Rachel Houghton, Candidate for STC Secretary

Candidate’s Statement

By Rachel Houghton, Candidate for STC Secretary

photo of Rachel Houghton
Rachel Houghton

The secretary is an officer of the Society and not a mere note-taker at board meetings. The secretary must be prepared to capture actions and significant information during deliberations, and should participate fully in the discussions. According to the Bylaws, Article IV, Section 3C, “The Secretary keeps minutes of all Society, Board of Directors, and executive committee meetings and distributes them in accordance with the Board of Director’s policies and procedures; and performs such other duties as the president or the board of directors may assign.”

I want to serve as Secretary so I can continue give back to the Society and to my profession at the highest possible level. I believe my skills and qualifications are the perfect match for the position: I am detail-oriented, highly organized, and aware of the challenges facing STC in the coming years. My STC job responsibilities have steadily increased over the years, and provided me with the ability to listen, the ability to take detailed notes, and the ability to process information from multiple sources and make it a cohesive whole, all while meeting strict deadlines.

I have been actively involved in the Society since late 1998. At the local level, I served on the Willamette Valley Chapter administrative council for 11 years, in a variety of leadership positions including chapter president, and chaired many meetings where we observed Robert’s Rules of Order. At the society level, I am currently the program chair for the 2010 STC Technical Communication Summit in Dallas, Texas, and a member of the Community Achievement Award Executive Committee. I was elected to the Nominating Committee in 2006, and I have written leadership articles for the Leadership Community Resource (LCR). I served as a judge for multiple international publications competitions, which I greatly enjoy. I received the distinguished chapter service award in the 1999–2000 program year, and earned the distinguished SIG service award in the 2006-2007 program year. I’ve also received an Outstanding Service Award from STC for my work on the program committee for the 2008 and 2009 STC conferences.

Outside of STC, I have volunteered my services as a newsletter editor and article contributor for multiple organizations. I graduated from Portland State University in 1996 with a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature and a minor in Professional Writing. I have been a technical writer since December 1996, working as a contractor, instructor, and senior technical writer.

I will be grateful for your vote for Secretary.

Candidate’s Statement: Nathaniel Lim, Candidate for Nominating Committee

Help Me Enhance the Technical Communication Profession

by Nathaniel Lim, Candidate for Nominating Committee

photo of Nathaniel Lim
Nathaniel Lim

When you tell your friends and family that you are a technical writer, what is their reaction? To me, they say that it sounds like an important job and probably isn’t easy. When I tell them I write online help as part of my job, they often tell me that Help does not help. Unfortunately, this is sad but true. People get frustrated when they read poorly written documents and cannot find the information they need.

This is why I am running for STC Nominating Committee. I want to make a difference. From here, I could tell you my interesting biography, awards I’ve received, impressive accomplishments, extensive work history, decision-making process, and reasons for running. But, that is all in my candidate statement on the STC website. Here is the stuff I could not include:

Reliable: I strongly believe in accountability and follow through. If I say I will do something, I make sure it gets done (or tell people early enough in the process if I cannot do it, so we can go to plan B). I also believe in following directions and meeting deadlines. At the same time, if I don’t understand the process or don’t believe that the rule applies, I will ask questions until I am satisfied that this is the best way to go about it.

Critical Thinker: When I was a lead judge for the STC international tech pubs competition, a new procedure came into effect that required writing at least 24 comments on the judging form. Thinking that this would be too numerous, I inquired to find that this was not a hard and fast rule. The spirit of the procedure was to ensure that submitters received sufficient written comments and not just numbered ratings. Thus, I wrote critiques to help the submitters, not always conforming to the rule.

Innovator: My company recently started translating documents into several foreign languages. My manager gave me the task of creating a new procedure for labeling them, putting them through the approval process, and posting them on our website for customers to download. Tracking and classifying over a hundred documents with different versions and languages could potentially fall into disarray. I was careful to think things through before taking action. I asked appropriate personnel for their input and drafted a formal procedure. Management approved. Although the procedure continues to get revised even to this day, I am proud that I was part of the first effort to formalize it.

You can also get to know me at LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/nathaniellim) and Facebook (search nathaniel lim impac).

