[OSGeo-Discuss] Defining an OSGeo Ambassador role

Michael P. Gerlek mpg at flaxen.com
Thu Apr 19 15:14:42 PDT 2012

Cameron, thanks for bringing this up for discussion.

A couple things to note:

- in some cases, the Board might decide that it is important enough to have an Ambassador at an event that the Foundation would cover travel expenses

- it is unlikely that the Foundation would be able to cover the costs of the Ambassador's time, however; aside from the expense involved and trying to determine a fair uniform hourly rate, I could see that turn into a fight for who gets to go; but on the other hand, a nominal fee might help enable some of us who are self-employed or similar to fill the ambassador role

- some events/functions might require the Ambassador be a Board member as well (as in the case of the email of mine which Cameron quotes)


> -----Original Message-----
> From: discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org [mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Cameron Shorter
> Sent: Thursday, April 19, 2012 2:24 PM
> To: OSGeo Discussions
> Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] Defining an OSGeo Ambassador role
> On 20/04/2012 4:06 AM, Michael P. Gerlek wrote:
> > Do we have any policies and cost structures for the Ambassador function yet?
> I've seen a few people talking about creating an OSGeo Ambassador role.
> Arnulf I think might have been the first to mention it, and I think it
> is an excellent idea. I'm also aware that the OGC are considering
> developing OGC ambassadors too.
> So I'd like to open the floor and see what people think an ambassador's
> role could involve, which leads into the qualities we would wish our
> ambassador's to have, which leads into the ways we may select an ambassador.
> Let me start by noting some of the driving factors:
> 1. Arnulf has noted that as OSGeo president, he has spent a significant
> amount of time on areoplanes travelling around the world to talk on
> behalf of OSGeo. He has suggested that this role should be shared.
> Conference organisors, who have a primary goal of attracting attendees,
> look for authoritative figureheads to talk at conferences. They are
> expected to have a deep insight into a specific domain, such as OSGeo.
> They should also speak well, even better if they are entertaining.
> 2. OSGeo is a sexy topic has many conferences, and there are hundreds,
> if not thousands of conferences around the world which would like to see
> an OSGeo presence.
> 3. OSGeo is fortunate to draw membership from around the world,
> including boasting a number of very healthy local chapters. As such, we
> are likely to have potential ambassadors in most counties. (We might be
> a bit short in Antarctica)
> 4. There are times when negotiating MOUs or similar with other
> countries, it would be useful to have someone local speak with authority
> on behalf of OSGeo.
> 5. Note that there are conflicting interests here of wanting to open up
> the role for anyone who volunteers, verses maintaining a selectiveness
> and prestige for the role which is the key selection criteria for
> conferences asking for an ambassador.
> As such, I think it important that ambassadors can only be voted into
> the position, and not handed out to anyone. We already vote for a board,
> and charter members.
> I think board members should be considered ambassadors by default.
> Should charter members be considered ambassadors? Charter members only
> get this role after demonstrating a commitment to OSGeo, so will likely
> have a reasonable depth of OSGeo knowledge. Maybe we should ask for a
> history of speaking well (as demonstrated at conferences), to the
> ambassador criteria.
> Then lastly, do we wish to invite ambassadors from a greater circle? At
> this point, I'd probably err on saying no, as if the entry bar to
> becoming an ambassador is too easy, then the mystic of the role will be
> lost.
> --
> Cameron Shorter
> Geospatial Solutions Manager
> Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
> Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
> Think Globally, Fix Locally
> Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source
> http://www.lisasoft.com
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