New year, new board members (part 1)

To kick off 2018, Stumptown Syndicate is looking for at least two new directors to join the board. Read on for details and apply by 11:59pm Pacific on February 16, 2018!

About Stumptown Syndicate

Stumptown Syndicate’s mission is to cultivate a resilient and sustainable ecosystem of diverse and inclusive technology communities.

We:

  • facilitate the sharing of resources and knowledge
  • build and support experience-based education through talks, workshops, and other events in the Pacific Northwest
  • empower communities to actively engage new learners, experienced members, and everyone else who wants to participate

Our decision-making is also informed by some guiding principles.

Current program activities include events (Open Source Bridge, Ignite Portland and WhereCampPDX), resource development (Safety First PDX and the Citizen Code of Conduct), and fiscal sponsorship (Donut.js).

Future planned activities include developing more community partnerships, expanding our fiscal sponsorship program, expanding training materials and offerings, and more!

Board qualifications

We welcome applicants from a wide range of backgrounds. People of color and marginalized folks are encouraged to apply. New directors should be within commuting distance of Portland, Oregon.

Prior non-profit experience is helpful, but not required for being a Syndicate director, as we can provide training to get you up to speed. Please apply if you’re interested in furthering our mission even if you don’t think you know enough about running a non-profit.

Serving on a non-profit board in Oregon comes with certain legal obligations, a good overview of which can be found at Oregon’s Attorney General website page about non-profit board service.

Board member responsibilities

  • Participates actively in running the organization, including frequent and timely communication with other board members, staff, and volunteers.
  • Acts as a spokesperson for the organization with knowledge of its mission, history, policies, and programs.
  • Does their best to attend each board meeting, with the understanding that three consecutive unexcused absences will be considered resignation from the board. The board meets 12 times per year, plus one annual retreat. Board meetings may be attended remotely by special arrangement.
  • Accepts fiduciary responsibility for the organization and oversee its financial health and integrity.
  • Provides oversight to ensure that the organization is meeting its mission and running programs effectively.
  • Accepts ethical responsibility and holds fellow board members and the full staff to professional standards.
  • Engages in fundraising to ensure that the organization has the resources it needs to meet its mission.
  • Makes final decisions with the rest of the board on policies related mission, programs, finances, personnel, and public relations.

What to expect

  • A full board orientation, including background information on work accomplished to date
  • Board meetings once a month in Portland that are focused on discussion and decision-making, with agendas distributed in advance
  • Timely, accurate, and complete financial statements to be distributed at least quarterly
  • Ability to choose from a range of fundraising activities
  • Training as needed to fulfill board obligations
  • A yearly retreat
  • Monthly board dinners focused on getting to know and support each other (rather than board work)

What is the time commitment?

Directors can expect to spend an average of 3-5 hours a week on Syndicate business, including time spent via Slack and email.

The term length for directors has been 3 years in the past, but is currently under review. We do expect that new board members be able to commit for at least a year.

What is the compensation?

Board members are volunteers and are not compensated. Reasonable expenses will be reimbursed (e.g., childcare, transportation, meals, approved training).

Are there any perks to being a Syndicate Director?

Fame and vast opportunities for wealth! Just kidding. There is a certain visibility to being a Director, but the biggest reason for serving is that you get to help make the Portland tech community (and beyond) better and more vibrant.

Why would I want to join Stumptown Syndicate’s board?

Some specific reasons to apply:

  • You’ve attended one of our events and want to help these type of events continue.
  • You’d like to make the community even more welcoming and supportive by improving safety, diversity, and inclusion.
  • You’d like to see Calagator or our other tools improve and thrive. Or maybe you have an idea for developing a new resource?
  • You’d like to help us figure out how to fundraise to help Stumptown Syndicate become more sustainable and expand our community impact.

Do you carry Directors & Officers insurance?

Yes, we do.

Additionally, as a volunteer board member of an Oregon non-profit, you have “qualified immunity,” as explained by the Attorney General:

To encourage citizens to serve as board members for charities, the law cloaks volunteer board members with qualified immunity. They cannot be sued for negligent acts. They may, however, be subject to lawsuits alleging that a loss was due to their gross negligence, willful or fraudulent acts.

