Revision 98 as of 2015-05-06 16:44:58

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Candidates for the 2015 PSF Board of Directors

The following people have been nominated as Directors of the Python Software Foundation for the term beginning in May 2015. Their self-written summaries follow.

The specific dates of relevance to the election are:

There are currently 11 seats on the Board of Directors (last changed in the 2012 PSF Members vote).

Registering as a PSF Board candidate

To register as a candidate for the Board elections, add your nomination to this page using the format listed at the end of the page. We'd like as many groups within the PSF membership as possible to have the option of electing candidates that can directly represent their interests in Board discussions, so if there's someone you'd particularly like to have represent you, you may want to consider getting in touch with them and (politely!) asking if they'd be interested in nominating themselves.

While the overall time commitment will vary based on whether or not a Board member chooses to take on additional organizational responsibilities, candidates should be prepared to commit at least a few hours each week to assisting in managing the overall affairs of the Python Software Foundation (this is primarily a combination of mailing list discussions and 2x 1 hour IRC+teleconference based Board meetings each month. The Board quorum requirements are designed to handle the fact that not every Director will be able to make every Board meeting, especially given a global Board spanning a wide range of time zones).

Please note that the PSF bylaws require that Board candidates disclose significant organizational affiliations (for example, their employer).

Note: As other attempted solutions to eliminating spam attacks on the wiki have to date proven to be ineffective, please follow the instructions on the FrontPage to gain wiki edit access. (For technically inclined users interested in improving the overall wiki user experience, you may want to consider joining the pydotorg-www mailing list, the group that volunteers to maintain this wiki and a number of other services)

Registering to vote on PSF ballots

While PSF Membership is open to anyone that chooses to join, Basic Members are not entitled to vote on PSF ballots, including Board elections. In accordance with the bylaws, the following PSF Members are entitled to vote on PSF ballots:

To register as a Managing or Contributing member, refer to this post on the PSF blog.

To register as a Supporting Member, please use the PSF Associate Membership site.

PSF Fellows and Sponsor Members must themselves be approved through a PSF ballot, and thus only existing Fellows and Sponsor Delegates will be entitled to vote on the upcoming ballot.

Carrie Anne Philbin

New Board Member.

I'm an award winning secondary Computing & ICT Teacher, Author, and YouTuber from the UK. I currently lead the education mission for the Raspberry Pi Foundation. I am the author of 'Adventures in Raspberry Pi' a computing book for teenagers wanting to get started with Raspberry Pi and programming (including Python). Winner of Teach Secondary magazine's Technology & Innovation Best Author award 2014 and Talk Talk's Digital Hero Award in 2013.

In 2011 I started a journey from teaching an uninspiring curriculum that showed young people how to consume technology to leading the Raspberry Pi Foundation's education mission to advance the education of adults and children in the fields of computing, computer science and related subjects. This would not have been possible without the Python community. I talked about this in my Pycon UK keynote called 'Miss-adventures in Raspberry Pi' which you can watch here. I think this gives some insight into what drives me. This year I'll be giving talks at both EuroPython and Pycon Australia, as both conferences begin to introduce education mini conferences.

For possibly the first time, the UK is leading the way in transforming the education curriculum, introducing computer science at the age of 5 and forms an integral part of learning throughout a child's school life. I believe that Python has the potential to be the text based programming language used in education worldwide. It is rapidly becoming the language of choice in schools across the UK. The Python community has been at the heart of this, creating free and open libraries that make computing accessible, and more importantly creative and fun. Two stand out examples would be the RPi.GPIO library, and Minecraft Pi API. The first, RPi.GPIO was created so that the GPIO pins on a Raspberry Pi could be programmed with Python, initially to brew beer, but quickly adopted by makers and educators and now forms an integral part of the Foundation's free learning resources. The Minecraft Pi API allows anyone to program something to happen in the minecraft world with Python. Want to make a house appear, rather than building one? A few lines of code makes this happen. Want that house to follow you around the map, a few more lines of code will make that happen. I can't think of any tool more powerful to hook children's playful, imaginative and creative minds.

This is a great starting point, but I'd like to serve the PSF to help highlight great python education projects but also highlight where support is needed by the community. I'd like to help foster a wider conversation between industry experts, programmers and educators. I'd like to bring more teachers into the PSF.

I am the creator of a YouTube video series for teenage girls called The Geek Gurl Diaries. The episodes include interviews with women working in technology and hands on computer science based tutorials to inspire young people, particularly girls into STEM subjects and hopefully careers. In my role as Vice-Chair of Computing At Schools diversity initiative called #include, I help to organise and run conferences and hack days for teachers and industry experts to make computer science accessible to all regardless of gender, ethnicity, social economic status, special educational needs or disability. I would like to bring what I've learned from this experience to support the PSF.

Affiliation: Raspberry Pi Foundation

Marc-Andre Lemburg

2014 Board Member.

I've been board member in the years 2002-2004 and then again since 2010.

PSF things I've been working on in 2014/2015:

in addition to the usual PSF board and trademark committee work.

