Monday, December 03, 2018

November 2018 board meeting summary

On November 12th and 13th, ten of the thirteen PSF board members convened in Chicago, IL. Those who could not make it to the in-person meeting, joined via phone conferencing when possible.

In attendance were Naomi Ceder, Jacqueline Kazil, Thomas Wouters, Van Lindberg, Ewa Jodlowska, Lorena Mesa, Eric Holscher, Anna Ossowski, Christopher Neugebauer, and Jeff Triplett. Kushal Das and Marlene Mhangami connected remotely.

In continued efforts to be transparent with our community, we wanted to share what we discussed and what actions will be taken next.


The first discussion we had pertained to directors' involvement in fundraising.

What is being addressed?

It is common for non-profit board members to help raise resources via their various networks. In the past, our board hasn’t been very active in this area, and we’d like to change that going forward.

What are the next steps?

During the meeting, we created two board committees to get directors more involved in the fundraising process:
  • Fundraising committee: This committee will be focused on incoming sponsorships and donations. Even though this is a responsibility all directors will work on, this committee will help move things forward and provide the resources that other directors need to help with this role.
  • Outreach committee: This committee will decide if/how PSF funds will be used to help promote the PSF globally (this would be in addition to funds given via a grant/sponsorship). This group will also assist with creating resources for directors to use when attending an event to represent the PSF.

Code of Conduct

Since the Code of Conduct’s creation in 2013, the PSF has not updated nor worked on any related resources for our community to use outside of PyCon.

To better support our community, in the third quarter of 2017, the PSF created the Code of Conduct Work Group ( The purpose of this work group is to:
  1. Review, revise, and advise on policies relating to the PSF code of conducts and other communities that the PSF supports. This includes any #python chat community & email list under PSF jurisdiction.
  2. Create a standard set of Codes of Conduct and supporting documents for multiple channels of interaction such as, but not limited to, conferences, mailing lists, slack/IRC, code repositories, and more.
  3. Develop training materials and other processes to support Python community organizers in implementing and enforcing the Code of Conduct.

What is being addressed?

At our November meeting, the board discussed certain risk exposure that was brought to our attention. This discussion is still ongoing and as soon as there is a resolution for moving forward, we will work together with the Code of Conduct Work Group to update the community.

Python in Education

What is being addressed?

At PyCon 2018, one of the directors hosted an open space about Python in Education. The goal was to hear from attendees how the PSF can help educators with any obstacles they face with introducing Python into their curriculums. Lot of data points were collected and needed to be discussed.

What are the next steps?

The board directors created a Python in Education group. This group will facilitate ways the PSF can use its resources to improve the way we support educators with introducing Python into their curriculums.

The first goal will be to curate impactful and proven open source material that educators can use globally. The group will write up a request for proposal, decide on a budget that will be allocated to accepted proposals, and market it to our community. Our intended timeline is to launch the RFP by the new year and have the deadline be before PyCon. At PyCon, we will announce accepted proposals so the work can be done during the third quarter of 2019.

Finance Committee

As the PSF continues to grow, we have to make sure that operationally we are efficient and effective, especially when it comes to our finances.

What is being addressed?

For every non-profit board, a major responsibility is to ensure that there is a group to monitor the organization’s overall financial health. Prior to now, the PSF has not had a board finance committee.

What are the next steps?

During the meeting, we created a committee that the Director of Operations and Finance Controller will report to. To start, the group will meet quarterly. Their goals will be to:
  • Oversee financial planning (PSF & PyCon budgets)
  • Monitor that adequate funds are available for financial management tasks
  • Ensure that assets are protected
  • Draft organizational fiscal policies 
  • Anticipate financial problems from external fiscal environments
  • Oversee financial record keeping
  • Relay financial health to the rest of the board
  • Ensure all legal reporting requirements are met
  • Sustain the financial committee itself by training and recruiting subsequent board members

PyCon Trademark

What is being addressed?

At our meeting in May 2018, the board directors decided that the PSF needs to improve the way we monitor the PyCon trademark. The main reason behind this decision is to protect the mark by being able to prove that we are monitoring its use, which will help avoid certain legal challenges. Additionally, it will help us ensure that all PyCons are up to community standards: Python focused, non-commercial, and have actionable code of conducts.

The process has not yet been fully implemented.

What are the next steps?

The board directors will revive the discussion with the PSF’s trademark committee. The goal is to find common ground on how the process will work. Afterwards, we will work on full transparency with the community via blogs and a message on

Diversity Tracking

Even though this topic was not on our initial agenda, we wanted to talk about this if time allowed. We got lucky and were able to sneak it in!

What is being addressed?

Our grants program currently does not require any tracking or reporting for diversity grants. Nor does the PSF have a policy for expectations of diversity grants. Since we want to see that the funding we give towards diversity is impactful, we wanted to discuss options for what we can do.

What are the next steps?

We will work on a policy for diversity grants that ask organizers to collect relevant diversity statistics. In addition to that, the PSF will work on a template survey so conferences can have a starting point in order to lessen the burden on volunteer organizers. Once a template and policy is in place, we will market the resource via relevant mailing lists, communication chats, and the Grants Program page.

Python Governance and Core Development

Python has recently seen the resignation of its BDFL, Guido van Rossum. This encouraged the core developers to rethink the governance of Python. Several governance proposals were created in the forms of PEPs, which the core developers will be voting December 1st, 2018 to December 16th, 2018 (Anywhere on Earth).

Even though the board is not currently involved with core development, we did discuss what has been developing with the governance discussions. We reflected on some of the discussions happening on We discussed the various PEPs such as PEP 8001, which is about the Python Governance Voting Process. We also discussed what the directors thought about the proposals for Python governance such as PEP 8010, 8011, 8012, 8013, 8014, 8015, 8016.

What’s next?

Working across the table from one another was motivational and acted as a catalyst for several initiatives. It gave us the opportunity to have in-depth conversations, establish stronger professional relationships, and create actionable tasks to help move initiatives forward beyond the two-day meeting.

We plan to host more 24-hour chat channels throughout 2019. They give us the chance to hear from community members world wide. Additionally, we will have our next in-person board meeting at PyCon 2019 on May 2nd. We look forward to updating you all on our progress then.

It is important for us to know that the PSF Board is inline with our community’s needs. If you have comments or suggestions on what was recently discussed or something completely new, please reach out to me: ewa at python dot org.