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[Linux-aus] Toying with Terms [Was: Can Linux Australia survive?]

<quote who="James Purser">

> Executive committee members (President, Vice President, Secretary and
> Treasurer) server for two years while the standard members serve annual
> terms. This would allow the executive members to really get into their
> positions while also allowing for more people to become involved within
> the committee process.

There was a lot of discussion about these kinds of ideas during my terms on
the GNOME Foundation board. Eventually, we decided that if the voting
constituency *wanted* continuity - or not! - they could vote for it. Simple,
hey? ;-)

It means you can get rid of a bung member and elect the excellent candidate
waiting in the wings straight away, without having to go to 'no confidence'
votes. It means that members can run on a platform of continuity, and to be
re-elected on those grounds, without taking it for granted.

We don't have a lot of churn and we don't have too many people standing for
the committee. Thus, elections are more of a checkpoint than an earthquake.
They give the committee the opportunity to step back, reassess, take new
ideas into account, and move on. Plus, it's unlikely that former members
would completely disappear - they can always help the transition. We have a
great community. :-)

Additional blabber:

Drilling down to a very specific example - Linux Australia has a brand new
president this year. There's going to be a natural pause as Jon and LA, um,
get familiar with each other. :-) So at the end of this term, Jon will tell
us what he's learned, what he wants to do, and why he should be president
again (assuming he does), and we'll get to say yes or no. Barring the slim
possibility that Jon does something spectactularly silly over the next few
months, I imagine we'll say yes. :-) A change in a position like this will
always result in an organisational pause, but it's not fatal, and we will
deal with continuity during the election process. (Remember, elections are
not won, they're lost - continuity is not a problem in this regard.)

- Jeff

GNOME Summit 2005: October 8th-10th         http://live.gnome.org/Boston2005
  We're kind of like Canada, only we hate ourselves more, and it's wetter
                             around the edges.