TUG 2015 election: Results and candidates' statements

Kaveh Bazargan has been elected president for the term that ends with the 2017 annual meeting.

The following votes were counted:
   Kaveh Bazargan, 307
   Jim Hefferon, 110
Both candidates made a good showing, although the total number of voters was only about a third of those eligible.

As of the ballot closing date (May 11), 145 paper votes and 291 valid electronic ballots were received. Of the 291 electronic votes, 18 were repeats of the same vote. One member voted (differently) by paper after voting electronically, so the electronic vote was excluded from the result.

The electronic votes were processed by a shell script. Handling the paper votes and matching these up with electronic votes was time-consuming and expensive. We suggest that the electronic voting may be strongly encouraged in the future, while paper ballots could be sent by request. We will make specific recommendations to the election procedures in due course.

As previously announced, the number of candidates for open board positions was fewer than positions, so these board candidates were declared duly elected for a term ending with the 2019 annual meeting: Pavneet Arora, Barbara Beeton, Karl Berry, Susan DeMeritt, Michael Doob, Cheryl Ponchin, Norbert Preining, and Boris Veytsman. Continuing board members with terms ending in 2017, are: Kaja Christiansen, Steve Grathwohl, Jim Hefferon, Klaus Höppner, Arthur Reutenauer, David Walden.

Taco Hoekwater, Ross Moore, Steve Peter, and Philip Taylor have decided to step down at the end of this term. On behalf of the Board, I wish to thank them for their service, and for their continued participation until the Annual Meeting.

This was the first contested election since 2005. Thanks to everyone for their participation.

Kaja Podlaska Christiansen for the Elections Committee

Announcements and information about previous elections are available, along with the notice for this election, and the roster of current and past board members: 2013, 2011, 2009, 2007, 2005, 2003, 2001, 1999, 1997.

The following candidates' statements were received for the present election, and were printed in TUGboat 36:1.

Candidates for TUG President

(Order of the two candidates for president was determined by lot.)

  Kaveh Bazargan

(Candidate for TUG President.)

About me

I fell in love with TeX in 1983, after discovering Don Knuth's “TeX and MetaFont”. I was the first TeX user in Imperial College, London, and the first to submit a PhD written in TeX. In 1988 I set up Focal Image Ltd (now River Valley Technologies) to deliver TeX typesetting to publishers. 25 years on, we are one of few typesetters paginating exclusively with TeX. I feel I am well connected in the publishing industry and want to use that influence to promote TUG.

How I have supported TUG

My plans for the future of TUG

Were I to be honored with the TUG presidency, here are some suggestions for building on TUG's outstanding reputation:

Increase institutional memberships and revenue

Educate the publishing industry

Attract younger members

Increase TUG meeting attendance

  Jim Hefferon

(Candidate for TUG President.)

Statement: TeX and friends are widely used today, part of the infrastructure of mathematics and science around the world. But we have challenges. Things change so quickly in this area and we must be sure to keep our tools sharp, so that they still do the job that users need the tools to do.

TUG must continue to try to understand the needs of our members and of the entire community, and to see how we can help with those needs. We must promote the TeX suite in wider areas and to a new generation of users. And, crucially, we must take what steps we can to address the decline in our organization's membership.

As in the past, key is coordinating with our partners in other user groups around the world, continuing to hold conferences and to publish TUGboat, continuing to sponsor development including that of TeX Live, and continuing to help fund new projects where feasible. But we must in addition try to find new ways to make TeX and friends more visible, and to make TUG membership as attractive as possible.

Personal: I am a mathematics professor at Saint Michael's College in the US. I first extensively used TeX in the early 90s when I wrote a freely-available textbook. Some people may know me from my time working on CTAN. I am also a long-time TUG Board member and am now Vice President.

Candidates for TUG Board of Directors

  Pavneet Arora

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

I design and engineer control and automation systems for residential and commercial projects such as lighting, audio/video, HVAC, security.

One great shortcoming in such projects is the lack of adequate documentation—caused in no small part because few systematic methods exist with which to capture either the design or the implementation specific information. As such, my current research interests involve the specification driven documentation of signals using the TeX family of tools. I firmly believe that TeX toolsets distinguish themselves not only for the beauty of the output they produce, but also by the ease with which they integrate into modern documentation workflows as well as their ability to handle the demands placed upon them.

I am also passionate about mathematical literacy in young children, especially in cases where these students are shunted out of the mainstay curriculum, and continue to explore the development of dynamically generated math worksheets using TeX to aid in their learning.

  Barbara Beeton

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)


Once again I've decided it's not quite yet time to retire. TeX continues to provide interesting problems to work on, and TUG still provides a focus for dedicated TeX users.

I believe there's still a place in the TUG ranks for one of the “old guard”, to provide institutional memory when it's appropriate, and cheer on the younger folks who are trying new things.

With support from the members of this wonderful community, I'd like to continue for four more years.

  Karl Berry

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

TeX biography: I served as TUG president from 2003–2011 and was a board member for two terms prior to that, and one term subsequently. I am running again for a position on the board.

I have been on the TUG technical council for many years, and co-sponsored the creation of the TeX Development Fund in 2002. I'm one of the primary system administrators and webmasters for the TUG servers, and the production manager for our journal TUGboat.

On the development side, I'm currently editor of TeX Live, the largest free software TeX distribution, and thus coordinate with many other TeX projects around the world, such as CTAN, LaTeX, and pdfTeX. I developed and still (co-)maintain Web2c (Unix TeX) and its basic library Kpathsea, Eplain (a macro package extending plain TeX), GNU Texinfo, and other projects. I am also a co-author of TeX for the Impatient, an early comprehensive book on plain TeX, now freely available. I first encountered and installed TeX in 1982, as a college undergraduate.

