Board Meetings/May 22, 2020/Minutes

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May 22, 2020

Location: Online

Board of Trustees present: María Sefidari (Chair, present for part of the meeting), Nataliia Tymkiv (Vice Chair), Esra'a Al Shafei, Tanya Capuano, James Heilman, Dariusz Jemielniak, Lisa Lewin, Raju Narisetti, Shani Evenstein Sigalov, Jimmy Wales

Non-Board members present: Katherine Maher (Executive Director), Amanda Keton (Secretary; General Counsel), Jaime Villagomez (Treasurer; Chief Financial Officer), Ryan Merkley (Chief of Staff), Chuck Roslof (Senior Legal Counsel), Robyn Arville (Chief Talent & Culture Officer), Lisa Gruwell (Chief Advancement Officer), Grant Ingersoll (Chief Technology Officer), Toby Negrin (Chief Product Officer) Janeen Uzzell (Chief Operating Officer), Heather Walls (Chief Creative Officer)

Non-Board members present for a portion of the meeting: Maggie Dennis (Vice President of Community Resilience & Sustainability), Zack McCune (Director (Brand)), Denny Vrandečić

The meeting was called to order at 11:02 AM PDT. The Secretary confirmed the presence of a quorum. The Vice Chair welcomed everyone and reviewed the agenda.

Operational Updates

Katherine opened with a summary of how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia projects, as well as how the Foundation is adapting and planning to the changing environment. Lisa Gruwell presented information about revenue projections, drawing from patterns seen during the 2008-2010 recession, and she explained how the Foundation’s fundraising team is planning to modify its strategies, tactics, and priorities. Jaime, Janeen, and Katherine summarized the potential budget scenarios for the next Fiscal Year, including their recommendation to proceed with a “yellow” budget scenario based on a prediction of a 19% year-over-year drop in revenue.

After a motion by Tanya, seconded by Nataliia, the Board approved the Foundation’s provisional “yellow” budget for Fiscal Year 2020-2021.

Medium-Term Plan Priority Programs

María Sefidari joined at the beginning of this section of the meeting.

Ryan updated the Board on the status of the Movement Strategy work, including a planned series of online engagements to discuss implementation over several months. Ryan also presented an update on the Foundation’s work on systems to better address disinformation on the projects. Grant reviewed the progress that had been made on the professional API project, which is aiming to have a minimum viable product ready by early 2021.

Denny Vrandečić joined at this point of the meeting.

Katherine, Toby, and Denny shared the steps that had been taken to move the Abstract Wikipedia proposal forward, including a discussion on Meta-Wiki and the development of a budget proposal for the Foundation support needed.

After a motion by Raju, seconded by Jimmy, the Board approved the Abstract Wikipedia project.

Denny left at the conclusion of this portion of the meeting.

Trust & Safety Mandate

Maggie Dennis joined for this portion of the meeting.

The Board reviewed the latest version of its draft statement on community health, then each trustee shared their thoughts.

After a motion by María, seconded by Shani, the Board approved the statement on community health.

Brand

Zack McCune joined for this portion of the meeting.

Heather and Zack reviewed the history of the movement brand project, and the work that had been done since the February Board meeting. Zack presented the brand concept of “Interconnection” that was chosen based on the outcomes of several brand workshops and rounds of community feedback. He also shared the naming convention proposals that had been developed, along with their strengths and weaknesses. Trustees and staff shared their thoughts about the options in a round of feedback.

After a motion by Raju, seconded by James, the Board affirmed their support for the brand project.

Committee Updates

In the interest of time, the Vice Chair suggested that the committee updates be shared via email rather than during the meeting.

Executive Session

Foundation staff members were excused at this point in the meeting, and the Board held a confidential executive session. Katherine joined for a portion of the executive session. At the conclusion of the executive session, the meeting closed.