This is something I've given a lot of thought about.
I started this group because I wanted to help two of my friends get jobs. I also wanted to scratch some side projects that I wanted to do - but didn't have an excuse for. Thus Tampa Devs was born
Since it's inception, we've grown immensely. We're a 501c3 nonprofit community with 1500+ members that grows daily.
Amongst other things, I've learned to host my first hackathon, made my own clothing line, and built a thriving member board. There were so many lessons I've learned along the way in the 1.5 years I've ran Tampa Devs
And there were so many failures and mishaps too. Each of those stories are lessons that has made me stronger as a leader, organizer, and as a person
That drive for growth - is the most important cultural value I've instilled into Tampa Devs. It's how our board members were selected. It's what motivates new members to join the group.
We all share that desire. And I've fulfilled many of those desires running Tampa Devs
But I have bigger ambitions in life. Dreams that I want to achieve one day. And I can't if I am always thinking about Tampa Devs all the time - I don't have mental capacity for other goals.
It's time for me to move on. To groom the next leaders into Tampa Devs, who share the passion and drive as I did when I started. And to bring fresh ideas to the table
I want to plan for Tampa Dev's future. And to step away from day to day operations.
I think this is an important transition for the long term sustainability of Tampa Devs.
I do not want any organizer to run events indefinitely and burn out. I want them to think of Tampa Devs as a stepping stone, just as I do the same.
To do that, I am taking the initiative. By stepping down later this year. To create a vacuum so that others may step forward.
I delegate whenever possible, even if the perfectionist in me knows things will not be to my ideal standards, and things take longer with more overhead
I don't step in and give final say to my VP. I spend less hours throughout the week planning events so that I don't overwork myself at the expense of an unsustainably high bar I set
I give oppurtunities for others to step up with an open invitation
When people reach out to me for leadership decisions, I point them to my VP to decide instead
I'm "disengaged with the outcome" as one friend described to me.
This has been the hardest pill for me to swallow. I'm watching my baby I made grow up and take it's first steps on it's own - and I have to support where ever it decides to go.
I want future organizers to make "Tampa Devs" their own. That only works, if they have ownership from the ground up to create their own story
I will always be here to support the legal and financial work necessary to run Tampa Devs. But 6 months from now (November 2023), I will be stepping down from all day to day operations, and providing only advisorial support instead
We will be moving towards a nonprofit governing model long term, more details to come
Made in Tampa wrote an article dubbed "The Unstoppable Rise of Tampa Devs" detailing more information