Statement of intent: I believe TUG can best serve its members and the general TeX community by working in partnership with the other TeX user groups worldwide, and sponsoring projects and conferences that will increase interest in and use of TeX. I've been fortunate to be able to work on TUG and TeX activities the past several years, and plan to continue doing so if re-elected.

  Susan Demeritt

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

My name is Susan DeMeritt, I live in Lakeside, California, a suburb of San Diego.

I am employed by the Center for Communications Research, La Jolla, in San Diego, California for almost 22 years now as the only employee in the Publications Department; I perform the technical typing duties required as well as serving as a resource for other employees with questions regarding the usage of LaTeX. I started the position learning TeX and am now working with LaTeX2e. I continue to enjoy using LaTeX2e to typeset mathematical and scientific papers; there is always something new to learn and always another challenge to figure out.

I have been a member of the TeX Users Group since 1989. I have been a member of the Board of Directors since March of 1998, and Secretary since 2001. I really enjoy being part of the Board of Directors of the TeX Users Group.

  Michael Doob

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

I have been using TeX for more than a quarter-century. In 1984 I wrote one of the first books in pure mathematics to be printed using TeX and camera-ready copy. In those pre-laser printer days, the output used a dot-matrix printer (at a glorious 240dpi using my home-written device driver). It was entitled Recent Results in the Theory of Graph Spectra, and the book, the printer, and the device driver have all happily disappeared in the mists of bygone days.

TeX, on the other hand, has had an amazing evolution. It has not only developed as an elegant piece of software, but its syntax has become a lingua franca for many scientific fields. The basic engine has driven many applications that have revolutionized mathematical publishing among other areas. Watching these changes has been exciting and exhilarating. These applications continue to evolve and set new standards in many unexpected ways. For example, beamer has become the standard for many types of mathematical presentations.

The TeX Users Group has done a wonderful job of supporting the variations on the theme of TeX: there are useful annual meetings with interesting presentations, there are the publications TUGboat and PracTeX which appeal to both novice and expert, and there is support on the web using CTAN in general and TeX Live in particular. These efforts are spearheaded by the Board of Directors. I believe I can bring to this Board a background that will facilitate its efforts. I have experience as a mathematician, as the founder of the TeX publishing office for the Canadian Mathematical Society, and as a former Board member. I would appreciate the support of you, the members, and, if elected, will give my best efforts to encourage the wider and more varied uses of TeX.

  Cheryl Ponchin

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

My name is Cheryl Ponchin, I am employed at the Center for Communications Research in Princeton. I have been typesetting mathematical papers using (La)TeX since 1987.

I have been a member of the TeX Users Group since 1989 and a member of the TUG Board since March of 1998. I have done many workshops for TUG as well as at several universities. I really enjoy being part of TUG.

  Norbert Preining

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Biography: I am a mathematician and computer scientist living and working wherever I find a job at a university. After my studies at the Vienna University of Technology, I moved to Tuscany area of Italy for a Marie Curie Fellowship. After another intermezzo in Vienna I have (temporarily?) settled in Japan since 2009, currently working at the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, working on intermediate logics and algebraic specification languages.

After years of being a simple user of (La)TeX, I first started contributing to TeX Live by compiling some binaries in 2001. In 2005, I started working on packaging TeX Live for Debian, which has developed into the standard TeX package for Debian and its derivatives. During EuroBachoTeX 2007, I got (by chance) involved in the development of TeX Live itself, which is now the core of my contribution to the TeX world. Up till now I am continuing with both these efforts.

Furthermore, with my move to Japan I got interested in its typographic tradition and support in TeX. I am working with the local TeX users to improve overall Japanese support in TeX (Live). In this way we managed to bring the TUG 2013 conference for the first time to Japan.

More details concerning my involvement in TeX, and lots of anecdotes, can be found at the TUG interview corner or on my web site.

Statement: After many years in the active development, I want to take up more responsibility by becoming a board member of TUG. In my eyes, TUG is the most influential user group, and its involvement in the development, promotion, and support of the whole TeX micro-cosmos is of essential importance for the future survival.

The challenges I see for TUG in the next years are the increase of members and funds, and technical improvement of our software. Promoting TeX as a (self-)publishing tool also outside the usual math/CS environment will increase the acceptance of TeX, and by this will hopefully bring more members to TUG.

  Boris Veytsman

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

TeX biography: I was born in 1964 in Ukraine and have a degree in Theoretical Physics. I worked for various scientific and high-tech employers in Ukraine and US: universities, research companies, government contractors, etc. I participated in many different projects: from the design of industrial vacuum cleaners to the research in the thermodynamics of complex systems to the development of Internet in space to the design and implementation of air traffic surveillance system to medico-biological research—as well as teaching and writing. My CV is available at http://borisv.lk.net/cv/cv.html.

I have been using TeX since 1994 and have been a TeX consultant since 2005. I published a number of packages on CTAN and papers in TUGboat & Prac. TeX J.

Statement of intent: As a TUG Board member I am interested in making TUG more useful for the members and attracting new members. We need this to ensure the long term relevance of our group for the community.

I arranged some discounts for TUG members from publishers and other vendors. I convinced Google to join TUG as an institutional member. Recently I helped to organize a membership drive for TUG.

If the TUG community allows me to serve this next term, I am going to continue this activity.

$Date: 2016/07/31 21:28:04 $;
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