Oversight Board/2017-2019-candidates

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There are to be four (4) Oversight Board slots to be elected for the 2017-2019 period, currently held by Walter, Adam, Lionel and Sameer.


Stage I August 15 Announcement of election date and first call for candidates.
Stage II August 30 Reminder of election date and second call for candidates.
Stage III September 15 Candidates' Wiki submissions deadline.
Stage IV October 1-15 Election.


Candidates should create a Wiki entry at Candidates' Wiki submissions, one entry per candidate, 1500 characters maximum length, sharing their vision and motivation.

Candidates should read and understand the terms of the Software Freedom Conservancy Fiscal Agreement, because such terms bind our behavior as Sugar Labs Oversight Board and all our internal policies and procedures as a Project and as an organization.

Among other terms, please note the Project Management, Communications and Activities terms in the agreement provide that:

2.1. The Oversight Board Will Manage the Project.

2.2. The Project Will Be Free Software.

6. Representation of the Project in Conservancy: The Representative will have the authority to instruct Conservancy on the Project’s behalf on all matters.

The terms contemplate that the Oversight Board elects a single individual to communicate with Conservancy (the “Representative”) and shall notify Conservancy promptly following the election of a new Representative.

By publishing your candidacy below, you imply that in case you are elected a Sugar Labs Oversight board member you will honor the agreement terms.

Devin Ulibarri

Devin Ulibarri is a musician and an educator who became interested in free/libre software in 2014 during research for the Center for Music-in-Education (Boston). Devin pursued research into the implications for "software libre in education" which led him to believe that free/libre software is best for teaching and learning. He was soon introduced to SugarLabs, which both empowers teachers/learners with software freedom as well as offers tools to exercise those freedoms in a community setting.

Since his introduction to the SugarLabs community, Devin has participated heavily in the development of Music Blocks, a programming language for music. Within the SugarLabs community, Devin offers conceptual recommendations, design ideas, mockups, testing, minor patches, and community involvement on GitHub and Sugar's IRC. In his local community, Devin has represented Music Blocks software as a workshop lecturer (Constructionism Conference in Thailand, Canopy of Somerville) as well as a class instructor (YMCA Malden).

As an oversight board member, Devin would bring his insight as an experienced classroom teacher, an artist, and a free/libre software advocate. Devin has been described as "a very patient person", which he hopes would be a contribution to the oversight board if elected.

Walter Bender

After a decade of working on Sugar, I am reflecting on how we engage learners. We provide programming environments (e.g., Turtle and Music Blocks) and mechanism for debugging, collaboration, expression, and reflection. Our adherence to the principles of Free/Libre Software provides scaffolding for personal expression through programming and for surfacing personal responsibility, a sense of community, and unbounded expectations of Sugar users turned Sugar developers.

Where have we fallen short? Edtech is become big business: selling Apps and content is more lucrative and facile than the hard work of engaging teacher and learners in authentic problem-solving. There is a strong temptation to make things as simple as possible so as to reach the broadest possible audience. But some things are inherently complex. Apps might be fun, but the hard part of “hard fun” is in reaching towards complexity.

We are going where the learners are: Sugar as a Web app, on Android, or on iOS, (Sugarizer) and, tracking the growth of the Maker Movement, we now support Sugar on Raspbian. “It is said that the best way to learn something is to teach it—and perhaps writing a teaching program is better still in its insistence on forcing one to consider all possible misunderstandings and mistakes.” — Seymour Papert

I have made mistakes, but as part of a learning community we will do better.

“Homework is boring. Looking for bugs is fun.” —Ezequiel Pereira

Let's continue to provide the basis for some fun.

Sebastian Silva (versión en Español)

The mission of the Sugar Labs Oversight Board is to ensure the community has clarity of purpose and the means to attain its goals.

Sugar Labs needs to recognize that our community is diverse. Therefore, there are diverse purposes that may be clear and at the same time opposed.

We should provide a safe and neutral space for dialogue on the technology and education that underlies our projects. We need to approve and enforce a code of conduct.

Finally, the reason for Sugar Labs to exist under the SFC is to facilitate the flow of resources to volunteers with valuable projects. We should strive to open and fund open calls with funds for development, infrastructure and end user products.

About Sebastian

Sebastian is father to two precious children that are being homeschooled in collaboration with his dear wife and co-creator Laura Vargas.

As a child, Sebastian learned to program with Logo and soon outgrew it to be charmed with Python and raise the flag of Free/Libre Software. He loves writing Sugar Activities; His latest is a collaborative Python IDE that he hopes you'll love too.

Currently he lives with his family in a cabin in the Amazon rainforest and teaches Karate and videogame programming to the kids in the vicinity, sustaining a lifestyle seeking harmony with nature and providing services of software artisanship and systems gardening remotely.

Lionel Laské

Learn more about my background here.

Like lot of you I've joined SugarLabs at the beginning of the OLPC project. As cofounder of OLPC France grassroot, I've worked hard to deploy it on the field and contribute to expand it both in term of activities and in term of French content. Because the OLPC project and the XO laptop was declining year after year, I've decided 5 years ago to launch the Sugarizer initiative. My objective was to write a new page of Sugar history by expanding its compatibility to any device, specifically the favorite education device of today: tablets. I'm very proud that today, two deployments already start to use Sugarizer on Android tablets.  

