Brian King was one of the first people I met at Mozilla. He is someone whose opinion, ideas, trust, support and friendship have meant a lot to me – and I know countless others would similarly describe Brian as someone who made collaborating, working and gathering together as a highlight of their Mozilla experiences, and personal success.
Brian has been a part of the Mozilla community for nearly 18 years – and even though we are thrilled for his new adventures, we really wanted to find a megaphone to say thank you… Here are some highlights from my interview with him last week.
Brian came to Mozilla all those years ago, as a developer. He worked for a company that developed software which promoted minority languages including Basque, Catalan, Frisian, Irish, Welsh. As many did back in the day – he met people in newsgroups and on IRC, and slowly became immersed in the community – regularly attending developer meetups. Community, from the very beginning was the reason Brian became grew more deeply involved and connected to Mozilla’s mission.
Early contributions were code – becoming involved in with the HTML Editor, then part of the Mozilla Suite. He got a job at Activestate in Vancouver, and worked on the Komodo IDE for dynamic languages. Skipping forward he became more and more invested in transitioning to Add-On contribution, and review – even co-authoring a book “Creating Applications with Mozilla” – which I did not know! Very cool. During this time he describes himself as being “very fortunate” to be able to make a living by working in the Mozilla and Web ecosystem while running a consultancy writing Firefox add-ons and other software.
Dear Community – “You had me at Hello”
Something Brian shared with me, was that being part of the community essentially sustained his connection with Mozilla during times when he was to busy to contribute – and I think many other Mozillians feel this same way – it’s never goodbye, only see you soon. On Brian’s next adventure, I think we can take comfort that the open door of community will sustain our connection for years to come.
Brian came on as Mozilla staff in 2012 as the European Community Manager, with success in this and overseeing the evolution of the Mozilla Reps program. He was instrumental in successfully building Firefox OS launch teams all around the world. Most recently he has been sharpening that skillset of empowering individuals, teams and communities with support for various programs, regional support, and the Activate campaign.
With a long string of accomplishments at Mozilla, I asked Brian what his proudest moments were. Some of those he listed were:
- AMO editor for a few years reviewing thousands of Addons
- Building community in the Balkan area
- Building out the Mozilla Reps program, and being a founding council member.
- Helping drive Mozilla success at FOSDEM
- Building FFOS Launch Teams
But he emphasized, in all of these, the opportunity to bring new people into the community, to nurture and help individuals and groups reach their goals provided an enormous sense of accomplishment and fulfillment.
He didn’t mention it, but I also found this photo of Brian on TV in Transylvania, Romania that looks pretty cool.
To wrap up, I asked Brian what he most wanted to see for Mozilla in the next 5 years, leaning on what he knows for years as part of, and leading community:
“My hope is that Mozilla finds it’s North Star for the next 5-10 years, doubles down on recent momentum, and as part of that bakes community participation into all parts of the organization. It must be a must-have, and not a nice-to-have.”
Thank you Brian King!
You can give your thanks to Brian with #mozlove #brianking – share gratitude, laughs and stories.