Things I'd like to focus on for 2015/2016:

  • integrate the PSF more into the global Python community and make it's organizational structures more diverse and international
  • help create a friendly, cheerful and open PSF community, where people can share their projects, ask for help, get others excited or simply hang out, without having to deal with the formalisms that come with a large organization as the PSF
  • make more use of the new PSF work group setup and work out the organizational details for this
  • push for getting the website setup with a real CMS in order to attract more content contributors and maintainers
  • create a marketing work group to (a) develop a more diverse marketing strategy for Python which doesn't only focus on developers, (b) create more marketing material and tools to enable Python user groups and evangelists to better promote Python in their local and professional settings, and (c) create more Python merchandise
  • rewrite the Python trademark policy to make it more readable and straight forward
  • get the PSF to adopt more community friendly PyPI terms & conditions
  • if we can get PSF funding, help create a second volume of the PSF Python Brochure

I'd like to continue my work as director and look forward to another year serving on the board.

Other Python community projects I'm involved in:

If you want to see more details about what I've done for the Python community, please see my wiki home page.

Affiliation: GmbH, Germany

Alex Gaynor

2014 Board Member

I've served as a board member for the past two years.

In the last year, here are some of the things I've worked on:

  • Served as a member of the PSF Sprints and Outreach and Education committees
  • Collaborated with the infrastructure committee on a variety of projects
  • Served as co-chair of the PyCon program committee

Affiliation: I'm employed by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs

Nick Coghlan

2014 Board Member.

I have been a part of the Python community for more than a decade, a CPython core developer since 2005, and a member of the Board of Directors since 2014.

As a PSF board member, my two primary concerns would be addressing the challenges the PSF faces around volunteer burnout (including for Board members), as well as continuing to address the long term structural risks potentially impacting the sustainable operation of PSF provided infrastructure and services.

Key perspectives I believe I bring to Board discussions:

  • Experienced CPython core developer
  • Heavily involved in the Python software distribution & deployment ecosystem
  • Employed by a major commercial redistributor of Python
  • Professional training and experience in infrastructural risk management

Specific initiatives I would personally be aiming to advocate for and participate in over the 2015/2016 Board term include:

  • Providing additional community visibility into the ongoing activities of the PSF Board through the Strategic Decision Making Process proposal
  • Enhancing the PSF's ability to suitably recognise contributions to the broader Python community through the updated PSF Fellowship Recognition Program proposal
  • Providing a more constructive framework for discussions regarding the allocation of PSF funds and effective direction of volunteer time and energy by capturing and clearly documenting agreed strategic priorities for the PSF (which also includes clearly documenting things the PSF isn't doing itself, as other organisations are better positioned to handle them)
  • Working with the PSF Events Coordinator and other PSF Directors to finalise and publish the "International PyCon Prospectus" (a proposal developed in collaboration with a number of conferences the PSF has previously sponsored). The intent of this proposal is to allow other organisations to easily sponsor multiple regional conferences via the PSF, rather than having to arrange payment individually with each conference throughout the year
  • Working with Selena Deckelmann on a Strategic Hiring Plan proposal for the PSF, with the aim of enhancing the PSF's core staff and volunteer management capabilities to help reduce the incidence of volunteer burnout within the Python community

Affiliation: Nick Coghlan works for Red Hat.

Kushal Das

2014 Board Member

I have been a part of the Python community for 9+ years now, I am also a member of Board of Directors from 2014, and CPython core developer.

Things I did in 2014:

  • I am a part of PyCon US organisers, work in various roles before and during the conference days. The developer sprints (last 4 days) is my primary responsibility. Many of you may have seen me running around during the conference.
  • Gave the keynote in PyCon India about contribution, and building up the community.
  • Organized one PSF members meeting during PyCon India.
  • Wrote couple of blog posts for PSF blog.
  • I am also one of the org-admin for PSF project under GSoC.
  • Organized, and ran the dgplug summer training for almost 3 months, where we build up upstream contributors, Python is the primary tool of choice for this training. In 2014 there were 150 students attended the sessions regularly. This project has a very high rate of women participation.
  • Worked with other students to bring them into the upstream community.
  • Helped in the CPython sprint during PyCon development sprints.
  • Working on moving my python book on Python3 to make sure the new contributors get it easy to start with.

New things I want to work on 2015:

  • I am working a better CI system which can be consumed by upstream CPython (and then other implementations) for untested patches.
  • Making the PSF much more approachable for the new contributors.
  • Working on the global Python communities to make a closer relation with PSF.

I'd like to continue my work as director and I am looking forward serve the global community.

Affiliation: Kushal Das works for Red Hat.

Berker Peksag

New Board Member

I'm a core developer on CPython, Gunicorn, GNU MediaGoblin and Hylang projects.

