So with all due respect and sympathy for the individuals involved and me being unwilling to hurt people I feel it would be worse for me just keep quiet.

The Foundation is supposed to be an example of good Governance for our entire movement. We (as a movement) have come a long way in the past 20 years (and that is important: as our organisation and budget grows, so do our responsibilities and the critical questions we get from the world)

My personal opinion with regards to this announcement it comes down to this:

It is NOT good governance to have a current board member suddenly resign and then create a situation where that person receives compensation for a position that seems to have been created specifically for that board member (or at least was not publicly posted?). 

Even simpler
It is a good practice to create a 12 month waiting period before board members of non-profits can become a staff member/paid contractor/consultant.

No matter whether or not this is legally or procedurally explainable… 

Jan-Bart de Vreede
(Writing this as a personal opinion)

On 23 Jun 2021, at 22:44, Maggie Dennis <mdennis@wikimedia.org> wrote:

Hello, all. :) 

I hope and trust that everyone is keeping well during these times! 

I’m Maggie Dennis, Vice President of the Community Resilience & Sustainability group of Wikimedia Foundation, within the Legal department. I wanted to announce with pleasure that Maria Sefidari has agreed to consult with the Foundation on Movement Strategy and the ongoing Board evolution for the upcoming year. Many of us know María from her role as the chair of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, from which she provided invaluable leadership in governance, oversight, and fundraising. Others may know her from her volunteer work as User:Raystorm, in which she has a broad range of experience.

María, based in Spain, commenced her assignment with the Foundation this week. We intend to tap into her expertise and knowledge of the Foundation to support a successful implementation of the Movement’s Strategy and to tap into new opportunities. (With her Board work, she will be supporting Quim Gil’s team with the Board election and helping Margo Lee in improving onboarding, documentation practices, and training.) María will report to me as part of our Community Resilience & Sustainability group. I’m excited that she accepted our offer for a more hands-on assignment, particularly given how important all of the work she’ll be supporting is. :) With more than 15 years of Wikimedia experience, her contributions in the next phase will be a tremendous benefit to me and my team as we continue settling into our own work on Movement Strategy.

Those of you who are involved with Movement Strategy are used to seeing her at related meetings and still will. :) I anticipate María will be joining one or more of the Movement Strategy global conversations this weekend. Advertisement alert: maybe you can, too? Here’s more detail! I myself will be attending at least one of those sessions and look forward to seeing some of you there.

Warm regards,

Maggie Dennis
Vice President, Community Resilience & Sustainability
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
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