Read more about serving on an Oregon non-profit board here.

How to apply

Please apply by 11:59pm Pacific on February 16, 2018:
https://stumptownsyndicate.wufoo.com/forms/qbplwq1ofrz92/

Questions? Email the board: board@stumptownsyndicate.org. We can’t wait to hear from you!

The 2017 recap

Over the course of 2017, Stumptown Syndicate:

  • hosted Open Source Bridge
  • sponsored the Innovate and Advocate Summit during Portland Startup Week
  • launched office hours with Safety First PDX
  • developed our fiscal sponsorship program
  • prioritized working with vendors whose mission matches our own (including moving our servers to Riseup)
  • supported meetups, events, and projects across Portland

Open Source Bridge
We’ll let the speakers, attendees and volunteers tell you about this year’s event. Here’s a sampling of the write-ups from OSB 2017:

This year’s Open Source Citizenship Award winner, Heidi Waterhouse, also blogged about her experience.

Safety First PDX
Stumptown Syndicate has a long tradition of working on resources to improve community safety, like the Citizen Code of Conduct. Our Safety First PDX program has taken on the process of continuing that work. In 2017, Safety First PDX conducted 3 trainings, covering the implementation of codes of conduct, incident response plans, and other strategies for improving community safety.

We also launched online office hours, where we’ve provided informal support to communities working on community safety questions.

Fiscal Sponsorship Program
Stumptown Syndicate has been building a fiscal sponsorship program, helping Portland communities with their administration, fundraising, and other operational needs.

We’re excited to be working with Donut.js (you can read more about them here!). We’re taking details like insurance and financial management off the organizers’ plates so they can focus on running great events.

And, by the way, you too can ask Stumptown Syndicate for fiscal sponsorship for your project.

Catching Up with Board Business
To ensure fair divisions of labor, Stumptown Syndicate limits officer positions on the board to one-year terms. This means we have some changes in the coming year, with Thursday Bram stepping up as Stumptown Syndicate’s latest President.

Photo of Stumptown Syndicate's 5 board members standing in front of a covered bridge in Vida, Oregon. Left to right: Reid Beels, Gabriela Rodriguez Beron, Elea Chang, Thursday Bram, and Sara Jensen

The 2017 Stumptown Syndicate board retreat

The Stumptown Syndicate board for 2018 is:

Thursday Bram, President
Elea Chang, Operations Lead
Gaba Rodriguez Beron, Director
Reid Beels, Director

While we’re all excited to work on these projects, 2017 has been a rough year for a lot of people. Our board is no exception. Three of our board members resigned over the course of the year for personal reasons. We support them for doing so—sometimes you need to put on your own oxygen mask first. As a result of these changes, we’re working to bolster Stumptown Syndicate as a more flexible and resilient organization.

We’re now prioritizing checking in with each other, not just to make Stumptown Syndicate a more supportive org, but because we care about each other as humans. As part of that, we’ve established a new board practice of having dinner together once a month, with a focus on each other rather than Stumptown Syndicate’s work.

We will be opening applications for new board members soon and have several volunteer roles available if you’d like to work on some of these projects with us!

Our Plans for 2018
For 2018, Stumptown Syndicate is expanding our efforts to support Portland’s ecosystem of technology communities, including these projects.

  • Growing our fiscal sponsorship program! Stumptown Syndicate will have some upcoming announcements about additional offerings for community events, so stay tuned.
  • Expanding Safety First PDX’s code of conduct and incident response resources, as well as offering more training options!
  • Hosting the 10th Open Source Bridge! We’re definitely ordering a cake, so you’ll want to be there.
  • Celebrating Calagator’s 10th anniversary! Excuse me, we’ll be ordering two cakes. We’re really going to need some help blowing out all these candles!
  • Developing more community partnerships! Stumptown Syndicate will be working with several new Portland partners in the upcoming year!
  • Redesigning our website! It’s about time, wouldn’t you agree?

