Why I Joined the LPI Board of Directors – Jon “maddog” Hall

Why I Joined the LPI Board of Directors – Jon “maddog” Hall

Why am I active as a Board Director of the Linux Professional Institute?

It certainly is not the money that I am paid, as it is completely a voluntary position.

It is not the fame or stature that I receive, even having been the Board Chair since 2015, since I was already well know in the programming world and in the Open Source world long before I joined the Board of LPI.

It certainly was not because it was an “easy” job (it is often not easy) and most of the time it is not really as “fun” as solving an interesting programming problem or making a set of computers perform at their best.

It is not because I want to travel the world talking to company executive, leaders of countries, university professors and administrators….I had already visited over 100 countries (many more than one time, some dozens of times) in my career….and at the age of 73 coach seats, big airports and long immigration lines do not enthrall me.

Perhaps I am resigned that someone has to do the work that helps many people get better jobs, or even any job, but certainly jobs that I have found very rewarding over the years.

Perhaps it is my way of paying back all the people that helped me along the way over this past half-century.

Maybe, as a Board member, I can use my technical expertise, my business training and experience, my drive (sometimes modified a bit to make my personality more tolerable) to help to make Free and Open Source Software, Hardware and Culture (FOSSHC) a way that professionals can make a living and move society forward.

I did not learn this all at once. I learned it over the fore-mentioned fifty+ years of professional life.

Much of what I know I learned on my own and “certified” it though working in the professional sphere. However I also know that people can learn it much faster and much easier if they have a road-map, and LPI’s Certification and Certificate objectives go a long way to creating that road-map.

So the real reason I have been on the Board of Directors since 2015 (and helped create LPI in 1999) was to hear the words of people who say that FOSSHC has created a good living for them, and when they thank me for what I have done.

There is no greater feeling.

Unfortunately at the age of 73 with only 30% of my heart capacity left (after two massive heart attacks in 2016), and staring at another three-year term on the board (ending when I am 76) I feel it is time to turn the gavel to another person. Projects that I need to finish (and might cause a potential conflict of interest as a Board Chair or even a Board Director) call for less time with LPI and more time with those projects which will also be useful to FOSSHC. Therefore I now take on the role of LPI “Returning Officer”, required by the LPI Bylaws to not hold a future board seat, but to help find other good candidates for LPI Director.

To not let the reader know, at this point, that I am “retiring” from the Board of LPI in 2024 would be deceitful, and I like to think I am not a deceitful type of person.

Instead I offer the reader the chance to step up and utilize your skills, your knowledge, your love and your time for FOSSHC. Perhaps you are not a programmer or not a systems administrator. It has been three decades since I last programmed an operating system kernel, and two decades since I have been a systems administrator for more than my five or six systems at home. However, I know how to manage people, to balance a budget and more about business and IP law than I really want to know.

If you have skills like these, and a desire to learn and be responsible for an organization that has bettered the lives of more than 300,000 people in over 180 countries, than LPI wants you for its Board of Directors.

I want you for the Board.

I will not be leaving LPI completely. I will still help LPI any way that I can (and my body will allow), but we need more new and progressive Directors for the future of the organization.

Carpe Diem!

Warmest regards,

Jon “maddog” Hall, Board Chair and Returning Officer for 2024

Mark your calendars for the Linux Professional Institute Annual General Meeting, which will take place on Saturday, June 22, 2024, using an online platform. Members can vote at the meeting to choose the LPI Board of Directors.

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About Jon "maddog" Hall:

Jon "maddog" Hall is the Board Chair Emeritus of the Linux Professional Institute. Since 1969, Mr. Hall has been a programmer, systems designer, systems administrator, product manager, technical marketing manager, author and educator, currently working as an independent consultant. Mr. Hall has concentrated on Unix systems since 1980 and Linux systems since 1994, when he first met Linus Torvalds and correctly recognized the commercial importance of Linux and Free and open source Software. As the Executive Director of Linux International(TM), Mr. Hall has traveled the world speaking on the benefits of open source Software having received his BS in Commerce and Engineering from Drexel University, and his MSCS from RPI in Troy, New York.

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