TUG 2009 election: Results and candidates' statements

From Barbara Beeton for the TUG election committee:

Nominations for TUG President and the Board of Directors in 2009 have been received and validated. Because there is a single nomination for the office of President and because there are fewer nominations for Board of Directors than there are open seats, there will be no requirement for a ballot this election.

For President, Karl Berry was nominated. As there were no other nominees, he is duly elected and will serve for another two years.

For the Board of Directors, the following individuals were nominated: Jonathan Fine, Steve Grathwohl, Jim Hefferon, Klaus Höppner, Steve Peter, David Walden. As there were fewer nominations than open positions, all the nominees are duly elected to a four-year term.

Terms for President and Members of the Board of Directors will begin with the Annual Meeting at the University of Notre Dame. Congratulations to all.

Dick Koch, Martha Kummerer and Arthur Ogawa have decided to step down at the end of their terms. On behalf of the Board, I wish to thank them for their service, and for their continued participation through July.

Announcements and information about previous elections are available, along with the notice for this election, and the roster of current and past board members: 2007, 2005, 2003, 2001, 1999, 1997.

The following candidates' statements were received for the present election, and will be printed in the first regular issue of TUGboat for 2009.

  Karl Berry

(Candidate for TUG president.)

TeX biography: I have served as TUG president since 2003 and was a board member for two terms prior to that. During my term as president, we've enacted new initiatives, expanding the scope of the special member and institutional memberships. We've also partnered with Addison-Wesley for online book sales, with Bigelow&Holmes for making the Lucida fonts available through TUG, and with Adobe making the Utopia typeface family freely available, among others.

As president, I coordinate the formal and informal meetings of the Board, provide direction and oversight to the Executive Director, and monitor TUG's financial transactions. I also serve on the conference committee, and thus have been one of the principal organizers for all TUG-sponsored conferences since 2004, both the annual meetings and the Practical TeX conferences, including web site and program creation, coordination of publicity, and so forth.

I have been on the TUG technical council for many years. I co-sponsored the creation of the TeX Development Fund in 2002, and am one of the primary system administrators and webmasters for the TUG servers. I'm also one of the production staff for the TUGboat journal.

On the TeX development side, I'm currently editor of TeX Live, the largest free software TeX distribution, and thus coordinate with other TeX projects around the world, such as CTAN, LaTeX, and pdfTeX. I developed and still maintain Web2c (Unix TeX) and its basic library Kpathsea, a freely redistributable library for path searching, Eplain (a macro package extending plain TeX), GNU Texinfo, and many other projects. I am also a co-author of TeX for the Impatient, an early comprehensive book on TeX, now freely available. I first encountered and installed TeX in 1982, as a college undergraduate.

Statement of intent: I believe TUG can best serve its members and the general TeX community by working in partnership with the other TeX user groups worldwide, and sponsoring projects and conferences that will increase interest in and use of TeX. I've been fortunate enough to be able to work essentially full time, pro bono, on TUG and TeX activities the past several years, and plan to continue doing so if re-elected.

  Jonathan Fine

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

I work for the Open University (the UK's leading provider of distance education) as a TeX expert for print media. I'm also halfway through a two-year project on putting mathematics on web pages.

In 2006--7 I set up MathTran, which now provides typesetting of TeX-notation formulas to images as a public web service, serving about a million images a month.

MathTran shows the value of TeX as a web service, which I'd like to extend to whole documents. Installing and configuring TeX can be slow and difficult. Using TeX through a web browser will help beginners.

Part of my math-on-web project is a page where students can interactively create a TeX-notation formula, say for putting on a web page or in a word-processor document.

I have a doctorate in Mathematics and although not my career I still have research interests. I have been using TeX for over 20 years, and joined TUG in 1989. For the past two years I've been Chair of the UK TeX Users Group, and have recently been re-elected for another two years.

The past three years have seen UK TUG come out of a long period of inactivity and decline. The credit for this of course belongs to the Committee and the members, and not simply myself. We've organised three successful meetings, adopted a new constitution, and set up a website with links to UK TeX resources.

As a board member I would bring to TUG a focus on a key core community, namely those who write material with lots of mathematics. I have a particular interest in providing help and support, particularly through web pages.

TUG, by virtue of TeX being a typesetting program, rightly has a focus on print media. But to flourish we must also use new media effectively. The Open University faces the same challenge, and my experience there will help TUG.

You can comment on this statement, and read the comments of others, at http://jonathanfine.wordpress.com/2009/01/31/tug-board-election/

TUG has a special responsibility to publicise TeX and related fonts, programs, documentation and other resources.

I'd like TUG to offer more to institutional members. In particular, we should help them share user support experience and resources. Supporting TeX can be daunting without outside help.

