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This is a part of the FAmSCo Elections Interviews series. Voting is open to all Fedora contributors. The voting period starts on Tuesday, August 8th and closes promptly at 23:59:59 UTC on Monday, August 14th. Please read the responses from candidates and make your choices carefully. Feel free to ask questions to the candidates here (preferred) or elsewhere!

Interview with Andrew Ward (award3535)


What is your background in Fedora? What have you worked on and what are you doing now?

I started in the free media section mailing out numerous cd’s throughout North America in 2009. I got started with Fedora during after wanting to explore Linux products. I tried many versions but discovered Fedora was an appealing and easy to install operating system. After being quite impressed with the distribution (F10) I wanted to help out in any way I could and the free media area was where it was easy for me to spread the best Linux distribution (in my opinion) developed. Working my way through the free media I wanted to do more, so I joined the ambassadors group where I have been for the last 7 years. I have moved upwards within FAmNA as Treasurer, Mentor, and a Regional Ambassador.

What are the most pressing issues facing the Fedora Ambassadors today? What should we do about them?

I believe the most pressing issue with Ambassadors is Unity. In order for us to function with Fedora we all need to be on the same page. There have been many inconsistencies with organization/structure which makes it harder for functions, events, and users to see what Fedora is about. The Four Foundations are a good foundation, but in order for the organization to grow we need to strengthen our foundations. To accomplish this we as a group need to come together and set guides in place that build on our four foundations. FAMSCO is a good place to start.

What are three personal qualities that you feel would benefit FAmSCo if you are elected?

I am punctual and dedicated, never late for and chair the FAmNA meetings.

I have vast experience with people and how to talk to them.

I also am a “by the book” type of person, but have learned how to adapt to various situations regarding people and projects and remaining flexible within the rules and guidelines.

What is your strongest point as a candidate? What is your weakest point?

My strongest point is Dedication; I am truly dedicated to Fedora and all its functions. My weakest point is that I have a follow the rules type of person, if there is written guidance it should be followed until changed or updated.

What are your future plans? Is there anything you can consider a “Mission Statement” as a candidate?

My future plans with the project are to continue to improve on the four foundations within the project and develop a sense of unity between all ambassadors. It is hard to improve on a mission statement that is already strong; building onto what is already there will unite us all.

Is there a specific task or issue you think that FAmSCo should address this term?

Communications between regions and the council, and it seems that mailing lists can be overwhelming if you are in many groups. There has got to be more than just mailing lists and meetbot. The magazine and blog sites are a good starting point for getting the word to all ambassadors. Solid communications is the key to success in any organization.

Are the Ambassadors disconnected to the rest of the project? If so, what is your solution to fix the issue?

I believe that a good portion of the group is disconnected from a lot of the matters happening within the project. A good example is what the council was putting into place for this FY. Most of us in NA were not really aware of what the new policies under development were. Yet without implementation and advertising to the group, the group as a whole will fail thus the confusion that was presented at several of our meetings. This issue goes hand in hand with the question regarding specific tasks that FAmSCo should address is Organizational Communications.

What kind of information should be exchanged between Ambassadors and other groups / sub-projects?

There are many things us as Ambassadors should have to accomplish our mission. The main focus on communications should include upcoming major changes in applications, features, media availability, and marketing issues. Since we are the center of promotions without a good knowledge of Fedora and its projects would be devastating and destructive to the project. Marketing plays a big role in what we need to promote Fedora; Design also plays a vital role with advertising and showcasing Fedora.

If a past member of FAmSCo, identify a negative factor you noticed while serving. How would you propose to improve on that for the next cycle?

As humans learning from mistakes and errors is a difficult task. I have learned to take any negative factors and feedback and turn it into constructive learning. As a former military man learning has never stopped at any level. What we do with the information provided to us is how we define ourselves. Any information whether its negative or positive can be a learning point.

The past term, FAmSCo did not have any representatives from NA or APAC. If a region isn’t represented this term, how do you hope to help include and support a region without representation?

Since my region was not represented during the last term, I am very aware how difficult it is to get information. I took the initiative to read all the meeting minutes from FAmSCo trying to keep myself informed for NA. I believe that a good communications platform either in a summary form emailed out or posted on the blog/magazine could improve this condition. As leaders in our region we need to weed out what is not applicable in our region and by the same measure we need to know what information is being passed out in all regions. Unification and communications are key to a great organization.

Closing words

I believe this is an opportunity to excel within the Fedora Community and bring a new perspective to FAmSCO. I would bring dedication and enthusiasm to FAmSCO and to the Ambassador community, and would be an honor to further serve Fedora in any way that I can.