To start strong in 2018, we need your support.

Your donations will help Stumptown Syndicate continue promoting and expanding the growth of Portland’s technology communities. In order to fund our early 2018 work, we need to raise $5,000 before the end of this year.

Help us close out 2017 by supporting our End of Year Fundraiser
Make a tax deductible donation below:

Seeking Board Members (Applications due 19 October)

Stumptown Syndicate, the organization behind Open Source Bridge and other local tech events such as BarCamp Portland, Ignite Portland and WhereCampPDX, is seeking applicants to fill at least two open positions on our Board of Directors.

Read on for details and then apply here. Applications close 11:59pm PDT on 19 October, 2016.

About Stumptown Syndicate

Stumptown Syndicate’s mission is to create positive social change by supporting resilient, inclusive tech and maker communities.

We envision a Pacific Northwest that is home to many vibrant, diverse, accessible and inclusive tech communities of caring, actively engaged people. We aspire to serve these communities by facilitating the sharing of resources, knowledge, and experience. We work to build trust and a reputation for excellence among the communities we serve as well as the patrons who support us.

We have guiding principles that inform our decision-making.

Our current program activities include events (Open Source Bridge, BarCamp Portland, Ignite Portland and WhereCampPDX) and stewardship of open source projects Calagator and OpenConferenceWare as well as the Citizen Code of Conduct.

Future planned program activities include local user group support; fiscal sponsorship of related community projects; safety, diversity & inclusion training and support; and more.

Board qualifications & requirements

We welcome applicants from a wide range of backgrounds. Prior non-profit experience is helpful, but not required for being a Syndicate director. You must be able to attend monthly board meetings in person.

We will provide training to help get you up to speed on non-profit issues and related matters. Please apply if you’re interested in furthering our mission even if you don’t think you know enough about running a non-profit.

Serving on a non-profit board in Oregon comes with certain legal obligations, a good overview of which can be found at Oregon’s Attorney General website page about non-profit board service.

Board Responsibilities

  • Participates actively in the running of the organization and communicates frequently and timely with other board members, volunteers and staff.
  • Makes final decisions on policies relation to mission, programs, finances, personnel, and public relations.
  • Provides leadership and expertise with technical needs as identified by executive director and staff: for example, legal, accounting, marketing, and fundraising.
  • Expected to know the mission, history, policies, and programs of the organization.
  • Expected to know the duties the board delegates to staff and/or volunteers.
  • Available to be consulted by staff and/or volunteer consultation on matters of related to the organization.
  • Acts as both an informal and, when requested, formal ambassador and spokesperson for the organization.
  • Hires and evaluates the executive director.
  • Ensures financial support by participating in fundraising planning and activities.
  • With the help of the staff and volunteers, evaluates and updates the work of the organization to ensure that it is meeting its mission.

What we expect from you as a board member

  1. I will give my best effort to “hit the ground running” when beginning my service with the board.
  2. I will learn about the organization’s mission and programs, and be able to describe them accurately.
  3. I understand that the board meets 12 times per year, plus one annual full-day retreat. I will do my best to attend each meeting, with the understanding that three consecutive unexcused absences will be considered resignation from the board. Board meetings may be attended remotely via phone or teleconference by special arrangement. The annual retreat should be attended in person.
  4. I accept fiduciary responsibility for the organization and will oversee its financial health and integrity.
  5. I will provide oversight to ensure that our programs run effectively.
  6. I accept ethical responsibility and will help to hold fellow board members, the executive director (and, by extension, the full staff) to professional standards.
  7. I will serve as an ambassador to the community to educate others and promote our work.
  8. I commit to increasing my skills as a board member.
  9. I will participate in fundraising to ensure that our organization has the resources it needs to meet its mission. Our organization will be one of the top three charities I support each year that I am on the board.
  10. I will evaluate the performance of the executive director.

