rbarenblat: OTW logo. (otw)
rbarenblat ([personal profile] rbarenblat) wrote2011-10-29 11:58 am
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OTW candidate thoughts

In my last post I promised some thoughts about the OTW election, and here they are, for anyone who's curious about who I personally support this time around. (These are purely my opinions and do not represent any kind of official endorsement from the current Board.)

Julia B. (Here's one of her recent org-relevant posts: About Me.) I've worked with Julia in her capacity as chair of International & Outreach, and I've found her to be dedicated, hardworking, and open to a variety of viewpoints and perspectives -- all of which are incredibly important qualities in a Board member of any org, but maybe especially this org which aims to serve so many different fannish constituencies. I also think there's value in having an international Board, given that we are an organization which strives to serve an international constituency, and I'm delighted to think of having a German fan on the Board in the coming year.

Naomi N. (Here are a few of her recent OTW-relevant posts: post candidate chat follow up: effective virtual teams; ideas for the coming term.) Naomi was on the Board serving her first term when my term began; at the end of her first term, she stepped down and had a baby*, but has remained an active coder on the archive and an active part of the org. What particularly impressed me about working with Naomi is her ability to see the big picture, her cool head (even in potentially tense discussions) and her collaborative working style. No matter how contentious a conversation became, she was always able to keep us on track and keep the meeting positive and productive. This is an incredibly valuable skill, especially in an org like ours. In my experience, a Board with Naomi on it runs smoothly, gets things done, and takes the whole scope of the org and its projects and its aspirations into account.

*At the end of my first year on the Board, I think, three of us were pregnant; it got to the point where new board members were, like, casting spells and making warding gestures to make sure that the whole pregnancy thing wasn't contagious! *grin*

Lucy P. (Here's one of her recent election-relevant post: Avoiding burnout in the OTW). Lucy has served as chair of our Accessibility, Design & Technology committee, which does awesome work and which is integral to the org as a whole. I think Lucy brings good perspective and useful experience to the table, and I really like her thoughts on avoiding burnout; having been a volunteer with the OTW since the beginning, I am all-too-aware of how difficult and pervasive a problem burnout can be. I like Lucy's communication style and her way of relating online -- which is a big deal in an org which is made up of volunteers all over the world, working together in a purely virtual context. And, speaking of "all over the world," Lucy's in Britain, which gives us another non-USian perspective.

Betsy R. (Betsy hasn't posted about the org per se, but you can read some of her thoughts in the transcripts from the recent candidate chats: chat 1 transcript, chat 2 screenshot -- also in the follow-up Q&A from the second candidate chat.) Betsy was born and raised into fandom (specifically classic Sherlock Holmes fandom), which is pretty cool. She is passionate about the work the OTW does, and as a law professor who specializes in IP (intellectual property), she's able to be a visible and powerful voice advocating for transformative works. One of the things that's important to me, as an outgoing Board member, is maintaining a good balance of skillsets and capabilities on the Board; I know that Betsy would do a great job of helping the org do the work of legal advocacy for transformative works, and also serving as one of the Board's interfaces with the wider / non-fannish world.

Let me be clear: I think all six of our candidates are terrific assets to the org, and I hope that all of them have a chance to serve on the Board at some point -- if not this year, then in future years. And I hope that all of them will remain active volunteers with the org, as I intend to do after my three-year Board term is up.

Okay, those are my thoughts; I hope they're helpful.

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