A-Team members during the NetApp Insight keynote pre-shows.

If you were at NetApp Insight Las Vegas this year, you probably noticed the NetApp A-Team roaming around the show floor, speaking at breakout sessions, or on-screen at the keynote pre-shows. I had several people come up to me and ask who we are and what we do, so I thought I’d give a quick description for those who don’t know.


The NetApp A-Team is a group of IT professionals, including NetApp customers and partners alike, that share a passion for NetApp and its products. But we are more than just social media influencers and bloggers. We are in the field every day working with NetApp products, seeing what works and what doesn’t, using our experience to give feedback to NetApp and to enrich the broader NetApp community.


This year at Insight Las Vegas, we had a big agenda. At the Social Media Hub, we facilitated various whiteboard sessions about topics like automation, AWS, MongoDB, DevOps, IoT, and more. We presented two BOF (Birds of a Feather) sessions on Next-Generation Data Center and Data Fabric. I was on the panel for the Data Fabric session, and it was my first time speaking in public in another language! As always, the entire A-Team gave me all the support I needed and made me feel very comfortable. We had great engagement from the audience. It is good to know that the Data Fabric message is resonating with customers and partners.

A-Team members answer questions during Birds of a Feather.

On Monday night, the NetApp A-Team had a Beer & Bacon Reception where Insight attendees could come meet us face to face. We even had Tom Mendoza celebrating with us. The NetApp A-Team celebrated its 5th anniversary, with 5 of the A-Team’s original members in attendance.


Members of the NetApp A-Team celebrate with Tom Mendoza.

This year, the A-Team was front and center at the general sessions. Before each session kicked off, we did some interviews with various team members talking about their experiences at the conference and pumping up the crowd for the day ahead. I got to do an interview with my fellow A-Team member, Becky Elliott, to talk about the Women in Technology (WIT) Panel. The WIT session was very inspiring, with a record-breaking attendance of 400 men and women from all over the world.


And who knew we had a true rock star on the team? Our own Glenn Dekhayser played and sung on the stage with the NetApp Insight Band before the general session on Wednesday! His performance was amazing. Everyone went nuts for his rendition of “Life is a Highway.”


Glenn Dekhayser rocks out with the band at NetApp Insight.

The NetApp A-Team also participated in this year’s sessions with The Cube. Phoebe Goh and Paul Stringfellow talked about the A-Team program and also explained what the hybrid multicloud means for channel partners and customers. It seems that Paul and Phoebe love the camera, and the camera loves them! By the end of every day, they had live videos recapping all the major points from that day on Twitter via the @NetAppATeam handle. At the end of the week, the NetApp A-Team also took part in a live Tech ONTAP podcast to recap the events from the last few days.


We’ll also be at NetApp Insight Barcelona next week. If you spot one of us, be sure to say hello, we’d love to meet you!

Paula Silva

Paula Silva is the NetApp Technical Lead at Columbia Integração in São Paulo, Brazil, NetApp’s oldest Brazilian partner and one of the largest SPs in the country. With nearly 20 years of battle-hardened experience in the industry, Paula is her customers’ trusted advisor when it comes to NetApp implementations and data migrations.

Paula loves to travel whenever she gets the opportunity (although she admits that flying makes her a bit nervous). Her bucket list includes trips to Iceland, Japan, and Alaska. She also enjoys photography and cooking in her spare time.