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A Look Back, A Look Forward

By Jonathan Ellis, CTO and Co-founderAugust 19, 2016

The seventh Cassandra Summit is almost here! It’s always energizing to spend that time meeting people and watching great talks from the community. (Here’s a recap of the very first Cassandra Summit back in 2010 for a nostalgia trip.)

This anniversary is a good time to revisit my role as Chairman of the Apache Cassandra™ project.  In an Apache project, the Chair is responsible for keeping the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) Board of Directors up to date on both the project’s progress and decisions made by the Project Management Committee (PMC). PMC members are usually drawn from project committers and make decisions for the project by consensus. The Project Chair position usually rotates every couple years in order to keep fresh perspectives on the projects.   

In my case, I have been serving as the Chair for Apache Cassandra for seven years. Given the recent release of DSE 5.0 in June, I believe the time is right for a clean transition to the next project Chair. Therefore, I have notified the ASF Board that I will be stepping down after the Summit.  Next week the PMC will kick off the nomination process for a new Chair, which will be complete in time for ratification at the September ASF board meeting.  

What will not change is my passion for, and work with, the large community of users who represent the heart and soul of any Apache project. Before looking to the future, it is worth taking a minute to celebrate some milestones that we achieved together in the last seven years:

  • Matured from a very rough version 0.3 (first ticket: add support for deleting data) to an industry-leading 3.0.
  • Migrated from a Thrift-based RPC API to the Cassandra Query Language, one of many firsts in the NoSQL industry.
  • Saw Cassandra be adopted for thousands of mission-critical deployments and become the only Apache project in the db-engines top ten.
  • Watched Cassandra Summit grow from one room in an office in 2010 to more than 3,000 attendees last year.

None of that happens without a great community, and driving their success will remain a priority for both me and DataStax. My team and l will remain involved with Cassandra as committers, as members of the Project Management Committee, and as participants in the Apache Meritocracy.

I want to thank the Apache Software Foundation for the opportunity I’ve had to serve, and I look forward to seeing you at Cassandra Summit 2016!



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