I've served on a few boards in my time, and if I wanted to "improve the set
of skills and the diversity contributed by newly selected trustees" this is
not how I'd try to do it.
Yes there are likely to be certain skillsets that you want on a board, but
that's a key reason for having independent members. A few years ago I
served ten years on the board of a charity local to me, we had certain
skillsets that we needed on the board, including a retired Medical Dr and a
couple of people who understood investments (our endowment was similar in
size to the WMF). We usually got such skills by recruiting independents who
had the skills we missed but thought we needed. Why else would you want
As for diversity, yes I can see a need and a route to do this via the
community places. But there are ways to do that that retain open elections,
for example, if you want to reserve a seat for "someone resident in sub
saharan africa" you can either create a separate geographic or virtual
constituency, or just use STV but modified to include the most popular
candidate who meets the diversity criteria you chose.