Re: Questions for candidates - board processes & significance


I was away last week travelling, so I'm coming late to the election
campaign. I have almost decided who I would like to vote for, but there
are still a few things which are important to me when considering a
prospective board member.

1. If elected, will you seek a named position
(chairman/treasurer/secretary) on the board? If so, why?

I have served as secretary for the past two years.  I am undecided about
what position I might seek in the next term, but I do think I will seek
some position again.

2. Board meetings are minuted, and these minutes are published
regularly. However, the board also increasingly makes decisions on
board-list with the Apache +1/0/-1 convention. Would you support the
minuting of these votes, including recording any -1 votes?

Yes I would.  This seems a reasonable request to me, and I approve of
being more transparent.  That said, I think it is very rare when a vote
is controversial.

3. I think financial transparency is important. If you plan on applying
for the treasurer position, what changes (if any) would you propose for
the budgeting process? How often would you publish financial reports for
the foundation? Are you happy with the level of transparency in the
board's finances now?

I am not planning to run for treasurer.  I would like to see The GNOME
Foundation become more transparent and to release information more
regularly.  In the past year, we really struggled to get the Annual
Report completed and it was quite late.

The GNOME Foundation really needs more interested volunteers to help
with things like this, especially if there is interest in improving
things in these areas.

4. Our relationship with a number of groups has suffered this year - and
one of the lesser known ones (but one I'm involvedd in) is the Libre
Graphics Meeting organisers (a group of people representing a couple of
dozen "free art" projects). Are you aware that the LGM organisers
withdrew all the funds that the GNOME Foundation was managing for them
this year, because they have been unhappy with the responsiveness and
quality of communication with the foundation over the past 2 - 3 years?
Do you have any thoughts on why this particular relationship degraded?

The LGM's needs were beyond the capacity of our abilities and staffing.
Considering the frequency that they needed access to their funds, it
makes more sense for them to manage their own funds.  While the
situation was frustrating, I think it is a sign that LGM is very robust
that they outgrew the services GNOME could provide them.

And will you commit to handling or delegating answers to all
time-critical queries which come to the board during your term?

We really try our best.  Things sometimes do become problems when a
request or query is made and there is no clear person to delegate to.
Improving the structure of the GNOME community is often a part of the
solution.  For example, the board is currently working to create an
Event Planning committee to help deal with the most common sorts of
queries the board tends to currently deal with.

5. In general, as a board member communication is vital to keep people
outside the board informed whenever there is a delay or when extra input
is needed on something they're working on. For incumbents, are you happy
with the level of communication & reactivity in the current board? For
new candidates, what would you like to do to ensure that the
communication & reactivity of the board improves in the coming term?

As secretary, I have worked hard to keep communication channels open and
to keep people informed.  Is there more we could do?  Of course.  I
would like to continue to help build teams of volunteers.  I think that
GNOME tends to work best, as a community, when we encourage people to
get more actively involved in helping to ensure that things are working
well, communication is effective, etc.

6. Board members are ambassadors for the foundation. I think it's
important that board members be social, and be nice. Are you nice?

I think I am nicer, but uglier, than the average American.


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