Stu West, who is the Board's Treasurer and has served on the board
since April 2008, wrote this piece, below, about why serving on the
Board is rewarding and he has kindly said I can share it more widely.
I hope that it may serve as some inspiration for any potential Board
candidates who are considering running but having trouble answering
Please think of who you know in our communities that may be a good
candidate and encourage them to consider standing. Let us support
candidates that are as truly diverse as the communities themselves.
Brianna's request got me thinking about why 15 months ago I was
excited to join the board and why now I'm still enjoying it. Of
course I'm intent on supporting the projects in general, and think the
community is accomplishing amazing things with our free knowledge
projects and having an incredibly positive impact on the entire globe.
And just being around the energy, idealism and internationalism of
our community is positive for me and balances a world that seems too
full of recession and war and other negatives.
On top of these general interests that many get by participating in
our community, serving on the board is worth it for me personally for
a few reasons:
- I have a strong interest in organizational development and
sustainability. Serving at the board level allows me to focus on
policy development, organizational structure and other high-level
issues to help ensure our projects are still thriving and pursuing the
mission in 100 years. I'm also intellectually interested in the
challenge of maintaining a community's culture even as it grows and
succeeds (my day job at Silicon Valley startups is also about this).
- I believe my particular skills (organizational development, finance,
operations, negotiating) are really useful to the foundation right now
and being able to put those to work -- and to see impact -- is very
- I'm one of those people who typically prefers the big picture view
and enjoys understanding how all the different pieces tie together
(again, this also applies to my day job). For example, I think my
edit count is highest on meta. This is a natural fit with a board
- I'm really passionate about a few things related to our community
(including developing world education, usability, and operational
efficiencies), and the Board gives me a position to understand these
and at times advocate for them.