News

November 17, 2008

Nurturing Community Online

Paul Galvin ’91 honored as Microsoft Most Valuable Professional

With Trojan horses, phishing, malware, and a host of other dark, malevolent realities lurking in the recesses of the Internet, it’s reassuring to its visitors that a few friendly guides light the way. Paul Galvin ’91 is one such guide, a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for the direction he gives and the community he fosters.

“I really enjoy helping people solve problems,” Galvin says of his work as a senior solutions architect for EMC Consulting, specialists in electronic data storage. Last year, he encountered Microsoft’s SharePoint, software that allows people to collaborate on projects. Though it had been on the market for a few years, Sharepoint, like many software products, had users struggling to manage the breadth of features and uses.

In stepped computer science graduate Galvin.

An avid blogger (http://paulgalvin.spaces.live.com/blog/) and consistent voice in online forums dedicated to SharePoint, he saw an opportunity to help. “In the course of learning SharePoint, I would look at the questions people asked and try to answer them, and then post my results or research.” Though himself new to the product, Galvin provided such strong answers and assisted so many in the SharePoint forums he was nominated for an MVP. He picked up the award and title in July.

While he contends he’s “not a people person,” Galvin loves teaching. As his reputation in high-tech grows, he fields more best-practices speaking engagements to share what he learns. Recalling his work as a columnist and features editor on The Lafayette, he has channeled his skills into a book due out in December, contributing chapters to Social Computing with Microsoft SharePoint 2007.

Outside work, the Red Sox fan coaches his son’s baseball team, the Midland Park Panthers. And he finds time for another love, one that goes all the way back to third grade: playing the violin.

But it’s that love for helping others with their computing issues that keeps Galvin going. “It’s all focused around building the community,” he says.

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