Difference between revisions of "Memos to Members/16 December 2004"
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Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2004 10:57:27 CST
Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2004 10:57:27 CST
Revision as of 01:37, 16 January 2006
Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2004 10:57:27 CST To: email@example.com From: David Parter <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: [SAGE] SAGE Memo-to-Members (December 2004) SAGE Memo-to-Members December 2004 1. LISA 2004 wrap-up and news For those who couldn't attend, LISA 2004 (Atlanta, Nov. 14-19) was very successful. We had about 1120 attendees, and feedback was very positive. Congratulations and thank-you to all the speakers; Lee Damon (Program Chair); the Program Committee; and the Invited Talks, Guru-is-In and workshop coordinators; and to the USENIX staff and everyone else involving in making LISA the great conference that it is. Next year's LISA Program Chair is David Blank-Edelman. You can contact him with comments/ideas/questions at email@example.com. Also at LISA: - Doug Hughes was the recipient of the first Chuck Yerkes Award for Outstanding Individual Contribution on Member Forums. Congratulations Doug! - Brent Chapman was the recipient of the SAGE Outstanding Achievement Award. Congratulations Brent! - Short Topics Booklet #12 was released: Building a Logging Infrastructure by Abe Singer and Tina Bird Booklet #12 is being mailing to all new members. It will be on the sage.org website soon. If you want to order a printed copy, see http://www.sage.org/pubs/ordering.mm - New SAGE Polo Shirts were on sale at LISA, and will be available in the future via the SAGE Store. - Free SAGE Stickers (for laptops and other flat surfaces) were a big hit: see http://www.sage.org/newsage/lisa2004stickers.gif JD Welch donated the designs. The "Rules for Sysadmins" were provided by William Annis. We are out of stickers now, but we will be making more stickers (and adding designs) in the future. - Contestants in the annual LISA QUIZ SHOW received framed copies of the SAGE Code of Ethics (along with the usual pile of tech books) as prizes (visit http://www.sage.org/ethics.mm for the text of the code of ethics and a downloadable version suitable for framing). - The SAGE transition team had a very productive open meeting with members. The transition team provided an update on the transition to an independent SAGE (see below). Other issues discussed included governance, marketing, and improving communication. 2. SAGE Transition status/news (note: much of this is taken from the slides prepared for the community meeting, with updates and edits appropriate for an email format). First, we need to reiterate several important points: * SAGE services will continue to be provided by USENIX until the transition to a new SAGE organization. Rob Kolstad and the USENIX office staff are still working on SAGE projects and services. * SAGE memberships continue unchanged -- please renew when your membership expires! * LISA will continue to be co-sponsored by USENIX and SAGE, and will continue to be the premier System Administration event. The transition team (Lorette Cheswick, Geoff Halprin, Trey Harris, and David Parter) and others have been devoting considerable attention to understanding the organizational problems that have hurt SAGE in the past, as well as to identification of our strengths. During the transition, there will inevitably be some cases of "One step back, two steps forward." It is our goal that the "two steps forward" will happen in a timely manner. Setting up a new organization and coordinating with USENIX will inevitably lead to instances where we miss opportunities, or are slow to deal with things. The creation of a new, independent SAGE will allow us to move forward on our agenda in a more aggressive, wide-reaching way. We will have much more flexibility, but with independence comes responsibility -- and teething problems. In examining lessons learned from the past, a few issues stand out: * The independence issue has been put to rest: the question has been decided, we are moving on * Opportunities for volunteerism have been scattered, under-utilized, poorly organized, and frustrating for volunteers * We have had a failure to communicate (and the tardiness of this memo to members is not a sign of improvement -- as we are well aware!) We have identified three preliminary points to address those problems: * Better communications: The organization and the members must be connected. Ideas that have been discussed include better use of mailing lists, wikis, and sending the "memo to members" on a regular (scheduled) basis * Better member involvement: More volunteer opportunities, with more support and satisfaction for volunteers * Better leadership development: This flows naturally from a more involved and connected membership, but that isn't enough. Instead of ad-hoc Nominating Committees (for the elections) every two years, we will be putting together a standing Leadership Development Committee. The Leadership committee is tasked with developing and nurturing SAGE leadership at all levels, and serving as the nominating committee for Board elections. Incorporation: In accordance with the roadmap established by the USENIX Board of Directors, the SAGE Transition Team has filed the paperwork for incorporation (in New Jersey) and applied for tax-exempt status. The transition team is now officially the Interim Board of Trustees. This has been submitted to the USENIX Board of Directors, who have accepted it pending verification. We are awaiting verification and clarification of some details from the State of NJ. Governance: We have been drafting the bylaws for the new SAGE, and have established the following: - The Board will have 9 members, elected at large, for two-year terms (Note: Elections will be by preferential voting) - The Board will elect officers from within the Board - Elections for the first full board are targeted for March, 2005. - As discussed above, nominations for the Board will be handled by the Leadership Development Committee (to be named). Nominations can also be made directly by members. Management: We have been exploring our options for how to manage the organization day-to-day. Options range from hiring our own staff to contracting with a company that specializes in association management. Most likely we will end up with a hybrid: An association management company for administrative and other tasks common to most associations, and individual contracts for SAGE-specific services as appropriate. 3. How you can get involved Right now, we don't have the capability to effectively use a lot of volunteers -- but there are things that members can do to help: - Stay involved, and keep caring - Renew your SAGE membership, and recruit your co-workers and other sysadmins to join. - Participate in your local SAGE group, and bring along some of your co-workers. If you don't have a local SAGE group, help start one! Participation in local groups is the most effective way for most members to make a difference right now. - If you have business experience, and have the time to help us review our business/management/administrative options, please contact us. - If you have marketing experience, and have time to help, or ideas about how we should market SAGE (including a better answer to the question of why a system administrator should join SAGE), please let us know - If you have experience with member/community-oriented web sites (such as what sage.org could/should be), and have time to participate in either the technical or editorial direction of the sage.org web site, please let us know. 4. Contact info: * SAGE Transition Team/Interim Board: firstname.lastname@example.org * SAGE Coordinating Committee: email@example.com * SAGE member services: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com David Parter Your memo-to-members editor firstname.lastname@example.org