Continuing with the theme of change at the Foundation, which I have covered in the last few issues of ASW, the size of the Board of Governors has been undergoing a thorough review since May 2011. Our Board comprises 44 positions with authorization for up to 50. The original intent was to have global representation that would bring an international viewpoint and opinions to Board meetings. However, it became evident to Board members that the Board was too large and a more manageable number would move the Foundation forward.
The chairman of the Nominating and Governance Committee, William (Bill) McCabe, was tasked by the chairman of the Board, Lynn Brubaker, to come up with a transition plan to scale down the size of the Board. Bill, with other members’ input, launched a plan last May to “right size” our Board. Now this was no easy task! It was determined that: (a) the Board structure would represent the global community that the Foundation serves, with a particular focus on areas of greatest need; (b) it would enable the Foundation leadership to pursue its mission with clear supportive guidance, knowledgeable oversight and the room for initiative; and (c) the structure would afford each Board member the opportunity and accountability to meaningfully contribute to the Foundation’s success.
One year and many telephone calls and emails later, the authorized size of the Board was set at 30. Ten regions — Africa, Australia-New Zealand, the Commonwealth of Independent States, Europe, Latin America, Middle East, North America, North Asia, South Asia, and Southwest Asia — will be represented, and several Board members graciously agreed to step down so that Board representation could be more evenly distributed across the regions.
Within the Board will be a smaller contingent known as the Foundation Governance Council. Its 11 members will include the chairman, chair-elect, past chair, FSF president/CEO, treasurer and chair of the Audit-Finance Committee, lead governor of initiatives oversight, lead governor of inter-regional affairs, lead governor of business segments, chair of the Compensation Committee, chair of the Nominations/Governance Committee, and general counsel/secretary. They will provide oversight governance of Foundation business matters and staff.
I would like to recognize those Board members who have stepped down. All of them have been dedicated and have contributed to the work of the Foundation. They are Bob Aaronson, Victor Aguado, Mohammed Berenji, Jens Bjarnson, Ed Bolen, Manfred Brennwald, Carol Carmody, Jim Coyne, Don Gunther, John Johnson, Gen. Abdel Kato, John O’Brien, Nick Sabatini, Lou Seno, Ken Smart, Don Spruston, Mike Sweeney, Ray Valeika, Bob Weatherly, Michel Wachenheim, and Henk Wolleswinkel. I want to express on behalf of the staff our gratitude for their help and insight on the many projects and ideas they have provided to us along the way.
One final note: Foundation Governance Council positions are not paid. All of the past and current members deserve recognition for their support in the past and their vision for the future — particularly Bill McCabe.