IBM Champions

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What makes you an IBM Champion?

By Subhasish Sarkar posted Mon October 19, 2020 11:03 AM


IBM Champions are innovative thought leaders in the technical community. They contribute regularly to the body of knowledge around IBM products and the technical community. Needless to mention, it is very prestigious to be in the elite club of IBM Champions.

IBM Champion Watermark
IBM Champion Watermark

The IBM Champion selection nomination process
Every year, IBM Champions are selected through a nomination process. Anyone can complete a nomination, although IBM encourages those seeking to become IBM Champions to self-nominate themselves, in addition to any community or IBM nominations they may receive. Individuals can, therefore, either nominate themselves or be nominated by their peers or IBM employees based on their contributions in the past one year.

As nominations are received, IBM evaluates each nominee’s contributions over the preceding one year from the date of nomination submission. At the close of the nomination period, an IBM panel considers the community impact, expertise, and overall contributions of the nominee. IBM evaluates nominees, both on the quality of contributions and the level of participation across a wide variety of community activities. Nominees get notified by IBM if they are selected as IBM Champions.

Once selected as an IBM Champion, one enjoys being a Champion for the next one year. Upon completion of a duration of one year of remaining an IBM Champion, one has to go through the nomination process once again. It should however be noted here that there are Lifetime IBM Champions who do not need to go through the IBM Champion nomination process every year.

So, who are these IBM Champions and what do they do?

IBM Champions are all those enthusiasts and advocates: IT professionals, business leaders, developers, executives, educators, and influencers who support and mentor others to help them get the most out of IBM software, solutions, and services. IBM Champions demonstrate extraordinary expertise, support and advocacy for IBM technology, communities, and solutions. Remember that IBM Champions are not employees of IBM.

The IBM Champion Program recognizes all the wonderful IBM Champions. The IBM Champion Program rewards the contributions of the IBM Champions by amplifying their voice and increasing their sphere of influence.

Some typical contributions and engagement of the IBM Champions fall into the following mentioned categories. IBM Champions have active, ongoing contributions in two or more areas among the mentioned categories.

1. Evangelizing and advocating for IBM
2. Sharing knowledge and expertise
3. Helping the community grow and nurture
4. Expanding reach across the IBM portfolio
5. Providing feedback and direction on IBM products

You can learn more about the IBM Champions and their contributions by visiting them on this YouTube channel.

Perks and benefits of being an IBM
Being an IBM Champion comes with several perks and benefits that the Champions enjoy and cherish. Some such benefits include:

1. Invitations, discounts, and VIP perks at IBM as well as non-IBM conferences and events
2. Annual package of IBM Champion logo gear/merchandise to wear, use, and display
3. An IBM Champion-verified digital credential through the IBM Digital Badge Program
4. Visibility, recognition, and invaluable networking opportunities
5. Exclusive access to online IBM communities
6. Exclusive access to IBM product development teams
7. Promotion of an IBM Champion's work, content and assets via IBM’s channels
8. IBM Champions receive special recognition on their IBM Community profile

IBM Champion Logo that is displayed on an IBM Champion's IBM Community Profile
IBM Champion Logo

How has my own experience of being an IBM Z Champion been over the past one year?
I am an IBM Z Champion for 2020. I am a first time IBM Z Champion and extremely proud to be one! I am enthralled and excited, to say the least. What better reward than being recognized to be an IBM Z Champion? I feel really humbled. And, it is an utmost sense of pride for me when I call myself an IBM Z Champion.

As an IBM Champion, the visibility, recognition and networking opportunities I have been enjoying have been the most valuable assets, I believe. My skill enhancement and the promotion of my work through different IBM channels are undoubtedly what I am also cherishing the most. As an IBM Champion, I get exclusive access to online IBM communities and IBM product development teams.

Being an IBM Champion, I have had direct access to numerous “IBM Champion only” technical sessions, where I have had the privilege to listen to and interact with the IBM Experts and Leaders, real time. I couldn’t have asked for more and any better.

For me, receiving the IBM Champion-verified digital credential through the IBM Digital Badge Program was also very, very special. And, as an IBM Champion, I received my annual package of IBM Champion merchandise/logo gear to wear, use and display. That was super cool !

And, probably, a great moment of pride for me was when I got featured in the IBM Systems magazine, IBM Z as a 2020 first-time IBM Z Champion. URL -

IBM Champion-verified Digital Credential
IBM Champion-verified Digital Credential

My advice to someone wanting to become that next proud IBM Champion
Three invaluable pieces of advice from me, to be precise:
1. Strive hard to go above and beyond your routine daily Job responsibilities
2. Display your passion for technology – share your knowledge and expertise and help nurture and grow IBM communities
3. Advocate IBM products, solutions and technologies

If you can do these things consistently, you can consider yourself making some extraordinary contributions to the technical communities. These can help you become a future (proud) IBM Champion.

It is worth remembering here that you could potentially apply for being a future IBM Champion, no matter if you are a seasoned professional or are just starting your career! Just because you don’t have 20, 25, 30 or 30+ years of experience under your belt doesn’t mean that you can’t advocate for the technology or platform of your choice!

Remember that IBM Champions are experts not only in their core field of technology(ies), but they constantly strive hard to expand their knowledge and expertise in the other areas of technology(ies) as well. The IBM Champion community is a community of extraordinary experts (non-IBM’ers) across the length and breadth of IBM technologies. They are the best of the best and you should strive hard to be a part of that community and be extremely proud of yourself when you are able to achieve that.

So, now, the Million Dollar question – how do you become an IBM Champion?

Do you have it within you to be the next IBM Champion? If yes, there is a good news for you - that the nomination period for the selection of 2021 IBM Champions has opened!

So, what are you thinking about? Go ahead and plan to nominate yourself or someone you feel is worthy of becoming the next IBM Champion. Visit for more information about the IBM Champion Program and completing the nomination process. Best of Luck!

You can choose to nominate yourself or someone else under one or more of the following specific nomination categories for IBM Champions.
IBM Data & AI (Analytics)
IBM Cloud
IBM Power Systems
IBM Security
IBM Storage
IBM Developers
IBM Blockchain
IBM Watson Internet of Things
Partner Ecosystem (IPE)

As you can see from the list above, there are several areas currently supporting a full IBM Champions program. And, also, please do remember that you need not restrict yourself from nominating you or someone else under a single nomination category; in fact, you can choose to go for multiple nomination categories.

Ultimately, IBM Champions advocate for the community of technical professionals using IBM solutions, services, or products. In that role, IBM Champions collectively represent the spectrum of IBM products and technologies.

Want to search for the IBM Champions?
Searching for the IBM Champions is easy. You can search for the IBM Champions on the ‘IBM Champions Map’! Visit

IBM Champions Map
IBM Champions Map

You can also do a text-based search for the IBM Champions based on the Champion's name, country, or area of expertise. Visit

IBM Champions text-based search
IBM Champions text-based search
Subhasish Sarkar (SS) - An IBM Z Champion - Card
Subhasish Sarkar (SS) - An IBM Z Champion - Card