In addition to my CPython Core Developer duties I've also:

  • selected as a PSF Contributing Member
  • helped to launch the new Python Job Board
  • overhauled the contributing documentation of (currently in docs/ directory, will be on Read the Docs)
  • working on switching from Chef to Ansible in provisioning of (the WIP branch is here)
  • helping maintaining of
  • working as a PEP editor

You can also see my work on at the following links:

I'm also a regular contributor to the Django project and selected as a Fellow by Django Software Foundation in 2014:

I'm currently living in Istanbul, Turkey and am co-founder of Python Istanbul. We have organized a Python and JavaScript conference called JsPyConf in 2013.

Currently, I'm part of the Debian Python 3 Porting effort.

I'd like to work on:

  • Create a healthy and diverse development community
  • Promote Python 3 porting efforts

Affiliation: None

Stéphane Wirtel

New Board Member

  • organiser of the PythonFOSDEM 2013, 2014 and 2015 in Brussels during FOSDEM
  • committer on Gunicorn
  • Starter Contributor to CPython
  • PSF Fellow
  • EuroPython Society Member
  • Association Francophone de Python (AFPy) Member
  • Volunteers for EuroPython 2015
  • Participate to the Python meetups in Belgium.
  • Former Core dev of Odoo (formerly OpenERP) (6y)
  • Started to use Python with Aragne in Belgium (EuroPython 2002 and 2003)

I'm currently living in Charleroi, Belgium.

I'd like to work on:

  • Help for the promotion of Python during the events and the meetups
  • Help for the brochures of the PSF
  • Work on the events and the coordination of the events
  • Increase the Python Community
  • Work on the donation process
  • Create a marketing workgroup with Marc-André Lemburg
  • Create more Python merchandise (t-shirts, hats, snake ...)
  • In February and April 2015, I have printed some flyers for the donation and the membership for the PSF

Affiliation: Freelance , Belgium

Philip James

New board member

My main contributions to the Python community in the past year have been speaking at PyCon 2015, assisting with a tutorial at PyCon 2015, and general local efforts in the San Francisco Bay Area training new Python developers and encouraging contributions to open source projects. I was a member of the PyCon Program Committee for 2013 and 2014.

The additional experience I bring is in the form of four years spent in Senate at my university, with two of those years as Senate Chair, as well as my years developing large Python codebases at various companies.

I would like to do whatever I can to strengthen the Python community, and ensure its future as a inclusive and welcoming place for all.

Affiliation: Philip James works for Eventbrite

Ashwini Oruganti

New Board Member.

I love the Python community, and I have learnt a lot from it. I want to be an active leader in its journey towards becoming a bigger and more diverse place for everyone in the world.

  • I have been a long time Twisted core developer. I started out as a mentee, and grew to be a mentor to new Twisted contributors, through the Google Summer of Code programs under the PSF umbrella.
  • I worked on HippyVM, a high-performance PHP Virtual Machine using the PyPy toolchain. I built the technical underpinnings that made it possible to run two major open source content management systems through Hippy:­­ WordPress and MediaWiki.
  • I am the author of Python Cryptographic Authority’s TLS, an easy-to-use, opinionated, and secure TLS 1.2 implementation in Python. I was awarded the Stripe’s Open Source Retreat grant for this project.
  • As a member of the PyCon 2015 program committee, I reviewed and helped select talk proposals.
  • I am the Financial Aid Chair for PyCon 2016. I will be leading the Financial Aid committee in spreading the funding to provide assistance to and cover expenses (such as reimbursement for travel, lodging in the various conference hotels, or the conference admission) of as many applicants as possible.
  • I have been speaking, mentoring, and volunteering at regional and international Python conferences and events, such as, PyCon North America 2013, 2014, and 2015, PyCon Dublin 2013, PyTennessee 2015.

As the Python user base and community grows, there have been some hiccups along the way. My goals are to:

  • create a more diverse and welcoming community, with more initiatives and a diverse perspective respectful to all cultures, both geographical and social. I grew up in India and have collaborated with open source developers across the US, Europe, and South Africa. I have personal cross-cultural experience required for achieving this goal.
  • work on bringing more transparency in the processes, mailing lists, and activities of the Foundation, so as to encourage better and more diverse participation.
  • encourage, support, and lead global community development, support more Python conferences and events, as well as provide assistance to a diverse audience in attending said events.

Affiliation: I will be joining Eventbrite in May 2015.

Ruben Orduz

New Board Member

  • PyCon US tutorials co-chair for the last two years ('14 and '15), will remain so until at least PyCon 2016.
    • In charge of instructor outreach, tutorials CFP, volunteer recruiting, voting rules, voting direction, instructor, category split, scheduling, instructor feedback, general instructor support, on-site direction and assitance
    • Managed 36 tutorials and their successful completion
    • Over 1700 attendees.
    • Over $200,000 in generated revenue in '15 alone.
  • Looking to serve the PSF in other and more direct ways.

Affiliation: works for Infor, inc

Mathieu Virbel

New Board Member.

