2018 OTW Elections Candidates Announcement

Candidates Announcement

The Organization for Transformative Works is pleased to announce the following candidates for the 2018 Election (in alphabetical order by given name):

  • C. Ryan Smith
  • Lex de Leon
  • Michelle Schroeder
  • Natalia Gruber

Because we have 2 seats to be filled and 4 candidates, the 2018 election WILL be contested – that is, the members of OTW WILL vote on which candidates fill the seats.

The Elections Committee is excited to introduce the candidates to all of the members of the OTW! Included in this post are links to short Bios and Platforms written by the candidates. This post also marks the beginning of our Q&A period, during which we invite the public to submit questions for the candidates. Additionally, we will be holding a series of live chats – dates and times for those are to be announced based on candidate availability. Information on the voting period and how to vote will also be posted shortly.

In the meantime, there is a timeline of Elections events available here for your reference. Read on to learn more about our candidates and how you can submit questions for them!

Platforms and Bios

We asked each candidate to provide us with a Bio that sums up their professional and fannish experience, as well as to write a Platform about their goals for their term on the Board by answering the following questions:

  • Why did you decide to run for election to the Board?
  • What skills and/or experience would you bring to the Board?
  • Choose one or two goals for the OTW that are important to you and that you would be interested in working on during your term. Why do you value these goals? How would you work with others to achieve them?
  • What is your experience with the OTW’s projects and how would you collaborate with the relevant committees to support and strengthen them? Try to include a range of projects, though feel free to emphasize particular ones you have experience with.
  • How would you balance your Board work with other roles in the OTW, or how do you plan to hand over your current roles to focus on Board work?

You can read both the candidates’ answers to these questions and their bios by following the links below.

Question & Answer (Q&A)

Candidates will also answer questions from the public. Anyone may submit questions via the Elections form. Please submit all questions by 11:59pm UTC on June 25 (what time is that where I live?). All candidates will answer each question submitted, subject to the following restrictions:

  • Questions can be a maximum of 50 words long.
  • Questions must not be repeats of questions from the Platforms. This is to allow candidates to spend their time answering new questions.
  • Similar questions will be grouped together so candidates don’t have to repeat themselves. Elections staff will decide which questions are similar enough to group.
  • If you have a follow-up to a Platform question, please specifically mention that it is a follow-up so it isn’t treated as a repeat.

The posting date for answers will be chosen depending on the number of questions received. Posts will be spread out, arranged by topic, to make it easier for voters to read all the answers.

C. Ryan Smith’s Bio & Platform

Bio

C. Ryan Smith: Ryan’s earliest memories of being in fandom stem from watching Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh! in the early morning hours before school with his dad. He can remember talking about the shows and games with other children in his class and feeling that familiar sense of camaraderie that we all feel today. If asked though, he would point out that his first true encounter with fandom at large wouldn’t occur until years later in 2008. It was at this point that he was able to access the internet without restrictions and began interacting with other fans on the likes of Bulbagarden and Fanfiction.net. Ryan first started volunteering for the OTW during his first year in university in 2013; due to personal circumstances, he left the OTW for a while before returning to service in 2015. He’s also attending university again, working towards a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology.

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Lex de Leon’s Bio & Platform

Bio

Lex de Leon: Lex currently works for the United States Government as a document and content management information technology specialist, with a specific focus on records import, migration and long term retention. He began by writing fanfiction for the Valdemar series and has since accumulated multiple fandoms which he is always willing to discuss. An unapologetically passionate femslash shipper, he enjoys writing fic that draws upon his life experiences and imagination, and reading any fic that catches his eye or features a pairing he enjoys. A fortuitous visit to the Archive just after recruitment for Support was announced led to him applying, with the belief that his decade of experience in technical support would be helpful within the OTW. He firmly believes in the mission of the OTW and wishes to continue its work into the future. Somehow, a lovely woman agreed to marry him and always be willing to listen to his fanwork ideas. Together they are raising two cats, a dog and one ornery, flightless bird.

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Michelle Schroeder’s Bio & Platform

Bio

Michelle Schroeder: Michelle has been in fandom for a little over fifteen years now. Their first fandom was Harry Potter, which led to more and more fandoms and eventually to AO3. They joined the AO3 Documentation committee in 2016, and then the Tag Wrangling and Support committees in 2017. They currently spend most of their time working at an arcade, doing committee work, or reading whatever they can get their hands on – and sometimes all three at the same time!

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Natalia Gruber’s Bio and Platform

Bio

Natalia Gruber discovered her first fanfiction by accident while waiting for the last Harry Potter book to come out, and thought for the longest time that it was a wonderful, but isolated idea. Thankfully, she eventually found out that not only was this story not the only one, but that fandom was a lively, rich community full of amazing people and more fic than she could ever read. She lurked for several years reading mostly Harry Potter, until she joined the Tolkien fandom. There she finally started publishing her own works and making friends with other fans, and it’s where she still feels the most at home.

An English teacher during the day, Nat joined the OTW in 2016 as a Brazilian Portuguese translator. A few months later she became part of the Policy & Abuse and Tag Wrangling committees, where she has had a wonderful experience and learned a lot more about the OTW and its work. At the end of 2017, she decided to join Translation staff, working to support and assist translators in their work, and engaging in a lot more inter-committee and managerial tasks.

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2018 Timeline and Membership Deadline

The OTW Elections committee is pleased to announce that the timeline for the 2018 election for new members of the Board of Directors has been posted!

This year’s election will be held August 10-13. This means that the deadline for staff to declare their candidacy is June 15.

As usual, the election membership deadline is June 30. If you’re interested in voting, please make sure your membership is active as of that date.

You can find out how to become a member on the Elections website, or if you’re familiar with the process, you can donate here!

If you want to know more about the election process in general, you can check out the Elections Policies.

We’re looking forward to an active election season with ample communication between candidates and voters, and we hope you’ll be a part of it. Don’t forget to follow the Elections committee on Twitter to keep up to date with the latest news!

If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to contact Elections.