Brokenhaze

The thoughts of a SysAdmin

LOPSA Board – My Candidate Statement

without comments

A little about me

Hi, I’m George and I’m running for one of the open seats on the LOPSA Board.

I’ve been involved in LOPSA for about four years now. I’ve been involved with the NYC local since it started, and have been part of the LOPSA-EAST (Formally PICC) committee for the past three years.

I’ve been working as a System Administrator for the last 14 years. Currently I’m an SRE at Stack Exchange.

I believe that this organization has a lot of promise to be a leader in the field of system administration and would like to be part of those that have been entrusted by the membership to guide the organization to that position.

Ideas for Change

I think you would agree with me that LOPSA as an organization needs to evolve, and change so that it is around and more importantly relevant in the coming years.

The best ways to make sure an organization is relevant is to grow, and have a louder voice. “How do we grow?” “How do we have a louder voice?” The former comes up almost every year at election time, the latter I’ve heard come up more and more in the past year.

Below are my ideas on how to make LOPSA better.

How do we grow

1. Keep working on locals

I’m not going to spend much time on this, but obviously we need to continue the work on growing, and starting new local groups. Everyone says this every year, and I think we do a pretty good job of starting new locals and growing the ones we already have.

2. Online membership

Personally I think by not having some sort of “Online Local” we are leaving a lot on the table by not having some sort of viable online membership. As of 2012 the US Bureau of Labor Statistics says that there are 366,400 people what are classified as Network and Computer Systems Administrators. They are not all in the 15 localities that we have locals.

We need to setup a good online community that all members can access, but it should be geared towards trying to replicate some of the experience of a physical local.

  • Simulate the talks
    • Monthly Articles
    • Monthly Video Presentation
    • Dedicated talk area – forum, possibly comments section – for the above items
  • A way to emulate the before and after hang out sessions

How do we become more vocal

As an organization we need to become more vocal. We need to be putting out statements and positions on the important issues of they day. SOPA, Snowden, and Net Neutrality are all perfect examples of topics that LOPSA should have a vocal and strong opinion on that represents the majority of our membership.

One thing we need to make sure to do is not get stuck trying to get everyone to agree on. Any group will have differing opinions on every topic. One very important part of being vocal and putting our ideals out there is that you can’t put out a statement three weeks after the news has broken. What we need to do is have a group of people that are trusted by the membership to convey the majority opinion.

Finally, Focus

We need to look at everything that we are trying to do as an organization with a critical eye. There needs to be an examination of everything we are doing and see if it fits one of three categories 1) better the sysadmin community, 2) Being a leader in the community, 3) Growing the organization. If anything we are working on does not fit into one of those three categories we need to take a hard look at it and decide if we should continue with that venture.

It doesn’t need to be a hard stop, we will never pick this back up later, but we should stop spending limited resources on things that don’t move us closer to our goals. As we grow we will have more resources in time and money to be able to start re-introducing some of these initiatives that had to be stopped.

Written by George Beech

May 2nd, 2014 at 7:38 pm

Posted in Uncategorized