I'm a Full stack developer, with a deep love for Python since 2007. My main contributions are done for bringing Python to the mobile stack:

  • the UI: Kivy
  • the toolchain for compiling Python for mobile: python-for-android, kivy-ios, buildozer
  • libraries to communicate with mobile language/API: pyjnius (Java) and pyobjus (Objc)
  • gather everything to simply communicate with python mobile: plyer

And thousands of contributions on various projects, as well as less-know project like condiment,

In the past few years, i've also:

  • given few talks on EuroPython, Pycon, RMLL, FITG
  • been a Google Summer of Code mentor since 2008 via Nuigroup then the PSF
  • been invited twice in the Ubuntu Summit for multitouch expertise
  • been president of Nekeme, an organisation for promoting Opensource / free games
  • currently President of the Kivy organisation

I would like to bring more attention on Python for mobile, as still many peoples doesn't even know that it is possible, and what the language can do for them.

Affiliation: Freelance.

Lynn Root

  • 2014 Board Member *

Lynn has been a PSF board member since 2013, a member of the PSF Outreach and Education committee since 2012, the Django Software Foundation liaison for grants & coordination, and continues to lead the PyLadies of San Francisco since 2012. She currently leads the development and growth of the global organization of PyLadies, including helping other locations starting a local PyLadies, maintaining, and other repositories under the pyladies account. Lynn is also helped organize PyCon 2015 by leading the lightning talks segment and PyLadies presence at the conference.

Lynn wishes to be a board member for the next year to accomplish the following things:

  • Broadening the PSF's reach in diversity,
  • Coordinating with the Django Software Foundation in diversity initiatives with grants, and
  • Finding more PSF/PyCon sponsors that align with the PSF's diversity mission.

Affiliation: Spotify, PyLadies

Anna Ossowski

New Board Member.

I love the Python community with all my heart! I recently wrote a blog post about the awesome things the Python community has done for me and what a positive impact it had on my life. I would like to help maintain this positive environment and make it even better. I am very passionate about diversity and community outreach and would like to encourage more people of underrepresented groups, especially women, to learn programming in Python, attend conferences, and get involved in the community because it’s awesome!

A little bit about me:

  • I am very involved in Django Girls. I am a Django Girls organizer (co-organized Django Girls Budapest and Django Girls @ PyCon 2015, more events in the making) and also run the “Your Django Story“ interview series on the Django Girls blog where I highlight one awesome woman and her work each week. I also mentor women in my free time and help other Django Girls organizers make their events awesome.
  • I spoke for the first time at this year’s PyTennessee about “Django Girls: A success story“. I plan on speaking at more meet-ups and conferences in the future.
  • I am a member of the Django Software Foundation grants committee and recently created a draft for the new DSF grants policy.
  • I helped review/select talks for PyCon 2015 as a member of the program committee.
  • I will join the tutorial committee for PyCon 2016.
  • I am currently working on building the “PyLadies Remote“ chapter with online content for everyone who doesn’t live near a PyLadies chapter and therefore doesn’t have the possibility to attend meet-ups.
  • I will help with diversity work for the Open Tech School conference in Dortmund, Germany in August this year.
  • I write a series called “Understanding Computer Words“ for programming beginners on my blog. It is important to me to help beginners and encourage them on their programming learning journey.

What I would like to work on:

  • Increase and broaden the PSF’s diversity efforts. I would like to keep working on bringing more women into the community but also extend the diversity work to increase the diversity of other underrepresented groups in the Python community.
  • Find more financial aid sponsors and work on extending the financial aid program. If it wasn’t for the great financial aid programs I wouldn’t have been able to attend conferences and get involved in the community. It is important to me to support as many people as possible and make it possible for them to attend conferences. I would also like to explore how the PSF could help smaller and regional Python conferences offer financial aid to their attendees.
  • Help with the communication between PSF and DSF as far as grants etc. are concerned.
  • Explore how the PSF can support educational programs like Django Girls more. As a self-taught programmer workshops like Django Girls have really helped me gain new skills and support on my programming journey. I believe that educational programs like Django Girls are one of the best ways to increase diversity and bring more people into the Python community.
  • Lead initiatives to help Python users in remote areas without access to user groups.
  • Help increase the PSF's global/international reach.
  • Help make the PSF’s processes more transparent and increase/improve communication with the community.

Affiliation: Django Girls, PyLadies

Diana Clarke

New Board Member

Over the past 3 years, I have chaired or co-chaired 5 PyCons. As I step down as PyCon chair, I look forward to serving the PSF and the Python community in new ways.

  • PyCon US 2015 Chair
  • PyCon US 2014 Chair
  • PyCon US 2013 Co-Chair
  • PyCon Canada 2013 Co-Chair
  • PyCon Canada 2012 Chair

Affiliation: r/ally Inc.

Naomi Ceder

New Board Member

I've been using, promoting and teaching Python on various levels since 2000, as a teacher, author, developer, manager, and organizer.

