Ruby Australia Annual General Meeting (AGM) Minutes - October 2020

12th October 2020
7:00pm AEDT / 6:30pm ACDT / 4:00pm AWST


  • Pat Allan
  • Ryan Bigg
  • Kieran Andrews
  • Mark Glossop
  • Mathew Button
  • Aaron Moodie
  • Katie McLaughlin
  • Lauren Hennessy
  • Toby Nieboer
  • Vanessa Nimmo
  • Nick Wolf
  • Anton Katunin
  • Mike Rogers
  • Celia Colquhoun King
  • Lee Sheppard
  • Kirsten Comandich


  • Rachael Goodenough


Meeting began at 7:15pm AEDT

Introduction (Pat Allan)

  • Welcome
  • Acknowledgement of Country
  • Introduction of Ruby Australia, and of Pat as host and outgoing President
  • Outlining the approach for online meetings - using raised hand feature to ask a question.
  • Introducing the rest of the committee.

Ratify Previous GM Minutes (Pat Allan)

  • From April 27, 2020.
  • Use the Yes/No feature to vote.
  • Motion passes without dissent.

President's Report (Pat Allan)

  • Last six months have been tough for everyone - exhausting and challenging.
  • Hope you’re all getting the support you need to get through the pandemic and related chaos.
  • Within Ruby AU it’s been pretty quiet - just focused on keeping the lights on. We’ve had contact with sponsors to let them know what’s going on, and supported the local meetups.
  • Though I wish we’d had the energy to do more, I’m glad we’ve kept things going.
  • Two years as President has been an honour and a privilege. I’m not running for another term - I’ve had my time in the limelight and then some, and I’d love to see someone else have that opportunity.
  • Thank you to not only the current committee, but those on the committee over the past two years and more. You are excellent colleagues and amazing humans.
  • No questions for Pat.

Treasurer's Report (Ryan Bigg)

  • Normally this is the part where we’d say the accounts have done such and such, but in the last six months they haven’t done much at all. So I’ll report on the last financial year.
  • Total cost of sales $147,000, which went to running RubyConf AU 2020. We’ve received $108,000 in sponsorship as well. We’re running at a net profit of $49,311. Actual cash in the bank is $63,000.
  • Where that’s going is subsidising the next conference, sponsoring events, providing Zoom account hosting, things like that.
  • Other than that, not much to report. The treasurer’s job has been an easy one over the past six months.

Sponsorship (Aaron Moodie)

  • Sponsorship normally runs during the financial year. This year, looking at what was happening, we made the call to extend that to the end of the calendar year. That’s still ongoing at this time.
  • There’s been no decision on what or when the next conference will take place.
  • We’re getting to the point where we need to figure out what happens next - I have been in touch with the sponsors and let them know the decisions that have been made around extending the sponsorship period, so they’re aware of what’s going on.
  • We’ve had some companies reach out about sponsorship, but until we figure out what 2021 looks like and put a prospectus together, we’re holding off on that.

RailsCamp Adelaide (Kieran Andrews)

  • We had a camp planned for May 2020 which had to be postponed.
  • The venue has been really kind about letting us reuse the deposit for a future event.
  • We are monitoring the situation and are waiting for a time when it’s safe and practical for us to attend - there are things around borders opening, number of attendees etc.
  • It’ll be great to see you all in person again one day in the future - keep an eye on Twitter and Slack.

RubyConf AU (Pat Allan)

  • The committee had some discussion around what the 2021 conference might look like, and we realised planning could not realistically go ahead. We had to conclude that there will not be a RubyConf AU 2021. I’m pretty heartbroken about that :cry:
  • We’re hoping some version of the conference will go ahead in 2022 - if you’d like to be involved in organising that, please reach out.
  • Katie McLaughlin: Are there plans to ensure the RubyConf AU website shows the 2021 edition is not running?
  • Pat: Excellent point, I’ll ensure that happens.

Rails Girls (Lee Sheppard)

  • Not much to share at the moment. There’s the chance we might be able to do something, but it’s going to be a while before we can really get together and do it as normal.

Meetups (Mark Glossop/Mat Button/Kieran Andrews/Celia Colquhoun King/Nick Wolf)

  • Mark: Perth is happening virtually, still very small in numbers. I’ve been enjoying attending Melbourne’s virtual meetup.
  • Mat: Sydney is getting 20 or so people virtually. It’s just a relief they’re happening.
  • Celia: Melbourne has been going along, we’ve had some lovely talks. Looking for one for October’s meetup!
  • Kieran: Adelaide is not currently happening.
  • Nick: We have two remote meetups of sorts, a book club (we’re currently on Refactoring, by Martin Fowler) and a remote meditation group. They’re both on the Ruby AU Slack.

Elections (Pat Allan)

  • Most roles are twelve month terms.
  • Some elections happen at the SGMs (April/May), some at the AGMs (Oct/Nov) to ensure there’s overlap in terms.
  • Three roles up for election: Vice President and two General Members. All one year terms.
  • Votes only required if more than one candidate per position.
  • No nominations ahead of time for any role.

President (Kieran Andrews)

  • The role guides the overall direction of the organization. They make the final call on major decisions and delegate work to general members. They are in charge of making sure the committee is running smoothly, including chairing committee meetings and helping other committee members to meet their obligations. One year term.
  • Toby Nieboer nominates Nick Wolf, seconded by Lauren Hennessy, and Nick accepts.
  • Nick Wolf is elected unopposed, congratulations.
  • Mark Glossop: Did I see that there was a nomination submitted online?
  • Pat: No, there were no nominations received.

Secretary (Kieran Andrews)

  • Role is responsible for maintaining the formal legal and governance requirements of running an association. They help schedule both committee and general meetings, maintain minutes all meetings and assist with member communications. One year term.
  • No nominations forthcoming.
  • Toby Nieboer: What happens if there are no nominations for a role?
  • Pat: For most roles it’s okay, but for secretary it’s a role that must be filled.
  • Toby: We’ve clarified previously that the secretary does not need to be a Victorian resident, right?
  • Pat: Correct, as long as we have access to the PO box.
  • Lauren Hennessy: The committee can appoint willing people to positions outside the general meeting.
  • Pat: The constitution says that secretary must be filled within 14 days of the vacancy arising, and that the committee can fill the role outside the general meeting. So we don’t need to find it now, but the committee will need to find someone within 14 days.

General Members x2 (Kieran Andrews)

  • General members are tasked with supporting the current needs of the organization in various ways. They might be focused on particular aspects of the organization like the website sponsorship, social media and other member communication. We try to utilize the strengths and interests of each member to the best effect and to allow them a fair amount of autonomy in their area of focus. One year terms.
  • Toby Nieboer nominates Anton Katunin, but Anton declines.
  • Pat Allan nominates Lee Sheppard to run again, Toby Nieboer seconds, and Lee accepts.
  • No other nominations. Lee Sheppard is elected unopposed, and one general member role is vacant.

Outgoing Committee (Pat Allan)

  • Thank you to Rachael and Aaron who are stepping down, and to the ongoing committee.

General Business (Pat Allan)

  • No general business raised.
  • Nick Wolf: A tremendous thank you to Pat for all your work over the past two years and everything you have done to support and help the Ruby community.
  • Mark Glossop: In the past I’ve whimsically suggested a position of Immediate Past President for Pat.
  • Pat: Is there responsibility attached?
  • Mat Button: We could get you a nice hat.

Meeting devolves into hat puns and is adjourned.