When I joined TUG there were over 150 institutional members. There are now just 27. The loss I feel the most is the Library of Congress.

  Steve Grathwohl

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Biography: I have used TeX since 1986, first as a hobby, then “professionally” after I joined Duke University Press in 1983 on the staff of the Duke Mathematical Journal. Eventually I supervised the production of the journal (for both print and online incarnations), and I wrote and maintained the class files for typesetting. Since 2005 I have been responsible for loading content for our 35 journals onto multiple platforms as well as being TeXnical liaison for Duke to Project Euclid, a hosting service for over 50 independent mathematics journals. My current work involves a significant amount of work with XML content and metadata schemas as well as being the in-house TeX specialist.

Statement: TeX has proved to be an astoundingly robust piece of software, and the continuing development of projects like LaTeX3, LuaTeX and XeTeX helps insure TeX's vitality into the future. I would like to see the TUG board continue to support these and others (like TeX Gyre and TeXworks) that contribute to a 21st-century TeX.

  Jim Hefferon

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

I have enjoyed working on the Board, trying to promote the interests of TeX and friends. In the future I would like to continue to do so, trying to balance fiscal prudence with taking the opportunities that arise.

  Klaus Höppner

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Biography: I got a PhD in Physics in 1997. After some post-doctoral fellowships I have been working working in the Control Systems group of an accelerator center in Darmstadt, Germany, since 2002. My first contact to LaTeX was in 1991, using it frequently since then.

I was preparing the CTAN snapshot on CD, distributed to the members of many user groups, from 1999 until 2002. I was heavily involved in the organization of several DANTE conferences and EuroTeX 2005. Since 2000, I am a member of the DANTE board, acting as president since 2006.

Statement: In the years since Karl Berry's presidency the cooperation of TUG and European user groups improved a lot. My candidacy is in the hopes of helping to continue this trend. Projects like TeXLive and CTAN owe their success to the work of active volunteers, but also to the support and cooperation of the user groups.

  Steve Peter

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Biography: I am a linguist and publisher originally from Illinois, but now living in New Jersey. I first encountered TeX as a technical writer documenting Mathematica. Now I use TeX and friends (these days, lots of ConTeXt) for a majority of my publishing work, and occasionally consult on it. I am especially interested in multilingual typography and finding a sane way to typeset all of those crazy symbolisms linguists create. As if that weren't bad enough, I've recently begun studying typeface design.

I got involved in TUG via translations for TUGboat, where I also work on the production team. This past year, I was on the organizing committee for PracTeX San Francisco, co-edited the TUG 2004 conference pre-proceedings, and was appointed to the TUG Board (thanks, Karl!). Working with and for the community has been so rewarding that I've decided to run for a regular term on the board.

Statement: The future of TeX and TUG lies in communication and working together to promote and sustain the amazing typographic quality associated with TeX and friends. I am especially interested in having TUG support various projects (technical and artistic) that will serve to bolster TeX and TUG's visibility in the world at large.

  David Walden

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Biography: I was supposed to be studying math as an undergraduate at San Francisco State College; but, from my junior year I was hacking on the school's IBM 1620 computer. While working as a computer programmer at MIT's Lincoln Laboratory, I did the course work for a master's degree in computer science at MIT. Most of my career was at Bolt Beranek and Newman Inc. (BBN) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where I was, in turn, a computer programmer, technical manager, and general manager. At BBN, I had the good fortune to be part of BBN's small ARPANET development team. Later I was involved in a variety of high tech professional services and product businesses, working in a variety of roles (technical, operations, business, and customer oriented).

Throughout my business career and now during my so-called retirement years, I have always done considerable writing and editing. This led to my involvement since the late 1990s with TeX, becoming a member of TUG, and now as a TUG volunteer. I have served as a member of the TUG Board for the last three years and also served in the role of Treasurer (I know bookkeeping from my business career). I have used LaTeX to write three published books and numerous articles. I have contributed to The PracTeX Journal since its inception, I founded TUG's Interview Corner, and I have helped behind the scenes with the TUGboat web site.

You can learn more about me at http://www.walden-family.com and at http://tug.org/interviews/interview-files/dave-walden.html.

Statement: I am interested in continuing to serve on the TUG Board for three reasons:

  1. To serve the community that has so generously served me via comp.text.tex, CTAN, TUGboat, etc.
  2. As a way of helping maintain the viability for years to come of TeX and the TeX world, entities I would call “national treasures” except for their world wide nature.
  3. Because rubbing shoulders closely with various TUG members helps me learn more about TeX faster.

As a TUG Board member, my frame of mind has been to get things done quickly and pragmatically with enough generality so evolution is possible.