  • Founded Trans*Code, the first hackday series in Europe and UK to exclusively focus on issues of the transgender community
  • Served on the Code of Conduct response committee at EuroPython 2014
  • Presenter at the Education Track at PyCon UK 2014
  • On organizing committee for PyCon UK 2015, working on diversity and outreach.
  • Co-chair of PyCon Sprints in 2015 and organized the first PyCon Intro to Sprinting workshop (presented by Open Hatch)
  • Created/coordinated the first two education summits at PyCon, which each had about 80 attendees from all areas of Python education.
  • Created the poster session at PyCon and coordinated it for 3 years
  • Author of The Quick Python Book, 2nd ed., which was Manning Publications' number 2 selling book in 2012 and in the top 10 sellers over all for the past few years.
  • Presenter of various Python talks and tutorials in USA and Europe, including talks at PyCon, EuroPython, and PyCon UK. I have taught Python to teachers, system admins, kids, newcomers to Python and programming, etc.
  • Currently based in London, UK. Work with Python developers in USA, UK, Germany, Japan, China.

As IT director/architect of a company that runs on Python I'm very interested in the long term health and growth of Python and the Python community, and my personal circumstances have given me some very personal experience with diversity and inclusion from several different, and even contradictory, perspectives. I know well what it's like both to be privileged and marginalized simply because of who I am.

My goals for 2015/2016 as a board member would be to do all that I can to help the PSF achieve its mission in any way that I can. In particular, I'm interested in:

  • Foster Diversity - Diversity means more than increasing the numbers of women or nationalities (though both of those are important) - it involves thinking about a wide range of axes - race, ethnicity, disability, neurodiversity, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, economic background, etc. I want to ensure that the Python community is as inclusive and welcoming as possible along all of those axes and more.
  • Develop New Leaders - I believe that for an organization to be inclusive thought and effort must be put into opening all aspects to new people. My practice has been to deliberately hand off projects I've started as soon as practical once they are established.
  • Support Education - Support for education is more than funding workshops - I'd like to encourage initiatives to improve pedagogy, tools, and resources for the various groups teaching Python.
  • Evolve PSF management - As the community grows, the role of the PSF board needs to adapt. I support changes to make the PSF board have more of an oversight role and to develop other means to handle managerial and executive duties.

Finally, perhaps the best qualification I can offer is that once committed to something like this, I'm excruciatingly reliable - I absolutely hate to miss meetings or deadlines, and I make sure tasks I'm assigned "just get done."

Affiliation: Razor Occam LTD (W. W. Grainger), Trans*Code

Van Lindberg

2014 Board Member

I've been involved with the PSF for about nine years now, serving as a chair or co-chair of PyCon US, outside counsel for the PSF, and most recently a board member and chairman of the board of the PSF. I recently described a lot of what the PSF does. Personally, I try to focus on things that are lost in the weeds but need to get done. I want to make sure that the operational infrastructure of the PSF keeps working. Kindness and professionalism are also important to me, and I strive to both model those characteristics and encourage them in the broader Python community.

My goals for the next year:

  • Develop our capacity: We have reached the point where our operational capabilities are being strained. I want to make sure that both Ewa (PSF Secretary, logistical planner, and all-around doer) and Kurt (PSF Treasurer) have backup. This is the most important thing we can accomplish this upcoming year.
  • Support Python in education: We have a huge opportunity to introduce Python to an entire new generation. I'm working with a number of different organizations to provide free, open-licensed teaching materials that help people use Python to teach computing. Also, in conjunction with the Python in UK Education working group, the PSF is an official supporter for the BBC Microbit, a Python- programmable miniature development board that will be released later this year. These are ongoing and important efforts that I want to continue.

I also want to continue the following:

  • Trademark management: Over the past year, I have helped make sure that the "Python," "PyCon," "PyLadies," and two-snakes logos are trademarked or under trademark examination in multiple jurisdictions worldwide. This work is ongoing, and I want to continue it. It is necessary to make sure that "Python" and the other marks of our community aren't misused.
  • Support for local conferences: This year we were able to help a number of local conferences with logistics and financing. We are putting together an international sponsorship package that will help make it easier for corporate sponsors to support more conferences in more places. This is a tricky legal, financial, and social project, but I think it can help grow the community worldwide.
  • Work on pydotorg: I have been working to continue the development of pydotorg for the past 6-8 months, after it had been left aside for a while. The current work is on making it easier for many people to contribute content, identifying "owners" for portions of the website so that they don't go out of date, and moving the whole infrastructure (including design) to public github.

Affiliation: Rackspace

Ezio Melotti

New Board Member

(Nominated by anatoly techtonik)

Anatoly statement:

  1. You need people who represent younger generation
  2. You need people from outside of US
  3. You need people who actually send patches to upstream projects that power Python infrastructure
  4. For pydotorg you need people who get the role of JavaScript and web interfaces in modern world

It is also only the person who cares not only about own interests, and therefore has this recommendation from some of the most tough members of community, which also proves good communication skills.

My self summary:

  • Python core developer since 2009;
  • Maintainer of the html package of the stdlib;
  • Maintainer of the bug tracker at;
  • Roundup core developer;
  • GSoC mentor (and past GSoC student) for the PSF;
  • Technical member of the Italian Mars Society;
  • Taught Python programming at the Turku University of Applied Sciences;
  • Helped organizing several sprints and events during EuroPython, Pycon Italy, Pycon Finland, and with the Helsinki PyLadies and Python Turku.