What board members can expect in return

  1. The organization will provide me a full orientation, including background information on work accomplished to date.
  2. The organization will provide me with relevant materials and education.
  3. I expect board meetings to be well run and productive, with a focus on decision-making, rather than reporting. I understand that agendas will be distributed in advance. If I wish to add items to the agenda, I will contact the chair at least a week in advance.
  4. I expect timely, accurate, and complete financial statements to be distributed at least quarterly, one week in advance of the relevant board meeting. I also expect to be trained to interpret these financial statements.
  5. I expect monthly reports from the executive director, program updates, press clippings, etc.
  6. The organization will provide me with relevant training.
  7. I will need materials and may need training (public speaking, etc.) to do this job effectively.
  8. The organization will provide me with appropriate training and support.
  9. I will be able to choose from a range of fundraising activities, and I expect relevant training and support to help me fulfill my obligations.
  10. Evaluation of the Executive Director will be based on goals developed jointly by the board and the Executive Director.

What is the time commitment?

Directors can expect to spend an average of 3-5 hours a week on Syndicate business.

The term length for directors is 3 years and starts December 1st.

What is the compensation?

Board members are volunteers and are not compensated. Reasonable expenses will be reimbursed (e.g., childcare, transportation, meals, approved training).

Do you carry Directors & Officers insurance?

Yes, we do.

Additionally, as a volunteer board member of an Oregon non-profit, you have “qualified immunity,” as explained by the Attorney General:

To encourage citizens to serve as board members for charities, the law cloaks volunteer board members with qualified immunity. They cannot be sued for negligent acts. They may, however, be subject to lawsuits alleging that a loss was due to their gross negligence, willful or fraudulent acts.

Read more about serving on an Oregon non-profit board here.

Are there any perks to being a Syndicate Director?

Fame and vast opportunities for wealth! Just kidding. There is a certain visibility to being a Director, but the biggest reason for serving is that you get to help make the Portland tech community (and beyond) better and more vibrant.

What are some reasons for serving on the Syndicate board?

Some specific reasons to apply to be on our board:

  • You’ve attended one of our events and it’s been meaningful to you, and you want to see those events continue to happen.
  • You’ve had an idea for a new event or an idea about how to improve an event we’re already doing.
  • You’d like to make our community even more welcoming and supportive by improving safety, diversity and inclusion.
  • You’d like to see Calagator or OpenConferenceWare continue to improve and thrive. You’d like to support Outreachy or other interns contributing to these projects.
  • You’d like to see another Portland Tech Workshop happen. Maybe more than one?
  • You’d like to help us figure out how to fundraise enough so that more people can get paid to work on our events and so that we can have a scholarship fund to bring anyone who wants to attend one of our events can do so.

How to Apply & Application Deadline

We encourage all those who are interested to apply no later than 11:59pm PDT on 19 October, 2016 here:

https://stumptownsyndicate.wufoo.com/forms/stumptown-syndicate-board-member-application-2016/

Questions? Email the board: board@stumptownsyndicate.org.

We look forward to hearing from you!

.

Welcome 2016 Board of Directors

At the end of November, we held elections for our Board of Directors. We received an overwhelming number of excellent applications; thank you to everyone who applied!

We’re pleased to announce the following new Stumptown Syndicate board members, who have committed to serving three-year terms: Briar Rose Schreiber, Parker Harris Emerson, Ed Groth, Lennon Day-Reynolds, Elea Chang, and Thursday Bram.

Christie Koehler and Reid Beels will continue serving the remainder of their three-year terms.

Kirsten Comandich completed her three-year term and is taking a break from board service. We’re hugely thankful for her dedicated service for these last several years, including as Treasurer and Secretary.

Chuck Lauer Vose stepped down from the board late last year to concentrate on other things. Thanks also to Chuck for his service!

Read on to learn more about our new board members.

Briar Rose Schreiber (President)

Briar is a software engineer and community activist. She organizes meet ups and builds technology focused on bringing technical knowledge and opportunities to underprivileged groups. Some of the projects she works on are CryptoParty, RefugeRestrooms, and activist SMS text loops.

