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Executive Director Candidate Committee

Concluding Recommendation; Letter to members and contributors

July 30, 2012

Dear OpenStack members and contributors,

One of the first important tasks for the OpenStack Foundation Board of Directors, once elected, is to appoint the first Executive Director of the Foundation. The Executive Director will act as Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation and shall, subject to the direction of the Board of Directors, have general supervision, direction and control of the business and the officers of the Foundation.

In anticipation of the Foundation being formed and the Board being appointed and elected, and in order to smooth the transition to operating as a Foundation, the 19 companies who publicly committed to be Platinum and Gold members formed a committee in May 2012 to conduct a process to define a job description, invite applications, interview candidates, and select a candidate to recommend to the Board (once formed) for the Executive Director role.

After a diligent and inclusive process by the committee, which included preparing and posting a comprehensive job description, receiving and reviewing over 40 applications, and panel style interviews of 5 short-listed candidates, the Executive Director search committee has recommended Jonathan Bryce for the Executive Director position.

The recommendation of Jonathan Bryce as Executive Director will be considered at the first meeting of the Board of the Foundation, anticipated to be held on August 28th, 2012 after the completion of Board member appointments and elections. The process the committee developed and used to arrive at its recommendation is outlined on this wiki page. The job description containing a complete listing of the job criteria and detailed job responsibilities is also contained within this wiki page.


Committee Members

  • Alan Clark (chair)
  • Boris Renski
  • Brian Stevens
  • Cliff Young
  • Eileen Evans
  • Ewan Mellor
  • Jim Curry
  • Jon Mittelhauser
  • Sean Roberts
  • Simon Anderson
  • Tim Bell
  • Todd Moore
  • Tristan Goode
  • Winston Damarillo

Background and Process

Based on action items resulting from the May 9th F2F a Executive Director Candidate committee is being formed to formulate the criteria, to vet possible candidates for the role and to provide a recommendation to the Foundation board. The efforts of the committee will result in ensuring that all are on the same page with the roles, responsibilities, priorities and goals for the ED. Writing these down will be a very good thing for the ED and for the members. While it is the responsibility of the Board to place the ED, this committee can in the interim go through the steps enabling the Board to immediately act. Also having the persons on the committee, who will potentially be the board helps assure that the board will adopt the committees results and recommendations.

The committee members are:

  • Alan Clark (chair)
  • Boris Renski
  • Brian Stevens
  • Cliff Young
  • Eileen Evans
  • Ewan Mellor
  • Jim Curry
  • Cole Crawford replaced by Jon Mittelhauser
  • Sean Roberts
  • Simon Anderson
  • Tim Bell
  • Todd Moore
  • Tristan Goode
  • Winston Damarillo
  • Lauren Sell (For communications)

The output of this committee effort is a candidate recommendation to the board for approval along with a recommendation for the first year incentive goals.

All work will be posted and updated on this wiki page.

The following is the Committee's steps/schedule that align with the Drafting Committees time line.

May 23-30
May 30
June 6
June 11
June 14
June 22
June 27
July 9 - 13
July 18
August 28

Job Description and Candidate Criteria


OpenStackFoundation is an independent body being established to provide shared resources to help achieve the

OpenStackMission of Protecting, Empowering, and Promoting

OpenStacksoftware and the community around it, including users, developers and the entire ecosystem.

Community wide goals the Foundation will help achieve are:

  • Make OpenStack a ubiquitous cloud operating system
  • Deliver high quality software releases that companies can rely on to run their business
  • Ensure interoperability among OpenStack clouds
  • Nurture a healthy community, with broad participation and a sharp focus on the OpenStack Mission
  • Grow the ecosystem around OpenStack to strengthen the platform and provide opportunity
  • Build and protect the OpenStack brand to the benefit of the community's participants
  • Ensure that the OpenStack community is excited about the OpenStack vision and future direction


The Executive Director will have a very high profile role in the open source software community, the cloud computing industry, and the software industry generally. The OpenStack Foundation will be one of the highest profile emerging open source software Foundations in the world, and the Executive Director will have a unique opportunity to facilitate the growth of a global community, together building the next big platform in cloud computing.