Riaz Moola

New Board Member

(Nominated by David Mertz)

David Mertz statement in support: Riaz has done a series of amazing training and outreach efforts to disadvantaged groups in South Africa, including educationally underserved students generally, and a new program for prisoners and former prisoners who can gain skill with programming education. He is ambitious, driven, conscientious, and already (at a young age) a leading light of outreach and education

I am a South African citizen, and permanently reside in the city of Durban. In my first year of my undergraduate degree, I studied at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) in Durban at a campus previously open to only non-white students during Apartheid (and hence the only university my parents were allowed to study at). Only 200 out of approximately 1000 of my Computer Science classmates in first semester made it to the second semester of studies, and even fewer into the second year. The lack of foundational IT knowledge was astounding, and I became even more aware of it when I participated in an exchange programme with Keele University in England during my third semester.

During my second year of studies, I was introduced to Python and felt strongly about its potential to help new programmers learn fundamental concepts. In July 2012, I founded the organisation Hyperion Development (, created a simple online course and website, and returned to the UKZN classes I had previously taken, urging students to sign up. In April 2015:

  • Hyperion is now the largest online course platform for aspiring programmers in South Africa, with several thousand users that come from approximately 95% of all tertiary institutions in South Africa.
  • Hyperion is entirely run and managed by a team of part-time university students based in the UK and SA. The team size has been between 20 and 40 members, selected from a pool of >250 applicants. I oversee 5 teams maintaining 7 courses (with a focus on Python and C++), with team members based in 8 cities.
  • We were awarded a UK Open Source Award, an Innovation Initiative Grant from the University of Edinburgh Development Trust, four grants from the Python Software Foundation (July/August 2013, June 2014, January 2015), invited as speakers at the first PyCon in South Africa.
  • We have worked to improve IT standards at a high school level, by training nearly half of all Information Technology high school teachers in South Africa in a series of workshops delivered in Cape Town and Durban for the South African Department of Education, with funding from Oracle, and building and installing 50 'Hyperion Boxes' - a low cost computer built from Raspberry Pi's - in 6 rural schools serving disadvantaged populations in rural South Africa - working with the South African Department of Wildlife and Agriculture.
  • Hyperion is now recognised as a leading provider of Python training in South Africa, with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (the largest R+D organisation in Africa) choosing us to deliver 6 workshops in Python (beginner, intermediate, advanced) for a total of 120 attendees to train their researchers in Python. 3 of these workshops have now been delivered, with excellent feedback.
  • Our team of student programmers, ranging from first year to PhD students, have built the Hyperion 'Virtual Learning Environment' which is adapted to the needs of SA students. We ensure that our course can be taken by students with limited access to internet and computers, that additional support mechanisms are in place on campuses across the country.

My goals for 2015/16 are aligned with those of Hyperion and the PSF:

  • There are unparalleled opportunities to help improve the lives of others in Africa, especially in the space of education, and even more so in the space of technical education. I'd like to reach these demographics more, through programmes with local partners. For example, Hyperion has begun working with Brothers For All ( in Cape Town, to reach prisoners in the Western Cape that are seeking to transform their lives through programming education. This initiative is headed by an ex-prisoner. who manages a coding centre in the heart of a township (see:
  • Related to the above is the need for a total reform of high school IT education for thousands in South Africa. During our teacher training projects, we repeatedly pushed for Python to be introduced as the new language to be taught in all high schools. We remain in contact with the two government bodies that oversee IT education in half the country, and see this as a long term goal that is achievable.
  • I'm interested in sustainable but effective models of Python education. Our online Python courses offer a unique level of support, with students teaching other students, and I'd like to see how Python developers and educators around the world can collaborate more to help others learn this language.
  • I'd like to engage more with organisations that are serious about contributing to IT development in Africa. For example, I currently study in a department where the Raspberry Pi was created, yet it has proven exceptionally hard to engage with the Raspberry Pi foundation in a meaningful way to support the above projects. Computer Science, programming, and IT are often not seen as the most urgent needs for those in Africa, hence local funding is scarce. We must connect the international community with the African community to balance the scales of education.

As a member of the PSF board, my involvement in the above projects and access to the Southern African community will extend the reach of the PSF to truly hard to reach places and people that are woefully underrepresented in the community.

Affiliation: I am currently a masters student, reading for a MPhil in Advanced Computer Science as a Gates Scholar at the University of Cambridge. I will intern as a Product Manager at Google this summer.

Roberto Rosario

New Board Member.

Endorsement by AnnaRavenscroft I'd like to provide a hearty endorsement for Roberto Rosario. I met him during Pycon Italia, where he gave the best, bar none, explanation of pygame I've ever seen. He has a lot of organizational experience (worked for the government of Puerto Rico) and is working on organizing the Latin America Python community (where we don't have a strong presence). Roberto has the energy and ability to help the PSF move forward in our quest to take over the world, ahem, I mean, save the world.