Parker Harris Emerson (Secretary)

Parker Harris Emerson loves code almost as much as he loves communities. He is currently getting an MSCS at Portland State University, focusing on databases, machine learning, and transit analytics. In a past life he was a lawyer, but most of those functions have been deprecated.

Ed Groth

Ed Groth has been working with open source software for nearly 20 years, and is a member of the Linux, Python, and Clojure communities. He fell in love with the inclusive and friendly environment of bar camp and open source bridge and has been hooked ever since. When not coding, Ed can be found riding his bike to the coast.

Lennon Day-Reynolds

Lennon Day-Reynolds is a Portland native who has worked for startups, non-profits, and established tech companies in Portland and the San Francisco Bay Area since the late 90s. He currently works on product engineering at Stripe and has previously written code and managed teams at Twitter, Urban Airship, Sun Microsystems, Dark Horse Comics, and others.

Outside of work, Lennon was an early member of the Portland Ruby Brigade and has worked on technology outreach, support, and training at the Oregon Bus Project and Reed College.

Elea Chang

Elea is a product designer and community organizer. She thinks about usability, works to improve tech culture, and founded Affect, a conference about the work and design behind social good. When not in front of the computer, Elea might be reading, traveling, or trying to make music.

Thursday Bram

Thursday Bram writes about technology, design, and inclusivity. She organizes PyDX and other events in Portland, Oregon. You can find Thursday online at www.thursdaybram.com or twitter.com/thursdayb.

 

 

Seeking Board Members (Applications due 31 October)

Stumptown Syndicate, the organization behind Open Source Bridge and other local tech events such as BarCamp Portland, Ignite Portland and WhereCampPDX, is seeking applicants to fill at least two open positions on our Board of Directors.

Read on for details and then apply here. Applications close 11:59pm PDT on 31 October, 2015.

About Stumptown Syndicate

Stumptown Syndicate’s mission is to create positive social change by supporting resilient, inclusive tech and maker communities.

We envision a Pacific Northwest that is home to many vibrant, diverse, accessible and inclusive tech communities of caring, actively engaged people. We aspire to serve these communities by facilitating the sharing of resources, knowledge, and experience. We work to build trust and a reputation for excellence among the communities we serve as well as the patrons who support us.

We have guiding principles that inform our decision-making.

Our current program activities include events (Open Source Bridge, BarCamp Portland, Ignite Portland and WhereCampPDX) and stewardship of open source projects Calagator and OpenConferenceWare as well as the Citizen Code of Conduct.

Future planned program activities include local user group support; fiscal sponsorship of related community projects; safety, diversity & inclusion training and support; and more.

We would like to hire a paid Executive Director in early 2016. As a director, you will be a part of the recruitment and selection process.

Board qualifications & requirements

There are no specific requirements for being a Syndicate Director. Prior non-profit experience is helpful, but not required. You must be able to attend monthly board meetings, either in person or via teleconference. You do not have to live near Portland, Oregon.

We will provide training to help get you up to speed on non-profit issues and related matters. Please apply if you’re interested in furthering our mission even if you don’t think you know enough about running a non-profit.

Serving on a non-profit board in Oregon comes with certain legal obligations, a good overview of which can be found at Oregon’s Attorney General website page about non-profit board service.

Board Responsibilities

  • Makes final decisions on policies relation to mission, programs, finances, personnel, and public relations.
  • Provides leadership and expertise with technical needs as identified by executive director and staff: for example, legal, accounting, marketing, and fundraising.
  • Expected to know the mission, history, policies, and programs of the organization.
  • Expected to know the duties the board delegates to staff and/or volunteers.
  • Available to be consulted by staff and/or volunteer consultation on matters of related to the organization.
  • Acts as both an informal and, when requested, formal ambassador and spokesperson for the organization.
  • Hires and evaluates the executive director.
  • Ensures financial support by participating in fundraising planning and activities.
  • With the help of the staff and volunteers, evaluates and updates the work of the organization to ensure that it is meeting its mission.