Deployed on more than 2 millions of devices and supported by millions of users, Sugar is the #1 learning platform in the world. But we need to convince this large community that a future exist out of the XO laptop. It's my ambition as candidate to the SugarLabs Oversight Board. As I've done in past month as SLOB member, I will support projects where the goal is to expand the community and give a vision to SugarLabs. Even if it could hurt sometime, I will also refuse to spend our limited resources on ways that not fit into its vision. We're all volunteers and our time is precious, let's continue to invest it where it will be the most useful: give to learners the better free libre education platform.

Sameer Verma

My background here.


I am a professor in the Information Systems department at San Francisco State University, in San Francisco, California USA. I also serve on the Board of Directors of the Drupal Association, which gives me significant insights into how large FOSS projects work both in the community and the enterprise. I am the founder of the OLPC San Francisco volunteer community, that continues to be active around OLPC's original mission and projects that have grown from that ecosystem, including Sugar, XS, XOVis and others.


My experience with Sugar projects are based on a three-pronged approach:

Understanding constructivist, constructionist, instructional and ad-hoc learning models. I look for accommodating for the gap between what may be prescribed, and what can actually be implemented in the field.
Hardware, software, and network combinations that make these projects work in the “middle of nowhere” communities. My professional training comes in handy when working on these technology bits.
Social Context
Understanding social context is the most important of the three approaches. Providing powerful life-changing educational tools to communities is not enough unless we also understand their cultural and social underpinnings.

Expected Contribution

To maintain Sugar's technology focus as a medium of delivery, while maintaining the education message. I hope to bring my skills and expertise to contribute to the strategic direction of Sugar the project, and its implementations on any device, anywhere.

Sean Daly

I am an independent journalist, formerly working for a large company in IT, communications, advertising and marketing. As my children are (mostly) grown, and I set my own work schedule, I will have time to commit to Sugar again. I have been part of Sugar Labs since 2009, including a term as a SLOB, and was Marketing Coordinator for 5 years.

The major changes in "educational technology" - from computer lab, to netbook, to tablet - mean that beyond the XO platform, Sugar must adapt and indeed is doing so, through Sugarizer and other initiatives. At the same time, the rapid growth of social media has created new opportunities to communicate about Sugar, opportunities which are not being seized today.

As a SLOB, I will work to grow our community and to raise awareness of Sugar.

Adam Holt

As its 10-year anniversary quickly approaches, Sugar Labs needs to do more than survive as a fragile vessel for One Laptop per Child's many still unmet dreams.

Sugar Labs can now begin standing up conscientiously in new areas, building on real-world deliverables like Sugarizer 0.9 on Internet-in-a-Box (a.k.a. the OLPC School Server Community Edition, http://schoolserver.org) now in use in a very rapidly growing number of countries where the XO laptop never quite took root:


Google Summer of Code (GSoC) and Google Code-in (GCI) are an amazingly powerful start to bring us together constructing collaboratively + openly + coherently -- but these are not the only revenue/volunteer streams Sugar Labs and the Sugar Movement can bank on during its second decade!

All such strategic progress is beginning to take shape for an entirely new generation of DIY Sugar culture. But it is thanks to an underlying non-chaotic legal and accounting strategy with the Software Freedom Conservancy that all this is possible.

I have worked for 10 years with Sugar Labs (originally as OLPC's Community Support Manager) and then as Sugar Labs' liaison/representative to the Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC) for 2 years now to solidify a foundation here.

Claudia Urrea

I have more 20 years of experience in the field of Education and Technology. I am currently working at the MIT Jameel World Education Lab (J-WEL) as the Associate Director PreK-12. I have helped multiple governments and non-government agencies to empower and support schools and communities of learners to evolve from traditional teaching methods into progressive learning environments.

I have a degree in Computer Science/Systems Engineering, a Master's degree in Educational Media and Technology from Boston University, and a doctorate degree from the MIT Media Laboratory. During my PhD thesis, I studied the implications of one to one learning in a rural setting in Latin America, which provided the knowledge and experience that I brought to the Interamerican Development Bank as a consultant in the Education Sector, and later, during 5 years I spent with One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) as Director of Learning. My interests include computational thinking and open-free software, personalized and digital learning and assessment, curriculum design, education for developing countries, teacher professional development, educational programming and robotics, maker education, quality learning at scale, among others. 

During the last year at OLPC, I joined the Sugar Labs board, which allowed to develop a number of programs, resources and events in collaboration with Walter Bender and other members of the community. My current position at MIT and my knowledge of both Sugar Labs and the international educational community would allow me to bring new opportunities for Sugar Labs. I have witness the powerful opportunities SugarLabs and the work of the community have brought to a great number of children and young adults from many countries in the world. I would like to work hard to try to bring those to many more. 


This election is being run by the Membership and Elections Committee which was appointed in January, along with Dave Crossland as an impartial election oversight party. Ignacio Rodríguez will be in charge of all the technical procedures with the assistance of Sugar Labs infrastructure team: systems AT list.sugarlabs.org

An update from the Membership and Elections Committee was received during the Oversight Board meeting of August 4. Also listed were the expiring slots.

During September's meeting the Board confirmed September 27, 2017 as the deadline for new memberships request to participate on 2017-2019 elections.