SMF is awesome. It's a lot like phpBB, but it seems easier and supports a whole load of fun stuff out of the box. Things like updating to a newer version or installing modification packages can be done from inside the control panel with one click, very cool. It has one of the best features ever invented: it will show when there is another reply made in a thread while you where writing your reply. Of course, loads of other things are there. Attachments, subboards, RSS feeds, ... All of which can be tweaked about as much as you want to, but the default settings work fine. Support seems to be pretty good as well. All of it is freeware.
I believe it needs MySQL, though, so if you have another DBMS (unlikely, but hey) you might want to look elsewhere.
Of course, since you are a professional developer now, you could consider the non-free options too. vBulletin is a standard option, but I can't say anything about it.