2009-2010 AGM/Treasurer/Steve

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Greetings all,

First, I’d like to publicly thank Sarah and Robert for their kindness in nominating me for the position of Treasurer. I appreciate the level of trust that is expected of this particular position and I can assure you all that in terms of this required attribute alone, my actions, should I be elected, will be above reproach at all times.

I have met many of you either anonymously through the pages of various Wikipedia projects, or, where I have been lucky at the pleasure of the meeting, at the GLAM-Wiki conference in Canberra this year. For those of you that were at that conference it is reasonably likely that I spoke to you at registration counter which is the role I tried to assist in when we all arrived at the National War Museum.

That said, and especially for those that have not met me, nor had occasion to talk to me, it is probably also useful to provide the following brief snippet of who I am in real life.

As a means of introduction

My full name is Steve Peters. I am Melbourne born and bred but left in my early adulthood to travel the world and most of Australia as a part of my various careers. I have a background in the Department of Defence; the Australian Federal Police; and the NSW State Police. I have some educational qualifications – a double degree at Bachelor’s Level in Social Science and Psychology; a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management (particularly in Law) by coursework; and a Master of Arts by thesis. Currently, for personal interest, I have 60% completed a Diploma of Teaching (Yoga) – something left field for me but also one of my broad personal interests. I have also worked for some years as the Director of International Education for an Australian University, and so have a reasonably good understanding of the bureaucracy involved in that area of Australian organisations.

Some years ago I decided to pursue my main interest – Industrial & Employment Law – and I am now the Senior Partner of a firm that works in this specialised field, with a client base of 6150 companies across Australia, and some spattering into New Zealand, South Africa and the USA. This is my main real life occupation, although I run two other companies as well.

I travel to Sydney, Melbourne, and Canberra quite frequently but when not travelling my home base is currently in the Wagga Wagga area. I also travel and have travelled widely overseas - which may be somewhat useful to the committee from time to time.

History as a Wikimedian

I’ve just clicked over the 4 years mark on the English Wikipedia. During that time I have collected about 24,500 edits, including starting about 360 new articles. I’ve been an administrator for about 2 years and 5 months – and I have a clean record with regards blocks etc. My other main work has been at Commons with over 2,200 edits – including the uploading of 366 images. I’ve also added edits at some of the other projects around the place.

Transferable skills

Over the years I have held voluntary positions in numerous organisations, including, neighbourhood watch; blue light disco; pre-schools; parent & citizens committees; public theatre organisations; etc. I have also held public meetings as a stand in chairperson for such as Women’s Refuges; Aboriginal organisations; and AGM’ing on behalf of changing boards of directors for private companies etc. On some occasions I have been the President or General Manager, sometimes a Vice or Deputy President, sometimes a Secretary, and sometimes a Treasurer – plus many other non-executive roles.

Whilst each of these roles have come with their own set of rules as reflective of the type of organisation that I was a part of – I think (and hope you agree) that I will have some transferrable skills that I can bring to the executive of Wikimedia Australia.

What are my intentions if elected?

I tend to display a get in and get things done type of behaviour. That doesn’t mean that I don’t aim towards the longer term – and I am very, very patient person if the need arises – but in many cases if it needs to be done, and I have time to help (within the rules) then I start the job or look to gain assistance from others willing to help.

From that perspective I have taken and continue to take note of all of the ideas that others in this chapter put forward from time to time and I am supportive of the consideration, discussion and as accepted implementation of those ideas. Indeed I will go so far as to say that I have no other agenda but to assist - at least for the year following my election, should that be the end result - the committee and the chapter in moving forward to these larger ideas. That said I am no pushover and will argue my case or the case of others when and if required.

Additionally, in my experience, the position of treasurer is a functional one that requires amongst other things the prompt collection and receipt of monies that become due or that are volunteered by donation. No doubt it will require accurate record keeping of such monies, memberships. Additionally prompt collection and payment of expenditure items will be made by on behalf of the chapter – and towards that end I tend to be very contactable – through emails, mobile, etc. I’m almost always near a computer so electronic banking presents no problem in regards to access or timeliness.

I intend to provide those services with diligence and with the accuracy that is deserved.

Further, as I have indicated in a general email to all members, I am more than willing to assist the Secretary in what I see as an immediate need that that position has in maintaining membership records which must by their very nature involve membership payments; recording them to a spreadsheet, and maintaining a database of email addresses etc so that reminders etc for membership payments are sent as necessary. Whilst I note that there are certain obligations that are upon the Secretary for some of this work, I personally see no impediment to the Treasurer assisting in that task. From my perspective I can unequivocally state that I would have absolutely no difficulty in working with the current Secretary on this task. I have also added elsewhere that I have numerous capital resources that can assist me/us in that task, and given normal expense considerations I will be more than willing to offer those resources to the chapter as often as they are needed.

I say all of the above as a reflection of my previous statement that I tend to get in and get things done attitude – and I do not mean by that offer to reflect any lack of interest in the other views that have been made which suggest a new role be created for some of these tasks. In other words I will be happy to assist until such time as a new solution is presented.

In conclusion

I intend to support our chapter in its continuing growth towards becoming a first-class organisation that supports the general charter of providing free information of the highest possible quality.

I ask your vote in support if you feel that my experience and willingness to assist is worthy of that response.

I wish all candidates (for this position and for all others) the best of luck. I will be happy to answer further questions either by our mailing list or by private email.

Steve Peters
Candidate - position of Treasurer

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