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What New Leadership Means for Cloud Foundry Foundation

The coming year brings a fresh approach to the open source community and a continued integration of Kubernetes into the original platform.

This morning, we announced that I’ve stepped into the Executive Director role of Cloud Foundry Foundation. Before I say anything about this, I want to provide our former ED with the same courtesy our community affords project leads as they move onto different roles: 

Abby Kearns, the Executive Director for the Cloud Foundry Foundation since 2016, has stepped down from the project. We thank her for her service. 

Abby and I have worked together in lockstep throughout our shared tenure at the Foundation. She has been a stalwart steward of the ecosystem and an ideal partner for pushing the project forward. I am incredibly excited for her next step and wish her the best in her new role.

The Future for Cloud Foundry

As CTO, my work has been deeply technical and highly focused on our community. Though I will officially be the Executive Director of the Foundation, none of that will stop. In addition to managing relationships with our members and Board, I will remain committed and focused on the core community of Cloud Foundry.

In fact, we are doubling down on community outreach this year. More than ever, we want to focus on the individuals who comprise our core community of contributors and end users, who have worked every day to make Cloud Foundry the seamless experience it is today. 

Our focus as a Foundation has always been to make developers’ lives easier, and our community is the driving force behind the push to keep the technology on the forefront of innovation. We are continuously evolving the platform to build in new technologies as they mature and become relevant to our user community. You may have noticed a trend in the last few years: much of the technical work our community has done has been to incorporate Kubernetes into Cloud Foundry technologies. Kubernetes skyrocketed to popularity and has become the standard way to orchestrate containers, but it lacks a developer experience. That’s why we are committed to bringing the Cloud Foundry developer experience to Kubernetes. 

Early on, our community created its own container orchestration component within the Cloud Foundry platform because we were ahead of our time in utilizing containers. Now that Kubernetes has matured, our community is embracing it, working on migration strategies and tools, and much of our contributors’ time will be freed up to focus even more on improving the developer experience.

This is the power of open source: it allows the community to advance the project forward. Throughout this process, our community has ensured that the entire ecosystem, from commercial distributions to the end users, has been brought along on the journey. The community takes the process of migration from one design to the next very seriously, and has successfully transitioned the architecture numerous times over the last five years. 

The Commitment to Change — and Staying the Same

As the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus said, “Change is the only constant in life.” Our community embraces that way of thinking, both for the Cloud Foundry project itself and when considering how to continue to enhance the developer experience provided by the platform. Ultimately, the core Cloud Foundry function cf-push will remain well into the future, and its architecture will continue to evolve.

As the new Executive Director of the Foundation, I will continue to steer the project forward with guidance from our community, ensuring the individuals who use and build Cloud Foundry every day receive the support, respect and accolades they deserve. It is the shared vision of the entire ecosystem to perpetuate the life-changing usefulness of Cloud Foundry across the cloud native landscape, bringing that experience to Kubernetes users and uniting the incredible open source projects that improve all our lives.

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Chip Childers, AUTHOR