Apache Governance: Board of Directors

This post has been improved and turned into the ASF’s official Corporate Governance overview of the Board!

This is the first in a series of essays describing Apache governance. While there are a number of existing documents that explain some of the “hows”, I’m hoping to fill in some of the key information about the “whys” of how the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) actually works day-to-day. Look for more articles on things like the Membership, PMCs, projects, and more coming up!

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Shane’s Apache Director Position Statement

The ASF is currently holding it’s annual Member’s meeting, where we elect a new board of directors among other matters (and usually elect a number of new ASF Members!) I am fortunate enough to have been nominated again for the board election, something which I am truly grateful for.

Along with participating in Apache projects and in various organizational ways within the ASF, director candidates typically write a brief (or not so brief) position statement about what their objectives as a director are. These position statements are included in the board ballot that all active Members of the ASF vote on to elect a new board.

Re-reading my position statement, I’ve realized that there’s nothing I’m discussing in my position statement that I wouldn’t mind posting in public – in fact, the more I think about it, this is something I should post in public to try to better explain just how Apache works. As the ASF grows, it becomes more and more important for Members to explain how the ASF works and why it’s core values and the Apache Way are important to us.

Shane Curcuru (curcuru)–Director position statement –v1.1


My mission statement for the ASF

“The mission of the ASF is to provide high quality, open source software for the public good at no cost, and to showcase our meritocratic and community-driven method of building sustainable software projects.”


Why you should make me your first choice

Because you believe we need to understand the global community in which we interact, while still keeping our neutrality, our public mission, and our projects foremost in our minds. Because you believe in community over code. Because you believe in keeping hats separate, our communities public and open, our organization as simple as feasible, and in making it as easy as possible for our healthy communities to build great software. Because you want board members who recognize the need to work together productively.

My objective as a director and as VP, Brand Management is to provide our projects with the support they need to ensure that our organization and our projects can continue as independent and healthy communities for the long haul. Ensuring that we can control our public perception – our brands – without commercial influence is crucial to ensuring our PMCs and the ASF as a whole remains a neutral place where all contributors are welcomed and can participate equally, and where PMC decisions are made for the benefit of the project itself.

My vision for the ASF

My ideal ASF is a respected, innovative, and neutral collaboration ground for communities and software projects. It’s a place where hobbyists, consultants, and developers from $bigcos collaborate together – easily, freely, equally and openly – building high quality software usable by all. The ideal ASF is known as a place that community-minded software projects can easily join, and that provides a rich technical infrastructure to facilitate the development process.

Our value to the world includes our software products, our community and consensus-based approach to software development, and the way our proven record of success has increased the global acceptance of open source products as a whole.

This past board has worked together well and has been very effective at finding consensus without rancor in the face of some significant challenges. As the ASF grows in members, projects, and technical influence, it is important to be able to keep true to our ideals and still maintain our friendships and respect within the membership.

About Shane

I recently had my 20th anniversary at IBM, where I work in the HR division as an Applications Architect. My employment and income have been unrelated to my work at the ASF for many years, and I will always clearly separate volunteer work from employer-funded work.

My involvement in the ASF is driven by a belief in, and a love of, the ASF, and is not influenced by politics or finances. I live in Arlington, MA with my wife, young daughter, and 2 cats. I view directorships and officer positions at the ASF as serious commitments. I will continue my attendance at every board meeting if re-elected.

Most importantly, my daughter Roxanne asked me to mention that you should vote for me because I’m the best dad ever. (unsolicited quote!)

Addenda – Public Work

I truly believe that we should work in as public a manner as practical, for public work is a key enabler of healthy and growing communities. As the ASF has grown in size and impact on the software world, it is clear that we do need to keep some specific discussions private, especially discussions on various legal matters.

In that light, I am publishing this statement on my blog in this posting.

Reminder: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent the positions, strategies or opinions of my employer nor of any volunteer organization I work with.”

Congratulations to the new Apache Board

The Apache Software Foundation held it’s Annual Member’s Meeting this week and cast votes to elect a new board of directors as we do each year. We also elected a number of new potential members, who may be receiving their private invitations shortly.

The new 2010-2011 Board of Directors comprises:

  • Shane Curcuru
  • Doug Cutting
  • Bertrand Delacretaz
  • Roy T. Fielding
  • Jim Jagielski
  • Sam Ruby
  • Noirin Shirley
  • Greg Stein
  • Henri Yandell

We welcome Noirin Shirley, who will be a new face on the board this year. We also welcome back Henri, Sam, and Bertrand who have served on the board in the past; the remaining directors are incumbents.

A big round of thanks went out during our meeting (on irc) for all of the non-returning directors Brett, Geir, Brian, and especially for Justin Erenkrantz who has also been serving as the Foundation’s President as well as a director.

See also the official ASF Foundation blog posting with the announcement.

A graphical history of the directors of the ASF is also available.

apache.numprojects -= 1; apache.karaf.intro = “Welcome!”

For only the fourth time in our history at last month’s June board meeting we passed resolutions that effectively reduced the total number of Apache projects by one.

  • As was widely expected, the board terminated the Apache iBATIS project, and sent it to the Apache Attic. This recognizes that we don’t expect there to be an active Apache iBATIS community, and that we don’t expect there to be any new development in that project for a while. The Apache Attic will continue to provide all the project’s resources on a read-only basis for any existing users. (Note: current users may also be interested in the external fork over at mybatis.org)
  • The board also terminated the little-known Apache Quetzalcoatl project and moved it to the Attic. “Quetz” had been charged with developing the mod_python module, but it never really took off as an organized Apache project. Current users may be interested in finding the sources over at modpython.org
  • In happier news, the board voted to promote an Apache Felix subproject named Karaf to top-level status. Apache Karaf is a small OSGi based runtime which provides a lightweight container onto which various components and applications can be deployed. The Felix PMC had seen that there was sufficient community around just the Karaf subproject that it deserved to have it’s own project.

So that’s two projects down, but one project up for the month of June.

iBATIS and Quetz both join previously retired projects in the Attic, HiveMind, Shale, AxKit, Xang, Beehive, and Jakarta Taglibs. Each are projects that had lost an effective Apache community able to actively develop them.

In the past, the ASF has also terminated a handful of other projects before the Attic was opened in 2008; those include Apache Commons (the first version) and Apache Avalon, both terminated for community issues. The ASF also once had an Apache PHP project that was terminated; in that case it was a happy and mutual separation of the PHP Group from the ASF.

Resolutions for creating and terminating Apache projects are passed by the board, typically at monthly meetings, and our public records of formal board actions are always available.

Stay tuned for news of the upcoming Annual Member’s Meeting of the ASF being held in mid-July, where we’ll also be electing a new board of directors.

Congratulations to the new Board!

The ASF just concluded it’s annual member’s meeting, where we elected a new board of directors. Before I list them here, I want to say what gets said at every member’s meeting when we elect a new board:

THANK YOU! To the hard work and dedication from all the past board members, and our executive officers.

This is in no way to overlook the work that all our committers have willingly donated to the ASF’s mission of producing software for the public good.  But it is a recognition of the steps above and beyond that serving as a director or officer of the ASF requires.

The new board of directors for the ASF are:

  • Shane Curcuru
  • Doug Cutting
  • Justin Erenkrantz
  • Roy T. Fielding
  • Jim Jagielski
  • Geir Magnusson Jr
  • Brian McCallister
  • Brett Porter
  • Greg Stein

I’ve also compiled a updated graphical history of ASF directors.