The day-to-day operations of the Foundation will be overseen by the Executive Director, who will report to the Board of Directors of the Foundation, and who may hire staff as needed to meet the goals of the Foundation. Employed and non-employed personnel may be used to carry out the work of the Foundation. The employed staff is expected to be a small, focused team tasked with coordinating resources from the larger community in an independent way (e.g. community management, marketing and event management, ensuring access to common infrastructure).

Employed staff will report direct to the Executive Director. It is anticipated that employed staff may be distributed around the US and world.

Non-employed personnel may still occupy official offices without being on the payroll. Even though they may be employed by a participating company, Gold Member, or Platinum Member, they should attempt to act in the best interests of OpenStack as a whole when performing their duties. Additional outside professionals, such as an independent attorney, may also be used as needed. Where possible, the Foundation also enables self-service and broad access to community resources and assets.


The Executive Director is ultimately responsible for the overall management of the Foundation and all aspects of the Foundation’s operations. By the authority delegated by the Board of Directors, the Executive Director will have full discretionary power to execute the by-laws, policies, and directives of the Board of Directors of the Foundation.

The formation documents of the Foundation are being developed alongside the search process for an Executive Director, and candidates will be kept informed of the by-laws and organization structure of the Foundation as it gets finalized, including sections specifying the Executive Director’s authority.


The Executive Director has overall responsibility to ensure that the Mission and objectives of the Foundation are clearly defined and broadly understood, and that Foundation activities are directed towards the successful achievement of stated goals & objectives. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors and has primary responsibilities of supervision of Foundation programs and Foundation employees and setting the overall tone and vision for the Foundation.

As Project Director, the Executive Director has the day-to-day responsibility of managing the Foundation. The Executive assumes the overall leadership role in guiding all strategy, administrative, fiscal, and community-oriented program activities as delineated by the policies adopted by the Board of Directors and the Technical Committee. The Executive Director will be responsible for the following specific areas of the Foundation:

Promotion of the OpenStack Mission

Co-ordination of and Collaboration between the Board of Directors, and between key member groups and individuals

Program Planning, Development, and Evaluation

Fiscal Management



Confidential Records and Files


Other Duties as Assigned

RESPONSIBILITIES: A. Planning, Development, And Implementation

It is the Executive Director's responsibility to plan and develop programs as funded by the members and approved by the Board of Directors. The main planning, development, and implementation functions include:

  1. Planning and executing promotion and partnering activities to ensure that OpenStack becomes the leading cloud platform adopted by enterprise and service providers worldwide.
  2. Community development activities to ensure a robust and broad community participation and contribution to OpenStack.
  3. Public relations, including all requests for technical assistance.
  4. Cooperation with the organizations in development of a course of the organizational objectives.
  5. Development of agreements with companies and participating partners.
  6. Working closely with the appropriate funding sources to ensure the long term viability of the Foundation.
  7. Preparing grants and contracts for initial or continued funding for approval by the Board.
  8. Developing and implementing evaluations of program goals, and objectives.
  9. Developing goals and objectives for consideration by the Board.
  10. Provide Board with updated program and mission changes. Further implementation and guidance of the Executive Director's duties and responsibilities will be found in the by-laws of the corporation.

RESPONSIBILITIES: B. Fiscal Management

The Executive Director shall assist, advise, and act for the Board of Directors in the following:

  1. Develop an annual budget for review and approval by the Board; ensure that expenditures are within the budgeted amounts; and prepare budget revisions as needed through the year.
  2. Establish and maintain a fudiciary responsibility including cash management & accounting policies set forth and approved by the Foundation Board of Directors.
  3. Authorize purchase orders, vouchers, and payments within parameters set in the by-laws.
  4. Maintain an inventory of the Foundation’s property and protect all such property.
  5. Administer contracts as approved by the Board.
  6. Manage an annual audit of the Foundations books & records.


The Executive Director is responsible for ensuring the following environmental standards are met:

  1. Establishment of an environment that enhances the positive self-image of the staff and preserves human dignity.
  2. Equipping and maintaining an environment that ensures the health and safety of staff.
  3. Ensuring documentation of planned programs consistent at all times with the needs of members for Foundation promotion activities. .


