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[board-discuss] Candidacy for a board seat: Thorsten Behrens


Dear Community, Members of the TDF, and Membership Committee,

I currently serve as a director on the board of The Document
Foundation, and I would like to run again.

My full name is Thorsten Behrens, as of today I'm 45 years
old. Together with my wonderful wife & fellow LibreOffice hacker
Bubli and my 3 sons, we live in Hamburg, Germany.

My work with the project and codebase started in 2001 as a developer
(with the then-OpenOffice.org community), which we jointly took and
founded TDF & LibreOffice with in 2010. Since then, I was serving in
various roles, including my current one in the board of
directors. Since 2008 (with a brief hiatus in 2014), I'm also a member
of the OASIS ODF technical committee. As a day job, I lead a great
team of LibreOffice developers at CIB software, helping numerous
customers to run LibreOffice reliably and securely.

Why am I running?

* TDF is now a mature organization - with a certain risk of plateauing
in its initiative and impact. I said that already in 2017, and
Florian & his team (cheered on by the current board) have meanwhile
implemented a number of measures to make TDF more resilient &
professional (recurring donation income streams, administrative
assistant for the executive director, spin-off TDC as a for-profit
entity, etc.). We continue to liaise with similar-minded
organisations (like FSFE, KDE, Gnome or OSB Alliance), where we are
represented e.g. on advisory boards, or - in the case of the OSB
Alliance - we're active in lobbying for more FLOSS use in the public
sector.

I'd like to offer my continued help here, with two focus areas:
- further increase our mentoring & community building efforts
- continue the push to have LibreOffice available everywhere it
matters, especially on cloud and app stores.

* Diversity - while our user base is amazingly diverse, and so is our
community around translation, marketing, and native language
projects - our QA and development community is still rather uniform,
in a number of metrics (gender, ethnicity, geography). Sadly we
didn't make much progress here during the ongoing board term, but
I'm glad nonetheless about the small steps: like community
contributor interviews showing & signalling our diversity, or a
dedicated diversity travel fund for our conferences. Still, there's
a lot of unfinished work here, that I'd like to continue pushing.

* Integrity - another topic I'm rather passionate about is preventing
unfair advantages: the board has a conflict of interest policy that
excludes directors from decision-making on items they might benefit
from. Additionally, no more than one-third of the members of any TDF
body (like the board, or the ESC) can be affiliated with a single
company - therefore hopefully preventing any capture or take-over of
TDF. I'd like to help keeping things that way, both in spirit and in
letter.

If you have any questions, about my person or the ideas above, please
do reach out in public or in private!

Full name: Thorsten Behrens
Email: thb@libreoffice.org
Corporate affiliation: CIB software GmbH (German software & consulting
company, member of the advisory board since
2015)

75 words candidacy statement:

I'm leading a team of LibreOffice developers at CIB, and am a
long-time TDF contributor to both code and organisation. Serving in
the current board as a director, I would like to offer my continued
help for the next two years. Things I promise to do: improve &
professionalize organisation; grow & diversify contribution; keep
things fun, fair & sustainable; and help with the largely-German
administrative grunt work.

Kind regards,

-- Thorsten

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