What we expect from you as a board member

  1. I will give my best effort to “hit the ground running” when beginning my service with the board.
  2. I will learn about the organization’s mission and programs, and be able to describe them accurately.
  3. I understand that the board meets 12 times per year, plus one annual full-day retreat. I will do my best to attend each meeting, with the understanding that three consecutive unexcused absences will be considered resignation from the board. Board meetings may be attended remotely via phone or teleconference. The annual retreat should be attended in person.
  4. I accept fiduciary responsibility for the organization and will oversee its financial health and integrity.
  5. I will provide oversight to ensure that our programs run effectively.
  6. I accept ethical responsibility and will help to hold fellow board members, the executive director (and, by extension, the full staff) to professional standards.
  7. I will serve as an ambassador to the community to educate others and promote our work.
  8. I commit to increasing my skills as a board member.
  9. I will participate in fundraising to ensure that our organization has the resources it needs to meet its mission. Our organization will be one of the top three charities I support each year that I am on the board.
  10. I will evaluate the performance of the executive director.

What board members can expect in return

  1. The organization will provide me a full orientation, including background information on work accomplished to date.
  2. The organization will provide me with relevant materials and education.
  3. I expect board meetings to be well run and productive, with a focus on decision-making, rather than reporting. I understand that agendas will be distributed at least one week in advance. If I wish to add items to the agenda, I will contact the chair at least two weeks in advance.
  4. I expect timely, accurate, and complete financial statements to be distributed at least quarterly, one week in advance of the relevant board meeting. I also expect to be trained to interpret these financial statements.
  5. I expect monthly reports from the executive director, program updates, press clippings, etc.
  6. The organization will provide me with relevant training.
  7. I will need materials and may need training (public speaking, etc.) to do this job effectively.
  8. The organization will provide me with appropriate training and support.
  9. I will be able to choose from a range of fundraising activities, and I expect relevant training and support to help me fulfill my obligations.
  10. Evaluation of the E.D. will be based on goals developed jointly by the board and the E.D.

What is the time commitment?

Directors can expect to spend an average of 2-5 hours a week on Syndicate business.

The term length for directors is 3 years and starts December 1st.

What is the compensation?

Board members are volunteers and are not compensated. Reasonable expenses will be reimbursed (e.g., childcare, transportation, meals, approved training).

Do you carry Directors & Officers insurance?

Yes, we do.

Additionally, as a volunteer board member of an Oregon non-profit, you have “qualified immunity,” as explained by the Attorney General:

To encourage citizens to serve as board members for charities, the law cloaks volunteer board members with qualified immunity. They cannot be sued for negligent acts. They may, however, be subject to lawsuits alleging that a loss was due to their gross negligence, willful or fraudulent acts.

Read more about serving on an Oregon non-profit board here.

Are they any perks to being a Syndicate Director?

Fame and vast opportunities for wealth! Just kidding. There is a certain visibility to being a Director, but the biggest reason for serving is that you get to help make the Portland tech community (and beyond) better and more vibrant.

What are some reasons for serving on the Syndicate board?

Some specific reasons to apply to be on our board:

  • You’ve attended one of our events and it’s been meaningful to you, and you want to see those events continue to happen.
  • You’ve had an idea for a new event or an idea about how to improve an event we’re already doing.
  • You’d like to make our community even more welcoming and supportive by improving safety, diversity and inclusion.
  • You’d like to see Calagator or OpenConferenceWare continue to improve and thrive. You’d like to support Outreachy or other interns contributing to these projects.
  • You’d like to see another Portland Tech Workshop happen. Maybe more than one?
  • You’d like to help us figure out how to fundraise enough so that more people can get paid to work on our events and so that we can have a scholarship fund to bring anyone who wants to attend one of our events can do so.

How to Apply & Application Deadline

We encourage all those who are interested to apply no later than 11:59pm PDT on 31 October, 2015 here:

https://stumptownsyndicate.wufoo.com/forms/stumptown-syndicate-board-member-application/

Questions? Email the board: board@stumptownsyndicate.org.

We look forward to hearing from you!

.