The Executive Director shall is authorized to transact all people actions subject to the Personnel Policies and Procedures (Personnel Manual), and to report such actions as necessary to the Board. The Executive Director is responsible for:

  1. Recruitment, hiring, staffing, and supervision of personnel.
  2. Being available for counseling of staff.
  3. Ensuring that performance evaluations of all staff are completed according to the Personnel Manual.
  4. Determining the need for travel and training of all employees, and approval or denial of staff travel and training requests consistent with the travel and training budget approved by the Board.
  5. Promotion, demotion, disciplinary action, and exit interviews, in accordance with the Personnel Manual.
  6. Annual review and update of Personnel Manual and all job descriptions for Board consideration.

RESPONSIBILITIES: E. Confidential Records and Files

All records, reports, and other materials relating to shall be kept in a locked file under the direction of the Executive Director. The responsibility for keeping accurate and complete records as prescribed by law.


The Executive Director is responsible for all reports required by members or the Board of Directors. Such reports include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Monthly narrative (Executive Director's Report)
  2. Monthly statistical reports
  3. Quarterly progress evaluation
  4. Minutes of all staff meetings
  5. Quality assurance reports
  6. Copies of all state, federal, and local inspection reports

RESPONSIBILITIES: G. Other Duties as Assigned

The Executive Director shall perform other duties as prescribed by the Board of Directors.


The Executive Director may delegate duties, responsibilities, and authority to carry out functions within the parameters of the Personnel Manual.


  • Exempt, professional management position; work hours flexible, depending on the needs of the job.
  • 50%+ travel anticipated.
  • Foundation’s Employee Handbook takes effect on date of hire.
  • Salary: dependent on experience and education.


  1. Working knowledge of OpenStack and the OpenStack community preferred.
  2. Strong domain knowledge in cloud platforms and architectures.
  3. MBA/MPA or Bachelor’s degree in Business or Public Administration, and/or Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree in Computer Science preferred.
  4. Experience in administration of voluntee or non-profit organizations, with open source software experience preferred.
  5. Candidates will demonstrate strong skills in fiscal management, resource development and maintenance, organizational and program planning, and public relations.
  6. Previous experience working with volunteers and knowledge and understanding of technology.
  7. Track record of effectively leading an international scale organization composed of community volunteers, corporate sponsors, institutional affiliations and industry associations with proven success in developing and influencing collaborative relationships.
  8. Demonstrated ability to earn the trust and respect of diverse groups of people.
  9. Excellent sense of professionalism, judgment and diplomacy to manage situations and determine appropriate course of action.
  10. Past success working with a Board of Directors with the ability to cultivate existing board member relationships.
  11. Excellence in organizational management with the ability to coach staff, manage and develop high-performance teams, set and achieve strategic objectives, and manage a budget.
  12. Strong written and verbal communication skills: a persuasive and passionate communicator with excellent interpersonal and multidisciplinary project skills.
  13. Strong marketing, public relations, and fundraising experience with the ability to engage a wide range of stakeholders and cultures.

A pdf and .doc copy of the posted Executive Director candidate criteria and job description: Executive_Director_OpenStack_Job_Description_Draft_06_11_2012.[pdf

OpenStack Foundation Executive Director Candidate Sourcing Process

To ensure that the process be as transparant and fair as possible for all candidates and members, the committee developed and adopted the following process for discovering and interviewing candidates

1. Objective:

The objective of this document is to outline the process to be followed by the members of the OpenStack Foundation executive committee to source and pre-selecting the candidates for the executive director role. Depending on the number of credible candidates available for the position, the process may need to be calibrated on the ongoing basis. The end goal of the process is to identify several candidates for the executive director and present the candidates to the foundation board. It is understood by all members of the committee that, once formed, the foundation board will be responsible for making the final appointment of the executive director.

2. Responsible Party:

Executive committee members acknowledge the necessity of identifying a single, responsible party to drive the sourcing process, while keeping it transparent all members of the committee. It is agreed that Alan Clark will be responsible for organizing and executing the sourcing process. The rest of the committee members will observe and participate during certain stages.

