Announcing the members of the Leadership Development Working Group!

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Dawn Hudson, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

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We are excited to announce the members of the Leadership Development Working Group. After receiving more than 60 applications, a panel of community members (4) and Wikimedia Foundation staff (2) conducted an anonymous review. Fifteen members were selected for the working group. 

Diversity and representation were important considerations. We are happy to share that the group has representatives from all 8 regions [1] (two from each region, except US + Canada have one). The group size has expanded from 12 to 15 members to increase diversity. Together, the group members speak at least 17 languages. Members hold different roles in the movement, including: a meta-organizer, a community-elected Steward, a past Affiliate executive director, and a jack-of-all-trades volunteer. The members range in their years in the movement, from newer community members to community members with more than 15 years of experience. Regarding gender, we have 7 women, 6 men, 1 non-binary and gender-fluid person, and 1 preferred not to identify their gender. 

A big welcome to the members of the Leadership Development Working Group! The members of the group will have a 1-year term and begin meeting at the end of May 2022. The group will be supported by a facilitator, Jyotsna Sara George, who will work closely with the group to support their collaboration and process. We look forward to sharing more information once the group begins their work together!

Without further ado, let us introduce you to the members of the Leadership Development Working Group: 

Hello! I go by Vermont on Wikimedia projects. I’m a Wikimedia Steward, admin and CheckUser on Meta-Wiki and the Simple English Wikipedia, and a Merchandise Giveaways coordinator. I’ve joined this group in the interest of supporting community and leadership development from a practical standpoint, and promoting editor retention and development in line with current movement priorities and Wikimedia’s mission.

Hi, I’m Flavia Doria (she/her), I’m Brazilian, living in Portugal since 2016, and I’ve been involved with the Wikimedia Movement since early 2020. I’m currently working as Ambassador of the Portuguese-speaking community for the Wikimedia Foundation. As a volunteer I’m part of the Wikipedia group Wiki Editoras Lx, the first and perhaps only Lusophone group composed only by women and non-binary people who edit within the gender theme. In my group I work in several fronts such as training new users, organizing events and promoting debate within the community. From the beginning, I quickly became more involved in issues related to decision-making within the Movement and the importance of including marginalized groups from our community in these debates and how this inclusion is key to keeping Wikimedia projects relevant to society.

I am also a communicologist and journalist, I have a special interest in the social and political aspect of the Information and Communications Technology debate, and have recently published an academic paper on gender and Wikipedia and hope to do so more often.

Now as a member of the Leadership Development Working Group, I hope that we can collectively learn how to use our resources to promote more autonomy for our communities, especially those who fall outside of our standard average user profile. I am excited to meet more people interested in this debate and I look forward to working with all of you!

I’m Francesc, a Catalan-language editor from València. I’ve been a very active editor for a 

long time, but I haven’t been that much involved with international communities until 2019.  

I’m very excited on discovering and learning new things about Wikipedia.

I am a food safety specialist and a volunteer contributor to Wikipedia for more than 8 years, building capacity for new editors, nurturing, and helping new editors to grow in  Nigeria. 

I co-founded the Wikimedia User Group Nigeria, (now a charitable organization in Nigeria) to support volunteers and continue to provide both technical and administrative support for the volunteers. 

During the peak of the COVID-19, Isaac led an initiative in partnership with the Moleskine Foundation to create Wikipedia articles relating to COVID-19 in local languages and produced a video in Yorùbà language to educate the people with little or no education on how to avoid being infected with COVID-19 and to highlight how Wikipedia is helping to fight the pandemic. The video featured notable film actors in Nigeria. 

I was nominated as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2020.

Having realized that millions of articles on Wikipedia are lacking photos to illustrate them, I launched an international campaign called “Wikipedia Pages Wanting Photos Campaign” in 2020 to engage volunteers during the COVID-19 pandemic by encouraging Wikipedia editors across the world to add images from Wikimedia Commons to Wikipedia articles.

In 2021, I co-lead an initiative to document and preserve Nigerian languages that are not written or thought in Schools. More than 50 audiovisuals were created in the first stage. 

I am a sysop on the Yoruba Wikipedia, a member of the Wiki Indaba Steering Committee (WISCOM), and a former member of the Individual Engagement Grant Committee and Project Grant Committee. 

I am from an underrepresented community and one of the questions that often come to my mind is “why are Africans not always included in leadership roles within the movement?” WMF does a better job of including Africans but it’s often very difficult. Perhaps we usually do not make input on policy discussions or participle in related discussions. Africans are part of the movement, we should strive to participate in decision-making discussions as much as possible. The Wikimedia movement is growing at a very fast rate and leadership development is pivotal to our mission. This is my intrinsic motivation for joining the leadership working group.

My name is Goodness Ignatius (she/her) from Nigeria and my username across all wikis is Olugold. I’m a member of the Igbo Wikimedians User Group (IWUG). I am glad to be a part of this group and I’m here to collaborate with other team members to support the group’s mission.

I’m Ivan (User:ProtoplasmaKid), from Mexico, Wikimedian more than a decade ago and Spanish Wikipedia editor since 2006 and admin since 2016. Former 2021 BoT candidate. Human Rights Defender and Activist. I would love to be able to contribute to a better movement with shared knowledge in order to enrich what we collectively know about leadership. 

I am Rocío Consales and I have been participating in different instances of the Wikimedia movement for more than 17 years. I was director, vice president and president of the board of Wikimedia Chile.

I joined the working group to contribute from my experience with the various lessons I have learned over the years.

I have a degree in Philosophy from the University of Chile and a Master’s Degree in Publishing (Publisher) from the Pompeu Fabra University from 2020 to 2021. I am a publisher, specialized in small format books. I currently live in Luxembourg.

“Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.” Warren Bennis. In any community, if we are ambitious to develop it, I think the first step is to build leaders! 

This is Donia Domiaty. an Egyptian medical student. I joined Arabic Wikipedia for the first time in February 2019. By the end of 2019, I had created more than 100 articles; more of them were in medicine. I participated in the virtual Wikimania 2021 by 2 sessions; one of them was a solo session. I am a member of many user groups, a winner of many competitions, and an organizer of many edit-a-thons and photo competitions whether local in Egypt or throughout the whole Arabic community.

Despite being a 21-year-old medical student, I have 3-year-experience of leading groups, inside and outside wikiprojects.

For what is inside wiki projects, I founded and managed Wikipedian Editor Project, a project that reaches all Arab countries through online workshops and edit-a-thons to encourage more volunteers to participate and edit on Arabic Wikipedia and learn more about sister projects, during the previous 2 years, I led my project and tried to make some participants leaders for initiatives and events related to the project. On the other side, in many communities other than the Wikimedia community, I was nominated to be head of HR in many projects inside or outside my university. Being an HR manager for a long time made me deal with many leaders in many fields, which helped me improve my leadership and negotiation skills this is what inspired me that Leadership is an acquired skill and anyone can acquire it by working on themselves.  

A leader has good communication skills, inspiration, creativity, decision-making skills, and many other skills. And we need Leader characters in all Wikimedia communities.

I am Nada Alfarra, I am an intern doctor from Palestine. I am a member of Wikimedia Levant. Being a member of such active group enhances my eagerness to upgrade my leadership skills and experience. I have organized workshops to document Levantine authors’ works on Arabic Wikipedia and co-organized an online Interwiki Women Collaboration 2020 workshop. I have also guided few newcomers in Wikimedia Levant to members to use Photoshop for editing photos and uploading to Wikimedia Commons. This is the outcome of my experience as an online project coordinator for a project to enrich the digital Arabic content for children with 100 stories translated from English to Arabic. I am a long-life learner and I believe that Leadership Development Working Group will guide my journey to influence people to be more proactive, cooperative and decision makers and this group will connect me with mutual minds where I can learn better and have our collective endeavors be more effective.

Wikimedian since 2006, creator of Commons Quality Images and what has been adopted as basic image requirements. Admin on Commons, retired in good standing as an admin on en.Wikipedia after 13 years service. Two years as President of Wikimedia Australia, and 4 as Vice President. Various terms on VRT, part of the development of ESEAP and COT for the cancelled 2020 Wikimania, then on the COT for Wikimania 2021 created the scholarship process for that. Lead the development of Nyungar Wikipedia, ran multiple workshops given many talks including to on National Radio and Television shows. My goal now is to pass on my knowledge, encourage new leaders to step up and take the movement into the future.

Hi! I am Imelda, a volunteer Wikimedian from the Philippines. I joined this group to be able to share my experiences, both as an organizer and editor of different Wikiprojects, in developing a shared understanding of what leadership is and how we can leverage this shared definition to improve editing and organizing experience of every volunteer around the Movement, especially of those communities around the East and Southeast Asian countries.

Hi everyone, my name’s Jan! I live in Germany, where I currently study Biochemistry. I have been a soft skills trainer for a couple of student NGOs for a little over a year; right now, I’m aiming at professionalising this hobby of mine and get some of my ideas implemented. So when I read about the Leadership Development working group, I immediately applied as I see huge potential in leadership training for the movement. I’m excited to start developing thoughts about the way the we might provide capacity building.

Erokhin has been a member of the Wikimedia Movement for over 12 years. He was a member of Wikimedia Russia for 5 years. As one of the members of Wikimedia RU, I have organized and conducted several wiki expeditions and wiki tours in Russia and other countries. I have interacted with different bodies of state power, local government, commercial and non-commercial organizations, and private persons to transfer their resources to free licenses, and increase their integration into Wikipedia. First and foremost, I work on Wikimedia projects in Russian, and in languages of the peoples of Russia and the former Soviet Union. There is a desire and time to develop the Wikimedia movement in North Asia and Central Asia, and the rest will follow. I am motivated by the opportunity to improve and develop my skills and competencies for better participation in the Wikimedia Movement, to be more useful and more effective to the community and the Wikimedia Foundation.

​​I am Nitesh and my user name is Nitesh Gill. I belong to Punjab, India. I am pursuing my PhD in Punjabi Literature. I am active editor of Punjabi Wikipedia since 2015. I am a contact person of Punjabi Wikimedians User Group and admin on Punjabi Wikipedia. I have participated and conducted many activities. I am also leading and coordinating a few projects in volunteer capacity. Nowadays, I am trying to focus that others who are long time Wikimedians come forward and take a lead on their own. The same thing I am doing in my community. When I came to know about this working group I read about it and I want to be becoming a part of it. The group has potential to encourage people to take initiative for their own communities or people. I believe I will be play a good part in this group.

From the experience of several years of fieldwork in the Wikimedia Movement in South Asia, I can feel the urge to unify the process of creating and nurturing leadership in the movement. This is very much needed to secure the sustainability of the movement; especially for the underrepresented communities, this can be a game-changer. The process of leadership development may vary due to the social and geographical context of any target Wikimedia community, I’m very much interested to learn about different Wikimedia communities from all over the world and working with them closely to identify the scopes and processes to develop leadership there and for the same reason, I considered joining the Leadership Development Working Group.

[1] The 8 regions are: Middle East and North Africa; Sub-Saharan Africa; East, Southeast Asia, and Pacific (ESEAP); South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC); Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and Central Asia; Northern and Western Europe; United States and Canada; Latin America (LATAM) and the Caribbean

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