#TSQL2sday: Brad McGehee Made a Difference in My Career.


For this month’s T-SQL Tuesday, Ewald asked who’s made a difference in our careers.

When I first got started out in SQL Server, all I had was books and Books Online. Back then, neither of them were particularly well-indexed, nor were they up to date.

Then I found a web site that turned things around.

Brad McGehee wrote web posts that were smart, easy to understand, and straight to the point. I was able to get in, get my problems solved, learn a little, and get back to work – all for free. (I’m not linking to the site because Brad sold it, and the new owners haven’t done a good job of keeping it up, and a lot of the advice is irrelevant – hey, it’s 15+ years old now!)

Brad then became an evangelist for Red Gate. When they wanted to send a DBA to space, Brad starred in a series of videos that challenged DBAs to answer trivia questions. (I had a lot of laughs out of that, especially Brad’s awesome behind-the-scenes videos.)

In 2012, Brad’s family situation changed, and he did the admirable thing: he gave up public life to be a “regular” DBA again and focus on his family. But as far as I’m concerned, Brad will never be a “regular” DBA – he’s an inspiration to me.

Every time I run into Brad at SQL Server conferences, I’m happy to see him. He’s just a really nice guy who helped set my database career in motion, and I can’t thank him enough. I’ve said it privately, but I’ve never said it publicly, so here you go: thank you, Brad. I thank you, DBAs from the 2000s all thank you, and your family thanks you. You do good work.

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7 Comments. Leave new

  • +1000. Brad changed my life also. I’ve had the opportunity to meet him and was fortunate to thank him.

  • Svetlana Golovko
    November 14, 2017 11:21 am

    I still have “DBA in Space” t-shirt 🙂
    I liked Brad’s check-lists…

  • Martin Harrison
    November 14, 2017 12:05 pm

    I never had the opportunity to meet him but I second what you say about his work Brent. Reading Brad’s “How to Become an Exceptional DBA” both inspired and guided me at the start of my DBA career. A tatty printed A4 copy with a fearsome bulldog clip still sits on my book shelf; every now and again I pull it down to make sure I’m still doing things the right way. Beyond the technology it’s packed with timeless good advice. A testiment to it is the amount of that information I’ve been able to relay in mentoring others. Top man, top work. If you’re reading Brad, thank-you!

    November 14, 2017 4:48 pm

    Thanks for the nice words in your blog. I have also become a great fan and admirer of you and your work.

  • mine too. I am still using his profiler book and best practices. Thank you Brad.

  • Sreejith Gopalakrishnan
    November 15, 2017 1:15 pm

    Mine as well! Thanks a lot Brad… The first time I read one of Brad’s article was in sqlserverperformace.com something similar to below link… then on whenever I wanted best practice checklist I look for Brad online… I started as a DBA in 2004 and it’s just amazing people whom I never met helped me to succeed in my career!


  • I was excited to get Brad’s autograph on one of his Redgate books at PASS. Those were the days.


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