My past contributions to the Python community have been as a developer releasing much code into the open. As a speaker, I have participated in DjangoCon, PyCon Italy, DjangoVillage, local Puerto Rico Python meetups and in other non Python events where I promote Python as an alternative such as Transparency Camp. I am a strong proponent of privacy protection and freedom of speech, have participated in panels and created software specifically to promote those goals. I also believe in the power of education and autodidactism and have promoted both at the junior level by direct action and by creating hackable and extendable educational video games using Python and Scratch.

Some of the things I've worked on in the past years:

  • Python pioneer in the Government of Puerto Rico, first as a consumer using it for internal projects since 2007 and then in 2013, creating Python and Django projects as part of my official policy as Director of Software Development for the Government of Puerto Rico.
  • Sponsor of several Django projects: Migrations for Django kickstarter, Django REST Framework kickstarter, multiple template backend project for Django, High Performance Django book, Django Fellowship Program, among others.
  • Primary sponsor of Include Girls, an initiative to increase the participation of women in STEM fields.
  • Pioneer of civic hacking in Puerto Rico by hosting the first government sponsored hackathon.
  • Pioneer of Government Open Data by helping create the policy and by creating the LIBRE API Engine software, based on Django.
  • At my behest, Cryptico Corporation became the first Puerto Rican (and possibly Latin American) Django Software Foundating Corporate Member.
  • Creator of Mayan EDMS, Attack of the Moronians, django-autoadmin, awesome-django, Descartes BI and LIBRE API Engine, protocol designer and core developer of the Open Relay project, a project designed to protect privacy and freedom of speech in the event the SOPA/PIPA legislations were approved.


  • Represent the Latin American Python community.
  • Increase inclusivity of Latin American Python developers and users into the general Python communities.
  • Make PyCon Latin America 2016 in Cuba a reality.
  • Promote projects geared to increase children interest and participation in the Python language and sub projects.

Affiliations: Cryptico Corporation, Python Latino

Carol Willing

New Board Member. (Nominated by Van Lindberg)

VanL: I nominate Carol Willing for the PSF Board. I have been incredibly impressed with Carol since I was first introduced about a year ago. She not only gets things done, but she takes special care to help elevate others and help them get things done too. She is a valuable member of the Python community who would make a great addition to the board.

From Carol's Bio:

Carol is currently a Geek-In-Residence at FabLab San Diego, an active contributor to open source projects, like OpenHatch, and an independent developer of hardware and software. Weaving her love of art, music, and nature with wearable soft circuits, she is developing an open hardware project to assist an in-home caregiver with gentle, compassionate support of a loved one with Alzheimer’s.

Carol earned a BSE in Electrical Engineering from Duke University and an MS in Management from MIT. She has work experience in both small and large companies.

Python-wise, Carol is co-organizer of PyLadies San Diego and the San Diego Python User Group. She was also a PyCon Program Committee member for PyCon 2014 and PyCon 2015, and on the tutorial committee for PyCon 2015. She also has extensive experience with other communities and conferences - see

My Python guiding principles

  • Mahalo: Thank you for sharing your knowledge, creating a wonderful language, and learning along the journey.
  • Change: Is change good or bad relative to the past? Likely neither, the present is simply different than the past.
  • Aloha: Farewell and welcome. Many existing methods, while serving Python well as the community grew, could be improved to meet present and future Python community needs. Does that mean that these older methods are bad? Not necessarily, it's just time to refactor the methods that don't serve us as well now. So, we say a warm Aloha farewell to some things and a respectful Mahalo for what these things have given us.

My commitment to the community

  • Aloha, welcome to Python.
  • Mahalo moves our community to meet the changing times, challenges, and opportunities while honoring our past.
  • Surfs up. Be gracious, listen to each other, and ride the positive waves.


  • Use our unique strengths in scientific computing and data analysis (NumFocus and PyData) to expand our educational outreach.
  • Move toward non-profit best practices for accessibility of information.
  • Foster self organizing teams, simple tools, and workflows to support volunteers.

Affiliation: Willing Consulting

Adria Richards

New Board Member

Building Value Through Data Driven Diversity Efforts

Diversity is not about making events and spaces diverse, it’s about helping people make their interactions with others diverse.

The opportunity for PSF to take an active role to improve the cultural landscape in technology is now. When we invite everyone to help, we can address issues more effectively.

I'm looking to collaborate with others in the Python community as a member of the PSF board to build a successful model for open source that is truly inclusive and diverse where members and leaders reflect that diversity, especially in terms of race, gender, non binary gender orientation, transgender identity as a valid construct, socioeconomic status and neurodiversity which includes autism, dyslexia, ADHD, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety and PTSD.

I want to contribute value-based strategies that engage the Python community to make diversity not only a priority but a reality through active outreach.

  • Creative problem solver of complex technology issues
  • Technology and language agnostic
  • 17 years in technology career delivering effective solutions for business needs
  • Active participant in over 200 tech conferences, hackathons, user and meetup groups and hack nights spanning since 2004

Living at the intersection of diversity and tech

Biracial (Black and Jewish) woman who grew up in a socioeconomically disadvantaged household, moving from the Midwest to the Bay Area to pursue my career goals. Learned how to not only survive but thrive by understanding my neurodiversity, working with it, not against it.