Starting March 9, please take a minute to cast your vote for Nathaniel Lim. I would be grateful for your vote for Nominating Committee.

STC Board Election Candidates & Guidelines

The 2010 STC Board of Directors Election is scheduled to run from 9 March 2010 to 8 April 2010

Members must have renewed by 28 February 2010 in order to eligible to vote in the 2010 Election. Candidate materials and bios will be available on the STC website in early January 2010. As a reminder, student members are not eligible to vote in Society level elections, but are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the future leaders of the Society during the campaign.

The following information is from Jackie Damrau, Manager, Nominating Committee.

If you have questions, please contact Jackie atemail hidden; JavaScript is required.

Please note that the election slate presented below reflects changes to the composition of the Society Board of Directors. Based on the results of the Knowledge-based Governance Survey of the membership conducted in August 2009, the STC Board of Directors voted during its 24 August 2009 meeting to amend the Society Bylaws to reflect the following position changes:

  • Remove the Second Vice President position
  • Remove one Director position
  • Change Director terms to two years
  • Allow Directors to serve two consecutive terms

A full copy of the revised bylaws is posted on the STC website at: STC Bylaws.

Congratulations to all of the candidates, and thanks to everyone who expressed interest in running for office.

NOTE: All STC members must have paid their dues by 28 February 2010 to vote in the election!

For President:
Mike Hughes will automatically succeed from First Vice President.

For First Vice President:
Hillary Hart will automatically succeed from Second Vice President.

Candidates on the slate for the 2010 STC election:

For Secretary:
Rachel Houghton and Steven Jong

For Director (three positions to be elected)*:
Nicky Bleiel, Al Hood, Tricia Spayer, Makarand (Mak) Pandit, and W.C. Wiese

*Lisa Pappas resigned from the STC Board effective 23 November 2009, which creates an additional position for someone to serve the one year remaining in her term. For the 2010 election, STC members will elect three directors-at-large, with the top two winners serving the two-year terms and the third winner serving the remaining year of Lisa’s term.

For Nominating Committee (two positions to be elected):
Lory Hawkes, Nathaniel Lim, Linda Mikkelsen, and Preeti Mathur

The 2010 Society election is scheduled to begin 9 March and end 8 April 2010 at noon EDT (GMT-4).

Detailed information about the candidates will be posted as we receive them. The STC website will provide access for STC members to a question and answer area that you can use to ask questions of the candidates.

What STC provides for each candidate

STC Web Site. STC provides an area on the STC Web site at STC Board Election with the following information [to be updated soon for the 2010 elections]:

• Name of candidate
• Position for which the candidate is running
• Candidate’s personal Web site URL
• Statements of specific length (the answers provided by the candidate to specific questions on the candidate application form)

Each candidate will have an area to answer questions asked by the membership. The STC office will provide instructions on how to access the “Question and Answer” area to answer any questions. Candidates will receive an e-mail when someone sends a question to all candidates for a certain position. Candidates’ answers are posted on the site for all members to view.

STC e-Blasts. The STC office will send out up to two (2) campaign messages per candidate (by e mail on a first-come, first-serve basis to all STC members who have not opted-out of receiving Society e-mail.

Permitted campaign materials

Candidates are allowed to provide campaign information on their own personal Web sites and by contacting individuals personally. The candidate biography page on the STC Web site (at stc.org) will provide a link to the candidate’s personal Web site page.

What individual STC members can do

As community members, individual members may do the following:

Endorsements. As an individual member, you may endorse a particular candidate. The appropriate place to endorse a candidate is in the STC Ideas Ning site, the STC LinkedIn group, or STC Twitter. (NOTE: Group endorsement of a candidate by a community, chapter, or committee is not allowed. E-mail lists that are administered through the Society office and subscribed to based on an elected position in a community, such as the Presidents’ list or Treasurers’ list, are not appropriate venues for endorsements from individual members.)
Ask the candidates questions. The STC Web site (stc.org) will provide a “Question and Answer” area where individual members can post a question for all candidates for a position. All candidates for an elected position will receive the question by email and have the opportunity to post an answer.
Offer an opportunity to each candidate. If you would like to extend an opportunity to candidates to present their views, the opportunity must be submitted through the “Question and Answer” area to all candidates.