Duties & Responsibilities of PSF Directors
In general, Directors help to fulfill the mission of the PSF; we take responsibility for moving Python and the PSF forward.
Check out the PSF's video titled Life as a Python Software Foundation Director: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLKj6FaQA4M .
Please see the minutes of the monthly Board of Directors meetings for specific actions, decisions, and reports given.
What are the responsibilities of board members?
- Understand and help the PSF fulfill its mission. When necessary, help determine any changes or updates that need to happen to the mission.
- Stay on top of communications (emails, blogs, reports) and engage in discussions
- Support & evaluate the Executive Director. When necessary, help select a person for this role.
- Help with strategic planning
- Monitor and strengthen the PSF's programs and services (such as our grants program, PyCon, fiscal sponsorship, trademarks, etc)
- Ensure adequate financial resources
- Protect assets and provide financial oversight
- Help recruit a diverse and competent board
- Ensure legal and ethical integrity
- Be an ambassador of the PSF
- Fiduciary duties (care, loyalty, obedience) (https://boardsource.org/fundamental-topics-of-nonprofit-board-service/roles-responsibilities/)
How do Directors and Officers conduct business?
- 90 minutes meetings, every other month, via conference call & Slack (note during crisis planning it can be monthly like during COVID-19)
- an active mailing list and also our internal Slack channels
- at two in-person meetings: one at PyCon US and a stand alone face-to-face meeting usually in November (for 2020 our PyCon meeting has been changed to virtual. May happen for the November meeting as well)
What is the flow of meetings?
- Introduction and Roll call
- The PSF uses a consent agenda for actions that a consensus is made on prior to the board meeting.
- We then discuss new business. Resolutions that come up during the meeting require a standalone discussion and vote.
- Then we enter the discussion portion of the meeting. This is the most important part of the meeting and we try to have this phase be the bulk of our meeting. We typically have a handful of items that need discussion, action, or decision. Sometimes we use this time to move certain projects forward such as strategic planning.
Additional items to know
- The position of Director is unpaid, purely volunteer.
- Staff positions receive a salary.
- A Director's physical location is not an overriding factor. Most of our meetings are virtual. We currently have Directors in the Zimbabwe, UK, India, Germany, Australia, and USA. Financial support is available our in-person meetings.
- Having a diverse board ensures we have a variety of point-of-views and is highly desirable.
- Every new director goes through a 2 part on-boarding (~ an hour each).
- The formal responsibilities of Directors and Officers are listed in the bylaws, articles V and VI.