My first encounter with Kate was in November, 1999. She stepped into (what do flamingos do...tip toe? dance?) the first online seminar organized through the Global Educators' Network (GEN). The seminar was called "The Virtual Professor" facilitated by Linda Harisim. I was the community coordinator, and was nervous as hell about what to expect with this new venture. Here's an excerpt from Kate's first post:
Please ask me (The Pink Flamingo!) questions if you want to ask aI remember thinking wow! Who is this person calling herself a Pink Flamingo? She seems so interesting!
Learner who can also see things from the Educator’s perspective.
Then the next post Kate changed to a pink font, and also changed her "pen" name to PinkFlamingo. I became event more intrigued. This person has a lot of pizazz. And so much to offer! Here is Kate's response to Linda's prompt to state reasons for participating in the online seminar:
Neat, I thought. This individual really gets it. She understands the value of communities of practice. A big story follows. but the short version is that PinkFlamingo became a regular participant to GEN seminars, and shortly after this first seminar launched her resource collection. To this day the "virtual professor" section remains. I've been following along ever since.
I haven't quite figured out the details of how I will proceed from here. I have a blog where I mostly talk about and reflect on my work in online communities. I'm also in constant contact with an amazing group of people in British Columbia called the Educational Technology Users Group (ETUG). We're looking for ways to share information about tools and resources related to our work. Perhaps a shared blog space for that purpose? We're all browsing, reading, testing, evaluating, critiquing on a daily basis... Imagine the benefits to sharing with a wider audience!
Whatever happens I'm committed to sustaining this amazing resource that Kate began 10 years ago. Thank you, Kate!