CIRA elections - 2012

September 21, 2012

 If you are a member of CIRA (Canadian Internet Registration Authority) you can now cast your vote for the board of directors.  There will be 5 new directors chosen this year.  The voting period is from Sept. 19-Sept 26.  I have been participating in the online debates and met a number of the candidates at this week's CIRA AGM.  

Here are my picks for director:

 Member's slate: 

Kevin McArthur -- has really worked hard all year around for the last few years to keep tabs on CIRA.  Very knowledgeable both technically and policy-wise, Kevin has a very activist agenda and will be a good advocate for members who want to see CIRA be more open and public policy oriented.

Michael Geist -- well known and respected, public policy oriented with lots of influence outside of the Board.  I particularly like his promotion of a new governance model which would separate CIRA's registry function from an independent, public policy arm supported by some of the revenues generated by the registry.

Nomination Committee (nomcom) slate:

This was a much harder choice.  The nomcom candidates are much more distant.  Some have a lot of experience in governance but none in Internet policy or domain name services. My reasons for these choices are noted -- but even to me, some seem rather strange -- the result of too little choice, rather than too much and little actual contact with the candidates.  In the end, I chose 2 candidates whom I was able to meet and talk to at the AGM and one who seriously participated in the member forum.  

Bill Sandiford -- founding member and president of CNOC -- Canadian Network Operators Consortium -- very respected in the ISP community.  This was not a difficult choice.

William Gibson -- former CEO of MEC -- lots of board experience,  comes across as very pragmatic and solution oriented.  Although he is a relative newcomer to Internet issues, he has returned after failing to win last year and done considerable homework along the way.  He is partly on my list because he was a full participant in the election forum -- unlike most of the other nomination committee candidates .  S0, despite the fact that I completely disagree with his stand on election reform, at least I know where he stands.  His platform identifies the need for CIRA to strengthen its brand and branding is something Gibson seems to know quite a bit about.

Carole Mackaay -- the only woman on the nomination committee list, and I am reluctant to vote for an all-male slate.  Carole is a Quebec-based lawyer, has lots experience in governance, worked for Molson and ViaRail and is on the board of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. Unfortunately, she really doesn't have any experience in Internet policy or the CIRA's core services.  Her platform focusses mostly on financial issues which probably affect boards in general.  But, we really need more women on boards of all kinds.

I think CIRA really dropped the ball here in not having more women on this part of the slate and I will make that point with them when this is all over.

Whatever your choices, please vote.  CIRA is a Canadian public resource, a non-profit company that belongs to you and me.  Let's make our voices heard.