Interview with an AWS Champion Authorized Instructor

Interview with an AWS Champion Authorized Instructor

James Hirmas is co-founder of JHC Technology, an Effectual Company, and an Information Technology Subject Matter Expert with nearly 20 years of experience.

James was named an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Champion Authorized Instructor in April 2019 by demonstrating his deep understanding of AWS services and solutions and his ability to teach AWS content to others. We had the chance to discuss with James what it means to him to be an AWS Champion Instructor.

What certifications do you have?

I have earned the following AWS certifications in addition to becoming an AWS Champion Authorized Instructor:

  • AWS Developer
  • AWS SysOps Administrator
  • AWS Solutions Architect
  • AWS Professional DevOps Engineer
  • AWS Security Specialty

Why did you want to become an AWS Champion Instructor?

I pursued becoming AWS Champion Authorized Instructor to help mentor and set an example for the JHC Technology team. As one of the co-founders of JHC Technology, I strongly believe that we should always lead by example. One of the foundational principles JHC Technology is built upon, as defined in our JHC ethos, is “Never stop Learning.” At JHC Technology, we truly embrace this principle by providing continuous training to our teams and deeply entrenching everyone in cloud technology.

I also wanted to give back to the AWS community. Over the past 10 years working on the AWS platform, cloud technology has given me a tremendous opportunity to help build a successful business, reshape/redefine the technology landscape, and advance my professional career. As an AWS Champion Authorized Instructor, I work with a very diverse group of organizations from different industries and I can impart my decade-plus of real-world AWS experience to further promote, educate, and accelerate organization’s journey to AWS.

I also wanted to become an AWS Champion Authorized Instructor to work with organizations from other industries in order to better understand their requirements, challenges, and use cases so JHC Technology can stay up to date on customer landscape and technology trends.

What was the process to become an AWS Champion Instructor?

In order to become an AWS Authorized Champion Instructor, I recommend multiple years of experience deploying advanced workloads on AWS. According to the AAI program guide, you need to hold at least four valid AWS Certifications at the Associate or above level, with at least one of them being a Professional level certification. You also need to work with an AWS partner organization that is in the AWS Training Program and you will need to complete an Instructor Delivery Workshop. The workshop demonstrates technical knowledge and ability to deliver an AWS authorized course and/or complete a co-teach overseen by a qualified AWS Mentor Instructor. AWS has multiple official courses that are offered from Architecting on AWS to Security Operations on AWS. For each course offered, the AWS Authorized Champion Instructor needs to have the appropriate mix of AWS certifications.

Describe your experience as an AWS Authorized Instructor.

So far, my experience has been very rewarding. I have been able to travel to different parts of the United States and other countries to provide AWS training. I have been able to provide value with real work use cases and experiences.

It is an investment when you become an AWS Authorized Champion Instructor. I spend a lot time when I am not training reviewing course material, preparing examples to present in class, and constantly learning new AWS features and use cases.