Govcom minutes 2019-11-28

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GovCom Minutes, 4-6pm 28th November 2019



Board: Josie Fraser (Chair), Sangeet Bhullar, Rosie Chapman. Staff: Lucy Crompton-Reid, Katie Crampton (minuting).



Declarations of interest relating to matters on the agenda

LCR noted that since the last meeting, Kat Bavage has confirmed that she will be able to join the Development Advisory board. It has been hard to agree a date for the first meeting and we’re now looking at dates in 2020.  Action: JF asked for details of Wikimedia UK committees and members to go online. LCR confirmed that the board and sub committee members are all up to date and that Katie will add the new advisory group once we’ve held the first meeting.

Kingston Smith offers trustee training for free for their clients, which Andrea Chandler attended and found useful. LCR will circulate the dates for training when these become available.

Minutes of last GovCom meeting

The minutes of the last meeting were approved.

Board and sub-committee membership

JF reminded the committee that we are looking to co-opt one or possibly two new trustees, and that we are prioritising legal skills and knowledge of communications. JF has interviewed several people and is hoping to be able to make recommendations at the December board meeting, depending on the availability of other potential candidates that she is trying to meet before then. JF is delegating the recruitment of non trustee members on ARC to Jane Carlin (as Chair of ARC).

No trustees volunteered to be on the bank mandate, so our treasurer Marnie Woodward has proposed increasing LCR’s authorisation limit from £10,000 to £15,000. This will need to be approved by the board. SB offered to be on the mandate, although there could be an issue with getting things signed as she is not based in London. We won’t need another trustee on the mandate if the board is happy to increase LCR’s limit, but LCR thanked SB for the offer and said it could be very helpful in future.

Chairs Group

A group of Wikimedia Chapter Chairs have sent a letter to the WMF saying that their concerns over the legal risks of rebranding to Wikipedia have not been given enough consideration. Action: JF to send link with comments on rebranding strategy. The Chairs group were not in favour of the rebranding because it may increase liability legally of Wikipedia as groups. Possibly to go on risk register if rebrand goes ahead. It speaks to the convoluted layers of the Wikimedia movement, as there are lots of organisations but the Foundation is the head. JF does not make decisions unilaterally so has left off commenting on the page, but we will need a discussion about rebranding with staff and board sometime in the next few months.

Location for 2020 AGM

As we generally alternate between London and outside London for AGM meetings, LCR proposed that the 2020 AGM should be held in London and this was agreed by the committee.

KC highlighted the importance of having an event team available to support an event, which isn’t always possible with a pro bono venue. Action: KC to explore possible venues.

Meetings in 2020/21

KC sent dates of the 2020 meetings, LCR wanted to double check with GovCom members whether the current time slot still suits. GovCom approved.

RC left at this point in the meeting.


Discussed the best dates for training, action: LCR and KC to decide to decide on date and send to everyone.

Date of next meeting

Thursday 27th February 2020.