For more than 15 years with PHP, Alena has built web applications for clients across diverse industries. She enjoys both the thrill of solving a puzzle and the AMAZING PHP community. Part of the leadership team, Alena speaks at both the Portland chapter of Women Who Code and the PDX PHP users group. The recent advances in PHP itself, and the community, excite her: most notably, the on-going efforts to expand and encompass the PHP community as a whole, working together using standards and best practices. People have always fascinated Alena: their similarities and individualities as well as how their brains work. With 10 siblings and 3 children of her own, not to mention the numerous groups with which she has been involved, Alena has honed her observation skills. An avid reader Alena is passionate about helping people overcome their own barriers to excellence in order to achieve personal confidence in their ability to learn and succeed. Her passions - programming and helping others - have collided at Treehouse where she uses her knowledge and skills to train the next generation of PHP enthusiasts.