On Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 4:11 PM, Hisham <hisham@wikimedia.org> wrote:
Dear India Community

I'm writing to inform you that I plan to leave my current role supporting Wikimedia in India.  I am going to be exploring opportunities and evaluating options that are closer to my career aspirations and my personal circumstances.  I will be working through to ensure that there is a smooth transition - and this is likely to take 2-3 months.  I am writing now because I felt it appropriate and opportune to inform you as early as possible. 

I want to start off by thanking the Wikimedia community and movement for giving me this extraordinary opportunity.  Working on something like India Program has been something that has been professionally enriching and personally fulfilling. Over the past 1 1/2 years, I have been supported by so many of you - and I want to thank you for everything you have done!  The passion and intellectual firepower of our community has been my constant source of drive and guidance.  There are so many examples of powerful stories from all over the country: the incredible efforts put in by the IEP Campus Ambassadors in Pune; the army of volunteers that drove the outreach push across the country in the first few months of this year; the beautiful stories of fantastic community initiatives from far and wide across the country and sub-continent, and indeed the world; the remarkable stories from so many communities - large, small and tiny ones!

I want to thank the team that I have had the pleasure and privilege of working with - Nitika, Noopur, Shiju & Subha.  You guys have been wonderful.  The work that we are doing is experimental and we have been innovating every day, and I know the circumstances have not always been easy.  Take strength and inspiration from the large number of community members who have been touched by you and appreciate your efforts and value your work.
I will send an actual "over and out" message later.  In the meantime, I will continue to work on everything that needs working on.

Happy Editing!

Warmest Regards,


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I am very surprised by this announcement. I wasn't expecting anything like this.

What might seem surprising to learn is, I used to talk to Hisham since the beginning and we never really stopped talking in the last year. We would meet every month or so, for coffee or lunch. We disagreed about a lot of things, but absolutely none of it ever affected the personal relationship we had. I suppose we were capable of separating that. I certainly didn't make his job any easier, but I was always direct with my opinions. I hope he forgoes any transgressions.

He would invite me to meet-ups, occasionally ask for help with something, and I helped when I could, sometimes even through our most strongest disagreements. I could disagree with him, criticize him in the strongest tone, and yet, we can still sit down for lunch and laugh. I could ask him for life advice, talk about our families, and none of it had to be about Wikimedia. 

This was an unfortunate situation, and I never really had a direct problem with Hisham. It was the larger decisions and the position he was placed in. I would hold others responsible before him, as I have an inkling that even this was someone else's decision. 

I'm going to miss talking to him.

Kind Regards

P.S. Remember me and smile, for it's better to forget than to remember me and cry.