  • Served as PyCon Program Committee Member 2013, 2015
  • Active participant PyCon 2013, 2014, 2015
  • Member of PyLadies SF chapter since 2012
  • Advisor and hackathon mentor for TransH4CK since 2013
  • Founded nonprofit organization in 2014 to close gaps in the technology pipeline
  • Working on pilot teaching tech workers in Silicon Valley how to discard bias in favor of empirical evidence
  • Significant teaching experience and curriculum development for in-person and online classrooms

Youth Hackathon Project

Lead consultant in partnership with The Level Playing Field Institute (LPFI) in 2013 and Black Girls Code in 2014 and 2015 to deliver a series of youth focused hackathons

  • Developed event programming and served as primary contact for logistics
  • Designed age appropriate curriculum and educational objectives.
  • Designed and delivered training to technical mentors on working with youth
  • Defined mentor recruitment strategy
  • Conducted customer development with stakeholders (students, parents, community partners)
  • Administered surveys and aggregated results for qualitative summaries and highlights
  • 85% of girls said they would attend another hackathon
  • 95% of volunteers said they would like to mentor at another hackathon
  • 91% of BGC girls agreed with this statement "My hackathon mentors have careers in technology and can be role models for girls like me"


Support learning opportunities that leverage mentoring and collaboration

  • Being mindful about that everyone's journey to Python is different. How can we rethink the onboarding of new Pythonistas? Not just new to coding but language refugees from PHP, Ruby, ASP/.NET so they stay around? How can we help members level up their mentoring skills? Creating a culture of appreciation for volunteers and their time is an effective way to increase engagement and participation in the Python community.

Create KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) for diversity efforts

  • Measure outcomes against these metrics to evaluate how successful outreach efforts are. Have you noticed how often people are make decisions for others without passing the mic (giving them a chance to speak for themselves)? This lack of input from those we wish to help often delivers solutions that don’t actually help anyone. Let's change this so customer development becomes a central theme in diversity efforts. Increase visibility of senior level women, women of color and People of Color (PoC) working in the industry. Find and lift up these stories of success as a strategy to attract more diversity to the Python community. Creating a safe space to examine, discuss and debug tech culture is long overdue.

Expand PSF sponsored diversity outreach efforts to include broader definition of diversity

  • The growth of PyLadies has been phenomenal with chapters around the country (and world). It has been a beacon of hope for many in the Python community that things are getting better. With time and investment of resources, many more first-time female attendees have come to PyCon in recent years and given talks. It's time to expand this successful model to other historically underrepresented groups and provide more than free conference passes. For those of us with solid networks in tech, connecting all Pythonistas who want to 'level up' their skills to technical mentoring and apprenticeship opportunities would be a game changer.
  • People of Color (PoC)
  • Transgender
  • Living in households where the total incomes is less than $60,000
  • Children in the household qualify for free or reduced lunch

Affiliations: Black Girls Code, Trans*H4CK, Girl Develop IT, Lesbians Who Tech, RailsBridge, LPFI Youth Hackathons

Jackie Kazil

New Board Member

I have three passions, passions that drive most of what I do in life, including the work that I do in the Python community.

  1. Democracy
  2. Diversity
  3. Education


Democracy means representing the people that elect you. This means being led with integrity and objectivity. I have an incredible drive for civic engagement. I am a trained journalist, which is a profession that seeks to empower the people that it serves.


'Diversity' is often associated with gender and race, but diversity should be considered in the following terms (in no order of importance): gender, race, color, sexual preference, income, geography, national origin, differently abled, age, and family status.

The community needs to start taking a more active role in not just making individuals feel welcome, but inviting them into the community by directly reaching out.


My mother, who risked her life to escape Communist Czechoslovakia said, "You can have everything taken away from you... your money, your home, the clothes on your back, but no one can take what is in your head."

My zest for educating others has been long standing. I am working to start two programs in the DC region that teach programming to folks that need skills training. Part of this is also helping with job placement after training.


I want to empower folks in the community to have their voices heard and institute and develop Python educational standards within the PSF.

Things that I have done (specifically in the programming community)

  • Founded PyLadies DC, which has helped seed future growth worldwide.
  • Assisted in development on new PyLadies chapters.
  • PyLadies auction organizer PyCon 2015
  • PyLadies auction helper, Pycon 2014, 2013
  • PyCon Keynote committee 2015
  • Talk or tutorial reviewer for PyCon or Scipy 2013, 2014, 2015
  • PyCon Speaker 2012, 2013, 2015
  • Led accessibility hackathon - #allyhack 2015
  • Leader of DCFemTech
  • Teaches Python in the local community
  • Former leader (now-coorganizer of Django District)
  • Founder of GeoDC
  • Teaches Python journalists through IRE/NICAR, PyJournos, and sometimes Hacks and Hackers
  • Building a Python library w/ fiends on Python library that does agent based modeling

Affiliations: 18F, PyLadies, DCFemTech, PyJournos, IRE/NICAR

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Candidate Name

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