If you don’t know who Mark Minasi is, then you don’t know Windows.
Before I knew Mark personally, I would regularly encounter his books when I went from business to business during my old NT 3.5, 4.0 then Active Directory Consulting days.
Then I read his articles in Windows NT magazine, which later had different names, and transformed into Windows IT Pro. Most memorable was “This Old Resource Kit”, which was often in the back of the magazine, and the article I always flipped to first.
I first met Mark when I was doing some occasional writing for Windows NT Magazine and got my first “professional shot” to speak at a big time IT Pro conference. Mark and I were scheduled to speak back-to-back; Mark first, me second. Nothing to worry about there !
But there was a problem ! Not only was I going on directly after the best selling author and world class speaker Mark Minasi… but more importantly, our material overlapped a little bit. I wanted to coordinate material so the audience wouldn’t throw things at me.
So without knowing him really, at all, I found his business phone number, talked with his assistant, and she said Mark would call me back later that day.
And he did !
I think my brain froze up during that phone call. Here was this bestselling author talking to this totally unknown “Kid” (which by the way he would later call me “Kid” for YEARS.. really, literally, years.) From what I remember, we talked about our material decided some overlap was totally a-ok, and that was that. I can’t remember if the call was 15 minutes long or 2 hours long but I know he took the time he needed with me.
Months later at the big IT Conference, where I was scheduled to speak for my very first time… there he was. On stage. In. Front. Of. All. Those. People.
And I was next.
And if you don’t know Mark, his delivery is amazing, flawless, personal, engaging, technical, and relevant.
He was everything I wanted to grow up to be.
I was completely floored.
And then.. when his talk was over. It was my turn. On stage. In. Front. Of. All. Those. People.
And Mark. In the front row.
With. All. Those. People.
And I did.. fine. Not “Mark quality awesome.” But.. perfectly fine. In fact, for my first time out in the big leagues, pretty well.
After the talk, Mark took me aside and we had a little chat. He gave me a few tips, notes and pointers which was amazing to get from the Master.
He knew about my couple of articles in Windows NT Magazine and asked if I wanted to write a book in his new “series” of “Mark Minasi Presents” books. And after we talked for a little bit, we landed on the right topic: Group Policy, Profiles and IntelliMirror.
The three things I knew best. (Tip, if you want to see the original cover, check out this link on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Profiles-IntelliMirror-Windows-Administrator-Library/dp/0782144470 )
I wrote the book, it became a bestseller, and it launched me into GPanswers.com, my training classes, then later to found PolicyPak Software.
In other words, because Mark believed in me, he helped me become the person I wanted to become and get to help thousands and thousands of administrators just like you.
Mark would go on to become a very close personal friend, offering guidance from business to personal matters, and has been a terrific sounding board, and was I honored to have Mark at my wedding.
In short: Mark was my personal mentor, and I couldn’t have been “Jeremy” without Mark helping me along the way.
I’ve seen Mark speak now, live, more than I can remember. I can remember attending his multi-day seminars at least three times, maybe it was four. And then seeing him speak at little, medium, and big events: Mark is a professional machine at speaking, entertaining and making sure the material sticks.
I will continue to be talking at events, small, medium and large, and hope to take a piece of Mark with me on stage whenever I do.
Thank you Mark for helping thousands of IT admins be just plain better at their jobs. No one will ever be a better “explainer” than you. You’re the highest standard I know.
And thanks for taking a personal touch with me and help transform me from Kid to, well, whatever I am now. J
PS: That all being said, if you KNOW Mark really well, and want to go in the wayback machine to a time even before I knew him, check out these crazy videos:
PPS: Mark is still tweeting at @mminasi so, do be sure to follow him !