Drupal Training, Consulting, & Development by Doug Vann

The 1st LIVE, OPEN Drupal Association Board Meeting. An observers perspective and reactions.

Sat, 2012-03-24 10:21 -- dougvann

On Thursday March 22nd, 5pm at Denver DrupalCon, following the closing session, the Drupal Association had its regularly scheduled Board of Directors meeting. Different this time was the presence of many onlookers who observed the proceedings as guests. The room filled out nicely with over 50 seated and the chair-less seeking the best place to stand. The format was switched up a bit to accommodate and recognize the many interested guests in the room. DA Director, Jacob Redding, greeted the Board and the room; expressing his excitement at the sizable attendance. He explained that the Board was very eager to provide this insight into the process.

I didn't know every one who attended but I can tell you that I recognized a couple CTOs, CEOs, CMOs, and individuals from at least 5 countries in the room. For 90minutes the Board conducted the regularly scheduled Board Meeting. Afterwards an extension was granted which allowed the Marketing discussion to occur. This extension was granted due to a request earlier in the day from a number of us who wanted to discuss the marketing of Drupal with the DA.

After the Extension, we had dinner, many observers left, and the Advisory Board meeting took place. Here the spotlight was on the Advisory Board members as they reacted to the earlier discussions. Again the observers [only 4 of us at this point] were seen and not heard as we witnessed the collaboration frenzy that is the DA. 

At 9:20pm we called it a day. 4hours and 20minutes had passed and I had gained an incredibly valuable insight into the workings of the DA. I've always loved and respected the individuals of the DA for their hard work. Never critical of the people, I was blindly critical of the process. Now that I have seen the process I have to say that I have a deep respect for the process as well. What I witnessed re-confirmed in me that any perceived inactivity in any area is really more of a resource issue than anything else.


This list of topics is a very rough account of what transpired. As you will see, the Marketing section gets a lot of attention from me. :-)

{1} d.o -- the improvement list is pretty long and it seems like there is a strong chance/goal to have d.o on D7 by Munich
{2} Fund Raising -- The annual report showed that the DA is running on a pretty tight budget which, while large, is being stretched to accomplish many many things. More and more needs to be done and it simply can't happen yet. Many fundraising options were discussed.  [capital campaigns, membership drives, ad revenue from d.o properties, etc]
{3} 2 new at large directors were recognized at their 1st meeting.  Donna Benjamin [kattekrab] AND Steve Purkiss [stevepurkiss]
{4} Lots of talk about cons; Denver, SouthAmerica, and Munich  see DrupalCon Sao Paulo
{5} Marketing. Myself, Ben Finklea and many others attended this open Board meeting for the primary reason of getting a clearer answer on what the DA is able to do with regard to creating, gathering, publishing white-label marketing materials that Groups, Camps, Individuals, and Shops can use to convey the finer points such as
   [a] how many governments worldwide use Drupal,
   [b] How did the Whitehouse determine that Drupal was secure and could be used,
   [c] over-all, what is the Drupal economy? i.e. what dev fees are, how much shops make, how much devs make, etc ...These are ideas off of the top of my head. There are many more and this would grow as ppl step up and say something like, "I have talked to [professor, or boss, or IT guy, or ___ ] about letting me explain Drupal. I need a powerpoint presentation that I can customize and tailor to this audience.
   [d] Really. There is NO END in site to the materials needed to grow User Groups, Camps, HackFests, Summits, Cons, Etc..
{6} Universities. Trying to find a way to promote Drupal to Univs. What to do, how to do it, who actually does it, and how it's funded. The focus here was not getting more Univs to use Drupal but more-so getting CompSci Dpts and clubs, etc to look into Drupal as a course, a user group, a career, etc. Of course, the more Drupal Univs see the more apt they are to start using it a various levels of Academia.

If you made it to the bottom of this blog CONGRATZ! There will certainly be MUCH MORE to be said of the many topics I raised in this Blog. I just want to close by saying that it is a BLAST working together as a team to find solutions to common problems. My passion can come out as intolerant or even angry at times. I'm SO thankful that even when I get a little loud ppl keep listening and working with me. THANK YOU! As we mature as individuals we mature as a community. A mature community can solve problems and that excites me to no end!

Thank you! 

Comments

Submitted by ijf8090 on

Thanks - great idea, will look out for it at the next Con.

Ian

Submitted by ijf8090 on

Was not aware it was happening and open to interested observers. Was it posted somewhere?

Ian

Submitted by DougVann on

I became aware of it when members of the DA attended a Marketing BoF earlier that day. It was at that BoF that we decided to gather a subset of our Marketing BoF group and show up to the open board meeting.
I'm sure it was posted somewhere. It was about 45minutes after the closing session on thursday. I suspect most people cleared out of the building by then.
Still though, the room was packed. If we would have had any more people show up they would have been standing.