TUG 2011 election: Results and candidates' statements

From Jim Hefferon for the TUG election committee:

Nominations for TUG President and the Board of Directors in 2011 have been received and validated. Because there is a single nomination for the office of President and because there are not more nominations for the Board of Directors than there are open seats, there will be no requirement for a ballot this election.

For President, Steve Peter was nominated. As there were no other nominees, he is duly elected and will serve for a two-year term.

For the Board of Directors, the following individuals were nominated: Barbara Beeton, Karl Berry, Susan DeMeritt, Michael Doob, Taco Hoekwater, Ross Moore, Cheryl Ponchin, Philip Taylor, and Boris Veytsman. As there were not more nominations than open positions, all the nominees are duly elected to a four-year term. Thanks to all for their willingness to serve.

Terms for President and Members of the Board of Directors will begin with the Annual Meeting at River Valley Technologies in India. Congratulations to all.

Jon Breitenbucher has decided to step down at the end of his term. On behalf of the Board, I wish to thank him for his service, and for his continued participation through October.

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

The following candidates' statements were received for the present election, and will be printed in the first regular issue of TUGboat for 2011.

  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 since 2003 and was a board member for two terms prior to that. I am now running for a position on the board, feeling that it was time to step down as president. However, I don't expect to materially change my efforts on behalf of TUG and TeX.

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

On the TeX 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 maintain Web2c (Unix TeX) and its basic library Kpathsea, Eplain (a macro package extending plain TeX), GNU Texinfo, and many other projects. I was also a co-author of TeX for the Impatient, an early comprehensive book on TeX, which is 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 enough to be able to work essentially full time, pro bono, on TUG and TeX activities the past several years, and plan to continue doing so if re-elected as a board member.

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.

  Taco Hoekwater

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

TeX biography: Taco Hoekwater (born in 1969 in Netherlands) is the main developer of LuaTeX, and MetaPost/MPlib. He has been the first user of ConTeXt outside of PRAGMA ADE and works in tight cooperation with Hans Hagen to develop TeX engines and macros for ConTeXt ever since. Around 2005 he took over development of MetaPost, originally written by John Hobby, to implement some features needed in ConTeXt and by Polish MetaType1 font developers. During the development of ConTeXt MkIV he turned it into a library called MPlib to improve efficiency and gain speed in ConTeXt which is known for heavy use of MetaPost graphics. He has been the president of the Dutch language-oriented TeX users group (NTG) since 2009 and main editor of the user group's magazine MAPS. He was the first and main organizer of ConTeXt User Meetings, the first one being hosted in Epen, Netherlands in 2007, followed by the joint EuroTeX & 3rd ConTeXt Meeting in The Hague in 2009.

Statement of intent: After three decades, there is still a lot of life in TeX. New developments like XeTeX, LuaTeX, TeX, TeXworks and also the continuously improving TeX Live help bring new life in the community. As a board member, I hope to be able to promote future extensions and applications of Knuth's amazing piece of software.

  Ross Moore

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

My name is Ross Moore; I am an academic mathematician, living in Sydney, Australia.

Since the mid-80s I have been a user of TeX and LaTeX, mostly for mathematical applications, such as journal articles, books and Proceedings volumes. The need for special content layouts has led to my involvement in the development of several packages and other software, most notably Xy-pic and LaTeX2HTML, both of which I have presented at TUG annual meetings.

My first TUG meeting in 1997 saw me joining the TUG Board of Directors where I have served ever since, and wish to continue to serve for at least another term. For TUG I've worked on the Technical Council, the Publications Committee, assisted with organising annual meetings, been the contact person for the technical working groups TFAA and MacTeX (though the important work is done by others), and administer email discussion groups (LaTeX2HTML, Xy-pic, XeTeX). Frequently I answer queries and give advice on the TeX on Mac OS X mailing list, for Macintosh users of TeX.

Currently I am working to develop TeX support for “Tagged PDF” and “Universal Accessibility” and archivability, through the PDF/A and PDF/UA formats. This is especially intricate for mathematics, which requires embedding a MathML description of the content inside the PDF document, as well as including the words for a spoken version that can be read for the benefit of the visually impaired. If TeX is to remain relevant as a publishing tool, in the context of the rapidly advancing world of communication technologies, then these technologies must be embraced and proper support developed.

For the TUG board, I feel that my experience as both a TeX programmer, as well as a mathematical author and editor, provides a detailed understanding of how TeX and LaTeX have been used in the past, as well as insight into new ways that the TeX family of programs may be used in coming years.

  Steve Peter

(Candidate for TUG president.)

Biography: I am a linguist and publisher originally from Illinois, but now living in New Jersey. I first encountered TeX as a technical writer documenting Mathematica. Now I use TeX and friends for a majority of my publishing work, and work with several publishers customizing TeX-based publishing systems. I am especially interested in multilingual typography and finding a sane way to typeset all of those crazy symbolisms linguists create. As if that weren't bad enough, I also design typefaces. (Do I know lucrative markets, or what?)

I got involved in TUG via translations for TUGboat, where I also work on the production team. I've been on the board of directors for the past half-dozen years, and I pledge to do my best to build on the excellent work of Karl Berry as TUG president.

Statement: The future of TeX and TUG lies in communication and working together to promote and sustain the amazing typographic quality associated with TeX and friends. I am especially interested in having TUG support various projects (technical and artistic) that will serve to bolster TeX and TUG's visibility in the world at large.

  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.

  Philip Taylor

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

Philip Taylor took early retirement from his post as Webmaster of one of the larger University of London colleges just over three years ago, and has since then devoted much of his time to gardening, cycling, and table-tennis. Although he retains his former professional interest in web technology, and continues to maintain and develop a number of web sites, his real passion always was, and remains, computer typesetting, for which he continues to believe that there is no better system than TeX and its offspring: e-TeX, PdfTeX, XeTeX, and LuaTeX. Having served as a member of the TUG Board of Directors for several years, he had intended to stand down at the end of his current term of office, but the recent announcement by Karl Berry that he (Karl) now intends to stand down as President has caused him (Phil) to re-consider, as he believes that the Board could be weakened if too many members were to leave at the same time.

If re-elected, Phil will continue to do his best to ensure that the needs and wishes of the ordinary TUG member are paramount when Board-level decisions need to be made.

  Boris Veytsman

(Candidate for TUG board of directors.)

TeX biography: I have been using TeX since 1994 and have been a TeX consultant for about six years.

Statement of intent: My goal is to make TUG a little bit more useful for the members. I think that besides our traditional benefits (TUGboat, software DVDs) we can do more. For example, we can convince vendors to provide exclusive discounts for our members on books, software and other products. I have done some work along these lines, and would like to continue it.