[Foundation-l] Provisional Volunteer Council - proposal sent to the Board

Nathan nawrich at gmail.com
Wed Apr 2 23:53:36 UTC 2008

The problem is in both the wording and the concept - there is no
defined problem, and no particular reason to think that the Volunteer
Council as designed in this resolution would solve any problem even
were it to be defined. You say the path to the Volunteer Council is to
create the Provisional Council - well, you'll note that this path is not
outlined in the resolution. You'll additionally note that not just one or
two minor details but significant core elements of the resolution must
be removed entirely in order to even make it plausibly legal. What this
means to me is that dedicated and well meaning people have, again
as many times before in this and other organizations, designed a
cumbersome bureaucracy without a clear vision for what it will achieve
or how it will do so.

We have a volunteer council, responsive and responsible to the community,
that leads the Foundation and its community to the extent that it can be
lead. Its called the Board of Trustees - why introduce a barrier between
us and them? It exacerbates any issue of distance you might already
perceive, and when a legal opinion says that the VC can have no formal
power that exceeds that of the Board... What you'll have then is a nicely
formal and self important gatekeeper.


On 4/2/08, Andrew Whitworth <wknight8111 at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 2, 2008 at 4:50 PM, Nathan <nawrich at gmail.com> wrote:
> > I'm sorry Andrew, but you are completely wrong.
> I may certainly be wrong about some things, but "completely wrong"
> seems like a bit of an exaggeration to me. I guess I don't see as many
> huge problems with the resolution as you see, and I'm not prepared to
> completely sideline something so important as the volunteer council
> because of word choice nit-pickery.
> If we change point (2) to say:
> Without restricting the generality of this provision the purposes
> of the Volunteer Council may include:
> (notice the change of the word "shall" to "may"), then all of the
> problems that you've mentioned basically disappear. Of course, we
> could go a step further and completely erase point 2.3.
> >  For instance - the resolution
> >  creates the Volunteer Council, not a Provisional Volunteer Council.
> Doesn't
> >  that strike you as something that should be corrected?
> No. The intention is to create a volunteer council. The path to that
> is by creating an exploratory provisional council. If you notice, the
> list of names in this proposal are members to be appointed to a newly
> created PVC, not a VC. The PVC is not an end in itself, but is a step
> taken in the eventual, but inevitable creation of the VC. If you want
> to change the wording to make this more clear, that would be easy to
> do without changing the obviously intended meaning of it.
> --Andrew Whitworth
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