Ten years ago, many of us started our careers in testing, generally moving from a different internal role. It was common for people who were product users to be hired to jump start their technical career. Now, we see the growth of tester positions that require coding experience or a computer science degree with little emphasis on the testing profession. Melissa Tondi discusses the changing landscape of the role of testers, the challenges of hiring, and a way to shift the pendulum back to balance technical acumen with a user advocacy role. Melissa leads a thoughtful discussion on what makes a good tester, how test leaders can continue to promote our profession, and how to accentuate the value testers bring to organizations. She identifies factors that caused the test/QA role to become mainstream and how it shifted to become more technically focused. Melissa helps fill in the gaps with a test strategy that incorporates a solid automation strategy which allows for balance between supporting the development efforts while equally emphasizing user advocacy tests.