago.

Help Oracle Build the Community!

This is your chance to shine and earn highly deserved recognition for yourself or your respected peers.

Please take a moment out of your day to think about people from the community who have had a positive impact on your Oracle development life. And remember: they do not have to be world famous!

One of the key objectives for this awards program is to increase awareness of the many, many Oracle technologists who are not yet widely known, but have deep expertise and are having a substantial impact in their region, or their online community, or their local user group.

So check out all the details about the Oracle Database Developer Choice Awards

Then visit our nominations page and tell us about your favorite contributors. 

It'll only take a few moments - and the impact on both the global community and the person you nominate could be substantial.

Steven Feuerstein


  1. Hi Steven,

    Why require an email address of the nominee? Now I have to abort my nomination since I don't know the email addresses of my candidates.


  2. Rob, I agree COMPLETELY. We are working on changing this. Please submit and put in your own email address for now.

  3. Hello Steven,

    good idea, but I don't think I want to read a 3000 words legal document before nominating someone. I just skimmed over it and found that I cannot nominate people from Quebec or Italy??? Sorry, but restrictions like this make me wonder whether this is really a fair contest.


  4. Marcus, I feel your pain. I felt my own pain in this area. I wish that we didn't have to incorporate this sort of "legalese" in the awards program, but it was unavoidable. Apparently. I would say "ask the lawyers," but believe you me, I did that.


    Regarding Quebec, I was told "The laws of the province require all marketing materials to be fully translated into French in order for Quebec citizens to participate. Historically we have not chosen to translate all of the documentation and marketing materials for a program. It's literally everything - no materials can be English only." We didn't have the time or resources to do such a translation.

    Regarding Italy: I did not get a definitive response, but only that it most likely has to do with laws in Italy that make it extremely impractical to hold a program with awards, even if those awards have a small monetary value.

  5. But hey why focus on the negative? Nominate away! A nominee might not be eligible, but you can be sure that if we had to reject a dozen top candidates from Quebec, we'd take a long look at getting docs translated for next year!


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