Brigham Statement for Candidacy in 2004
BackgroundAs a long-time activist, my communications and organizing experience could help CPSR turn expertise into influence.
That experience includes running the communications department of a school that educated activists in the 1970s; work as a writer and publicist; and writing and publishing the book "How to Do Leaflets, Newsletters and Papers" which sold 60,000 copies in 3 editions. For two decades I directed the United Auto Workers' (UAW) internal press organization, where I also ran communications conferences, wrote speeches, and edited a news service for unions across the U.S. and Canada. In 1995 I launched the UAW's award-winning web site and served as webmaster until my desire to master the technical skills I'd been hiring other people to do led me to go back to school.
Decades after graduating from Brown University, I earned an M.S. in Information at the University of Michigan. I now design web sites and databases, often using php and other open-source programs, and am on the web committee of the Association for Women in Computing. I designed and oversee the United Electrical Workers' international solidarity web site and have recently written for labor journals and the National Lawyers Guild about the use of Internet technology to organize internationally. I served on the committee that created the 6-story arch and pavilion honoring labor in downtown Detroit and serve on an ACLU communications committee.
I maintain decent fluency in both Spanish and French and have run workshops on machine translation in both the U.S. and Mexico, and teach workshops at annual LaborTech conferences.
I accepted the challenge to run for the Board because I value the collective technical and organizational expertise of CPSR and the commitment to use that know-how for social good. I want to see CPSR grow and thrive.
But to both attract and keep members, we need positive experiences working together and having an impact. I applaud the Board for recognizing the need to take bold steps to re-energize the organization. I think a revived newsletter and/or journal and conference are important steps.
Email debates are valuable, but in the absence of activity they can become divisive. I think we need to consolidate and organize email discussions, and the current plans for an interactive web site should move us in that direction. Although I was only active in the early discussion phase of the web project, I plan to become more involved.
While I support CPSR priorities, my personal priorities include keeping excessive copyright protection from choking off creative work, enthusiastic support for Open Source software, and broadening access. Also, CPSR's influence could be strengthened by working with groups like the ACLU, and educating non-profit groups about how they could be impacted. Mutual invitations to conferences might help build cooperation.
The conditions of work for computer professionals influence what we
can accomplish. Although this can' be CPSR's central focus, speaking
out for their rights can also help attract the mid-level computer
professionals who are needed if the organization is to grow.
Last modified April 14, 2005 08:34 PM