Celebrating One of Our Own

Community Manager Appreciation Day

Today is one of the best holidays of the year.  You didn’t know?  It’s Community Manager Appreciation Day!  Join us in saying “huzzah” thrice for !

We asked  ,  , and   for their feedback on Kristen.  What we got didn’t disappoint.


Kevin M. Sparenberg, Community Evangelist

Before joining the Community Team, Kristen was a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed Solarian looking for a role change within SolarWinds, allowing her to grow.  She knew what SolarWinds did, knew about our software portfolio, she knew about our employees, she knew our culture, and she thought she knew our customers.

Then she met the THWACKsters.

In IT, we jokingly say new people drink from the firehose, but imagine Kristen’s first day on THWACK.  Let me set the stage.  Kristen walked into a community with:

  • 5,735 blog posts in 48 distinct blogs
  • 85,343 forum threads with 279,566 replies in 68 different forums
  • 10,790 feature requests within 41 products
  • 2,606 shared content files in 20 categories
  • 102,975 comments across the platform
  • and 184,356 THWACKsters

Oh – did I forget to mention that we had just finished a migration to a new platform when she began?  Not only did she have to learn about THWACK, but she also had to navigate a wholly new platform for the entire community team.  Think about that momentarily: most of the existing documentation was no longer valid.  Did that stop her? Categorically no, it did not.

She’s one of my favorite people at SolarWinds because she’s the biggest advocate for the community.  THWACK is for THWACKsters helping THWACKsters.  It’s a place for education, fun, and cooperation.

Those of you who have attended a SolarWinds User Groups (SWUG) , know her as the most energetic, kind, and enthusiastic person to ever grace us with their presence.  We see eye-to-eye on many things, except I don’t agree 100% with her musical selection, but she’s willing to die on that hill for some reason and keeps saying #SwiftieNation as if that's supposed to mean something to me.

Raise a glass of your favorite beverage and toast Kristen on this Community Manager Appreciation Day.


Chrystal Taylor, Community Evangelist

Obligatory Mean Girls Meme FormatMean Girls references aside, we stan Kristen here. I’d be lost without her, and this community wouldn’t be what it is today. She spearheads so many programs on THWACK, herds the cats that we are, and keeps this well-oiled machine running. She goes out of her way to ensure everyone understands the importance of this community. We couldn’t ask for a stauncher supporter inside SolarWinds.

She’s an unstoppable force with a love of process and documentation (a woman after my own heart.) She’s a person that gets things done. I admire her determination and, of course, her drive to continue to make this community better.

Cheers to Kristen on Community Manager Appreciate Day and every day!


Dylan Walsh, Associate Community Specialist

Counting down the days till  has her own MasterClass special (and you bet I’ll be the first to click ‘Enroll’). I still vividly recall my initial day with the THWACK team over a year ago, getting Kristen's lowdown on the intricacies behind each program. Every step was meticulously laid out in great detail, and it was from that moment when I thought, "Oh- This girl totally gets the vibe."

Throughout the year working alongside Kristen, she not only revealed her immense passion for our SolarWinds Community but also turned me into the #1 THWACK superfan, shouting it from the rooftop of our international headquarters (I’ve got a megaphone, and I’m not afraid to use it). If there's anyone who can articulate the significance and importance of each and every one of you, it's Kristen. She ensures everything is spot-on, from top-notch prizes to generous THWACK points in our activities. No doubt she's the powerhouse ensuring there's always something fun happening on THWACK.

Learning from Kristen over the past year has been a great honor, and bringing my knowledge to our community comes with great gratitude. I couldn’t be more grateful for how THWACK has been shaped by her involvement.

So, let's raise our vodka Red Bull mice – and give a resounding cheer in Kristen's name! Here's to the queen of THWACK, turning IT into the ultimate party.


That’s some epic feedback.  We’re glad to have Kristen here, and we are sure you are too.  We’d love to hear about your experiences with Kristen and how she’s helped continue to make THWACK the best community in IT.

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