Shane’s Director Position Statement 2024

I’ve written many times on how the ASF board works in my past 10+ years of service. My objective now is: simplifying and improving our governance culture, so that when the next generation takes over, they will be able to scale the ASF in a way we will all still recognize for the next 50 years.

There are two aspects I will focus on in the coming year to improve this:

  1. Making our documentation easier to read, and our processes simpler to follow for all of our communities, especially newcomers (contributors, podlings, potential Incubator donors, anyone).
  2. Ensuring rules and best practices are clear enough – with explanations of “why” behind every rule or practice! – so that it’s simpler for our PMCs and the board to keep helping our projects grow in the Apache Way.

Our membership is an amazing resource: passionate, focused on building community-driven projects, and active in advocating our community norms in the broader ecosystem. This outreach and mentoring by members is it’s own public good, above and beyond the software our Apache projects produce. But culturally, it feels like we are doing this individually, not as a truly coherent and organized community. It’s no wonder why some projects come through the Incubator with slightly different ideas of how to work, either from different mentoring perspectives, or hard-to-understand processes.

If we objectively view our how-to documentation and compare it to other foundations out there, we generally come off the poorer, both in graphic design and in readabilty to the newcomer. While some of us have spent immense effort in building up our published docs over the years, the end result has often been inconsistent in the whole. Historically, we tend to work on docs (or information architecture!) as individuals or small ad hoc groups, not true communities that are focused on continuing to maintain systems. That’s why I love Rich’s Working Groups concept over in ComDev: working to foster a specific communities working as a group on documentation and other improvements.


The above will be my main focus – along with everything else the board does, of course:

  • Reviewing and mentoring PMCs, with a particular focus on keeping feedback much more focused, actionable, and friendly.
  • Approving our budget, keeping the organizational lights on, appointing officers, and working on finding the next generation of officers and directors for our future.
  • Understanding the larger landscape we live in, like finding a VP, Public Affairs to track potential legislation in the US now that CRA/PLD are in progress.
  • Pushing us to invest – with budget/staff or focused calls for volunteers – in our public presence, to ensure that when we attract projects and contributors, they have an easy time building healthy self-governing communities.
  • Signposting our long-term strategy for the ASF as a whole. While we’re here to give a long-term home to our project communities (who build our software), the board also needs to help focus some of our individual volunteer energy into specific areas and collaborative working groups.
  • Working with VP, Brand Management to see if what further improvements we can make either detecting trademark issues, and in dealing with potential infringements politely, quickly, and in ways that protect our reputation, and make it simple for third parties to understand what’s appropriate.
  • Working with the Incubator to improve the experience. This includes both making it easier for newcomers to understand how the Incubator works, and to improve outcomes, so we have a better shared understanding of how ASF projects work with all of our newly graduated TLPs.

On some personal notes, I will have more time for ASF work in the coming year; last year brought unusual $real-life time challenges for me. I am retired, and have never let employment or personal income sources influence my decisions about what’s best for the ASF. I volunteer at the ASF because this is the most efficient and enjoyable way that I can donate my time for the public good. I truly believe that part of the public good we do is by our example of community-led collaborative projects, along with our software.

Shane’s Director Position Statement 2020

As I do each year (and did again in 2024), here are my goals if I am re-elected to the Board at the ASF next year. Posting these statements each year (see 2019 and many past years) is an important way to communicate outside the membership how I think the ASF is doing (great!).

My objectives next year as a director are simple:

  • Continue to improve the services we offer our projects, especially around making services easier to find/use/consume, and provide better build, CI, and other infrastructure needs where practical for our organization.
  • Build a culture of positive encouragement so that newer Members feel comfortable speaking up; and make it easy for them to step up and volunteer for Foundation governance and operations.
  • Ensure the board takes a strategic view, and takes the time to think about the big picture and 5-year plan so we can keep the ASF vibrant and improving for the next 5, 10, and 50 years.

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Shane’s Director Position Statement 2019

The ASF is holding its annual Member’s Meeting next week to elect a new board and new Members to the ASF. I’m honored to have been nominated to stand for the board election, and I’m continuing my tradition of publicly posting my vision for Apache each year.

I’ll keep this short(er); if you want to know more, please read my past thoughts on how Apache works and where we’re going (see end of this post).


After 20 years of growth, the ASF is a successful open-source community providing software to the world and a community framework to dedicated volunteers. At this time in our community development, we need to focus on efficiently scaling our organization to keep up with growth in project communities who need services and mentoring. We also need to make it easier for Members (whose numbers are rapidly increasing!) to participate in ways that provide consistent and positive guidance to our projects and podlings.

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The board member experience at Apache

With the Apache Annual Member’s Meeting coming up soon, thoughts turn to our board and new member elections, and where the ASF is heading as a Foundation. The weeks around our meeting are often filled with great new ideas, as well as the traditional statements from our many excellent director candidates about how we can work together to make Apache better for all of our projects.

This year a fellow director came up with a great new set of questions for current directors about how the board actually works. This is a great counterpoint to some of the questions members have asked in the past about where directors see the ASF going in the 5-10 year timescale. The perspective on day-to-day work of being a director is timely since we have several great new candidates for our election!

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How Apache Directors Run ASF Board Meetings

I was recently fortunate enough to be re-elected to the ASF’s Board of Directorsalong with 8 other excellent candidates. Since there were two new directors elected – Isabel and Roman – we plan to have returning directors work together to improve our documentation of how we run our board meetings so smoothly.

This is my personal timeline of how I volunteer as a director, in terms of our monthly board meetings (there are a lot of other things directors do too!).

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Where Is The ASF Going? Director Q&A

With Apache board elections coming up soon, an ASF Member came up with a great set of questions for all director candidates. With permission, I’m sharing those questions here, and providing my answers as well.

I’ve also posted my own Director Position Statement for this year (and past years!).

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Shane’s Director Position Statement 2018

The ASF is holding its annual Member’s Meeting next week to elect a new board and a number of new Members to the ASF. I’m honored to have been nominated to stand for the board election, and I’m continuing my tradition of publicly posting my vision for Apache each year – including my 2017 board statement.

Please read on for my take on what’s important for the ASF’s future – or see my Q&A about where Apache is heading.

Continue reading Shane’s Director Position Statement 2018

What Apache Also Needs In A Board

Some great recent discussions around the upcoming member’s meeting in 2017 have got me to thinking about the larger question: how can the ASF as an organization function better, and how does the board effect that? I think there is one more important concept in a board that the ASF needs to have, along with oversight and vision.

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Shane’s Apache Director Position Statement, 2017

The ASF is holding it’s annual Member’s Meeting next week to elect a new board and a number of new Members to the ASF.  I’m honored to have been nominated to stand for the board election, and I’m continuing my tradition of publicly posting my vision for Apache each year.

Please read on for my take on what’s important for the ASF’s future…

Continue reading Shane’s Apache Director Position Statement, 2017

What Apache needs in a Board

The ASF is holding it’s annual member’s meeting soon, where we will elect a new 9-member Board of Directors for a one-year term.  I’ve been honored with a nomination to run for the board again, as have a number of other excellent Member candidates.  While I’m writing my nomination statement – my 2016 director statement and earlier ones are posted – I’ve been thinking about what Apache really needs in a board to manage the growth of our projects and to improve our operations.

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