WordCamps have been around for a long time and feature the best from the local WordPress communities. It’s quite easy to get started building a WordCamp event in your area due to the great support of of the WordCamp organizational community. 2018 was the fourth year for WordCamp in Dayton, Ohio. Dayton has a vibrant WordPress community with monthly meetup events for all aspects of WordPress whether you are interested in blogging, SEO, plugin development, or which plugins or hosting to use.

The Open Source Talk that Changed My Life Wasn't Technical - talk by Joe Ferguson

This was my first time attending — let alone speaking — at a WordCamp event. I gave the afternoon keynote, "The Open Source Talk that Changed My Life Wasn't Technical", which is my own story about how I found OSMI and became a volunteer. If you are familiar with PHP conferences, it is quite common that the event does not reimburse speakers for travel or lodging. This is one of the main reasons OSMI spends much of its fundraising money on covering expenses for speakers to go to events they would otherwise not be able to attend. I’m grateful to all the OSMI supporters for their donations that let us send speakers to events. Speaking at events like WordCamp Dayton is the cornerstone of how we can get our message out. We not only reach the local attendees and sponsors, but many times attendees take our message back to their companies and we get feedback about their companies being open to our message. It’s heartwarming to hear about companies taking our message to heart and that employees can feel comfortable discussing mental health with their colleagues.

We talk about 10x developers as being a fairy tale, but you take a developer with crippling depression, get them to the right treatment, and they will literally be 10x more productive. - quote from Greg Baugues

I feel like the talk went really well. I got a lot of good feedback immediately after the talk and a lot of great things were said on Twitter. Speaking of Twitter: I had the chance to meet two more people from Nexcess who were really awesome and took some great pictures during my keynote:

Joe Ferguson with Nexcess employee at WordCamp Dayton 2018

Thanks to everyone who attended WordCamp Dayton 2018. I appreciate all of the attendees who came to see my talk, and thank you to all of the organizers, volunteers, and sponsors of WordCamp Dayton for making this event possible. If you are interested in attending an OSMI talk or event, be sure to check out our OSMI Events Calendar.