UK Wikimedian of the Year 2017
The UK Wikimedian of the Year is an annual award given by Wikimedia UK to thank those in the UK or abroad who have helped the UK Wikimedia movement. These volunteers and institutions have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help bring open knowledge to all.
The prizes were first awarded at WikiConference UK 2012 at the Science Museum on 12 May 2012. The purpose of the awards is to recognise achievement, and inspire efforts for next year!
UK Wikimedian of the Year
Jointly awarded for 2017
- Kelly Foster: Wikimedia relies on people to edit it, and its aims of enabling people to share knowledge in a neutral way means making sure that all sorts of different people are able to edit it. This makes trainers absolutely key as Wikimedians. As an excellent and effective trainer, Kelly Foster made an enormous contribution in training the members of our Wikipedia project, which is a huge part of why its members are now confident and frequent editors. This is just one of many training sessions she has run for groups and the quality and effectiveness of her contribution deserves this recognition.
- Ewan McAndrew: Ewan's work with Edinburgh University is hugely important for normalising the use of Wikipedia in an academic setting. Without being able to point out the great work he has done there i doubt i would have got Aberystwyth University to start taking Wikipedia seriously as a teaching tool. But the main reason for nominating Ewan is the Celtic Knot Conference. Ewan clearly worked incredibly hard on putting this event together, which by all accounts was a great success. From a Welsh perspective, a Wiki conference focused on smaller and minority languages was hugely valuable, as issues on smaller Wiki's can be very different to those on en Wiki.
Partnership of the Year
- National Library of Wales: Even if i do say so myself, i think the National Library of Wales deserves a nomination for their unparalleled commitment to Wikimedia UK and the wider Wikimedia movement. The NLW are now coming to the end of a 36 month full time residency. They have released 15,000 images to commons and have helped to create 33,000 wikidata items. They have held 20 Edit-a-thons, and users attending NLW events have created 10,000 new articles since January 2015. The library has been committed to supporting Wikimedia projects and has helped other Welsh content producers share their content on Wikimedia platforms, such as CADW (27,000 wikidata items) and Sain Records (7,000 sound clips). They have agreed to open their doors to Wiki visiting scholars, and have embedded Wiki based activities into their volunteer programme. They have partnered with the Welsh Government to run projects aimed at improving Welsh language content, and they have now appointed a permanent full time Wikimedian to their staff in order to maintain and develop their partnership with Wikimedia long term.
- User:Sic19: Simon Cobb (Sic19) has worked incredibly hard this year developing cultural Wikidata. As the Wikidata visiting scholar with National Library of Wales he has created over 10,000 Wikidata items and showcased the benefits of creating open linked data using visualisations, and by writing blogs. He ran a successful session at LODLAM 2017 aimed at developing collaborative Wikidata projects across the sector. In his role at the Leeds University Library he has also run several Wikipedia sessions and has been a strong advocate for Wikimedia within that institution.