3. Sourcing Process Steps:

Executive director sourcing process will consist of the following steps:

  • Producing a job description
  • Sourcing a pool of resumes
  • Selecting the candidates for a phone screening
  • Committee recommendation
  • Board Review & Approval

4. Producing a job description:

In producing the description, committee members have researched job descriptions for comparable positions in other non-profit organizations with a mandate that is similar to the OpenStack foundation. Committee members have also considered the mission of the OpenStack foundation, as well as, discussions pertaining to executive director role that took place during earlier gold and platinum member meetings. Taking into the account all of above, executive committee members have collaboratively produced a job description by engaging in a series of open discussions conducted over the phone.

5. Sourcing Resumes:

It is agreed that Alan Clark will source the resumes by advertising the agreed upon job description in a number of places, such as LinkedIn.com, CareerBuilder.com and www.openstack.org/jobs. If the initial postings do not provide the calibar of candidates desired by the committee, Lloyd Wendt of Idetecht Solutions will be engaged to recruit for the position. Lloyd has reviewed the job description and has confirmed that he is willing to personally handle the assignment for a flat fee. The committee determined some sense of confidentiality and personal contact needs to be conveyed to the Candidates. We will therefore limit the initial exposure of the candidate information to the committee members. Candidates will submit their resumes to Alanclark@openstack.org Alan Clark is responsible for aggregating all resumes in a single place, accessible to all committee members. As the resume sourcing process continues, Alan will update all committee members on a regular basis (at least once a week) with respect to the status of the sourcing process i.e. places the position is being advertised, resume flow, any emerging issues/ considerations etc. Resume sourcing process will go on until committee members have come to an agreement that there are enough credible candidates available or until the executive director has been recruited by the board.

6. Selecting Candidates for Phone Interviews:

Initiation of the phone screenings does not imply that the process of sourcing the candidate resumes should stop. Sourcing and screening will proceed in parallel. Once some number of credible executive director candidates has been established, Alan Clark will initiate the process of identifying the candidates to be screened by phone. Executive committee members will convene via WebEx / phone conference to openly discuss the candidates and agree on those to be screened. More than one meeting may be necessary; follow-on email discussion may also be warranted. It is expected that committee members will unanimously agree on which resumes are worthy of the phone screening through this open discussion. If disagreements happen to arise, executive committee members will conduct a formal vote. The exact structure of the voting process may vary, depending on the final number and quality of the candidates being considered. Therefore, it will be agreed upon by the committee members when there is more clarity on this matter.

7. Conducting Phone Screenings Prior to conducting the screenings:

Alan Clark will put together a list of standard screening questions to be asked of the candidates. Alan will circulate the list of questions among all committee members and will give sufficient opportunity for comments and suggestions. If required, a phone discussion between committee may be organized by Alan to finalize the list of questions. Alan Clark will negotiate the screening times with the candidates and announce the time to all committee members. Committee member participation in the screenings is highly encouraged, but is optional. It is expected that the screenings will be conducted via WebEx or phone conference. The screening sessions will be recorded and made available by Alan Clark for all committee members to review offline. During the screening sessions, it is expected that Alan Clark will lead the interview with the agreed upon script of questions while all other participating committee members will listen on mute. Candidates will be explicitly notified about being recorded for offline review purposes. Upon Alan completing the scripted questions part of the interview, the screening will be open to all committee members for a period of 15-20 minutes.

8. Committee Recommendation

Upon completion of the phone interviews, Alan Clark will request of all committee members to provide their opinion (in private via email) regarding the best candidates and a runner up candidate. Having received and aggregated the information, Alan will publicly share the aggregated results of the opinions of committee members without openly revealing the details of individual votes and comments. The committee will convene in person at OSCON to openly discuss the aggregate results. It is assumed that the agreement regarding the top candidate will be easy to achieve. However, should any disagreements arise, a formal voting process will be put in place by the executive committee and executed upon at the said meeting. Those, unwilling to go public about their initial recommendation have the right to abstain from voting. As a result of the meeting at OSCON ED sourcing committee produce a recommendation for the top candidate. The recommendation will be drafted by Alan and ratified by ED sourcing committee members.

9. Board Review and Approval

All materials produced as the results of the steps described above, including the job description, candidate resumes, recordings of the candidate interviews and ED Sourcing recommendation will be packaged and passed on to the board members (once the board is formed). The board will then scrutinize the materials and will make the final decision on candidate hire. As always, it is expected that the board will be able to easily come to a unanimous decision. However, should disagreements arise among board members, a formal voting process will be instituted by the board.