Ruby Australia Special General Meeting (SGM) Minutes - May 2023

Ruby Australia - Minutes of 2023 Special General Meeting

Location: Online (via Zoom)

Time: 22 May 2023, 1900 AEST/1830 ACST/1700 AWST

Committee Members:
Nick Wolf - President
Sharon Vaughan - Vice President
Mat Button - Treasurer
Michael Rixon - Secretary
Lee Sheppard - General Member
Mark Glossop - General Member
Kirsten Comandich - General Member


  • Pat Allan [PA] - SGM host
  • Kieran Andrews [KA]
  • Mathew Button [MB]
  • Kirsten Comandich [KC]
  • Claire Fernandes [CF]
  • Kevin Garcia-Fernandez [KGF]
  • Mark Glossop [MG]
  • Ben Greig [BG]
  • Geoff Hodgson [GH]
  • Anton Katunin [AK]
  • Daniel Nguyen [DN]
  • Simran Sawhney [SS]
  • Lee Sheppard [LS]
  • John Sherwood [JS]
  • Tom Tuddenham [TT]
  • Nick Wolf [NW]

Apologies (Ruby AU committee members):

  • Sharon Vaughan [SV] - Vice-President
  • Michael Rixon [MR] - Secretary
  • Tarun Mookhey [TM] - General Member


  • Meeting commenced: 1905 AEST
  • [PA] Welcome and Thanks
  • [PA] Acknoledgement of Country
  • [PA] Overview of Pat being host (short personal intro)
  • [PA] Introduction to Ruby Australia
  • [PA] Overview of meeting protocols (asking questions, voting, etc.)
  • [PA] Introduction of committee; recognition of apologies
  • [PA] Ratification of minutes from 2022 AGM
    • Brief overview of protocol
    • Minutes ratified as accurate (7 votes affirming, 0 votes dissenting)
  • [NW] President’s Report:
    • Major focus for RubyAU over last 6 months was RubyConfAU in Feb 2023
    • “…my personal opinion, a roaring success”
    • Interjections (visually) by SGM attendees in support of statement
    • Particular thanks to event manager Deb - amazing job
    • Conference considered as very well received
    • Made that way thanks to efforts by lots of people
    • Also have been supporting meetups continuing or restarting
    • Upcoming RailsGirls events in MEL and SYD (synchronous event in July)
    • Thanks and recognition of Sharon Vaughan for her time on committee as (outgoing) VP
    • Engaged in planning of RailsCamp for this year; tentatively in QLD
    • Coordinating with some folks already
    • Still seeking additional EOIs from volunteers for running camp
  • Questions for President:
    • [PA] Timeframe on RailsCamp?
    • [NW] Nothing reportable as yet; depends a lot around potential venue
  • [MB] Treasurer’s Report:
    • “Live from New Zealand”
    • Approx $141K in bank
    • RubyConfAU 2023 - ran at very slight profit
    • Good for helping us run our other events
  • [NW] Additional note that we’ve updated our banking to take advantage of higher interest rates
  • Questions for Treasurer:
    • [LS] Estimate on $ needed as “buffer” for covering future event costs (particularly venue deposits)?
    • [MB] Roughly $90~$100K; most $ is around venue hire and the bookend social events
    • [JS] MCEC venue hire cost for RubyConfAU? [MCEC is aka “Jeffs Shed”]
    • [MB] About $70K
  • [MG] Sponsorship Report:
    • Sponsorship Prospectus just updated as of last AGM and conference announcement
    • Sponsors rapidly “rolling in” after that
    • Most sponsors chose to renew their sponsorship
    • Some at the same sponsor level; others higher; a few lower
    • Some new sponsors came on board; offset by a couple of sponsors dropping off
    • Some sponsors were a bit challenging for me and [MB] to sort out; bit lost for words
    • [PA] “needed a bit of encouragement, perhaps?”
    • [MG] end of the day it all got sorted
    • As [MB] mentioned, post-conf we’ve ended up slightly ahead of where we were
    • Well-positioned for events in 2023 and early 2024
    • Looking at implementing a CRM system to keep better track of our sponsors and obligations
    • Also wanting to do a very loose audit/assessment of sponsorship+financial systems to assess current situation and where we can improve
  • Questions for Sponsor Rep:
    • [DN] How long do sponsors get as sponsors?
    • [MG] Recap of Sponsor Intervals (as per Sponsorship Prospectus)
      • Basically 12 mo including a 1x RubyConfAU, at least 1x RailsCamp, all other RbAU events
      • Interval period is 12 mo min; longer if needed to meet those obligations
  • [PA] Meetup Reports
  • [KGF] MEL meetup
    • Going through several transitions
    • Trial of changing event host - from [KGF] to [SS]
    • Also seeking new permanent location and drinks sponsor
  • [DN] SYD meetup
    • Recently changed event host; from [MB] to [DN] and 2~3 other volunteers
    • Attendance 30~40 pax per meetup
    • New arrangement for food catering very positively received
    • Still struggle to get speakers each month
    • Good venue sponsor at present, but looking to rotate venue location
    • Like MEL, SYD is also looking into drinks sponsorship
    • [NW] absolutely, we can discuss outside SGM
  • [PA] Committee Elections
    • Most roles are 12 mo terms; Treasurer 24 mo
    • Per constitution, 50% of committee roles are up for election at each general meeting
    • Intent is to reduce loss of institutional knowledge and churn from leadership changes at each general meeting


  • At this meeting, there are 4 Positions available: VP, Treasurer, 2x General Members
    • Vote will only be taken if there are more nominees for the available role(s) than empty positions
    • Position of VP:
      • [PA] gives brief overview of VP role and responsibilities, 12mo role
      • [TM] nominated [LS] in advance; [NW] seconds; [LS] accepts
      • No other nominations
      • [LS] declared elected to VP
    • Position of Treasurer:
      • [PA] gives brief overview of Treasurer role and responsibilities, 24mo role
      • [TM] nominated self in advance; [NW] seconds; [TM] accepts (assumed)
      • No other nominations
      • [TM] declared elected to Treasurer
        [TM] to be granted full access to Ruby Australia Commbank accounts 1321 7238 and 1321 7246 with full signatory powers on the account as a representative of Ruby Australia
    • Positions of General Member:
      • [PA] Gives brief overview of GM role and responsibilities
      • [PA] 2x terms expired (for [MG] and [KC]) - thus 2x 12mo GM Positions
      • [PA] Notes [LS] moving into VP role creates a 6 mo GM Position
      • [PA] Notes [TM] moving into Treasurer role creates another 6 mo GM Position
      • [PA] Hence 2x 12mo and 2x 6mo Positions available for election
      • [TM] nominated [DN] in advance; [MB] seconds; [DN] accepts
      • [CF] nominates self; [NW] seconds; [CF] accepts
      • [BG] nominates self; [NW] seconds; [BG] accepts
      • [BG] expresses interest in 6mo Position; avoids necessity for voting
      • [PA] declares [DN] and [CF] elected to 12mo GM Positions
      • [MG] potentially nominating self for remaining 6mo Position
      • [NW] clarifying nature of outstanding Positions; definitely 2x GM Positions
      • [MG] nominates self; [NW] seconds; [MG] accepts
      • [PA] declares [BG] and [MG] elected to 6mo GM Positions
  • [NW] Thanks to outgoing committee members [SV], [MB], [KC]
  • [KC] Thankyou and “I will be back!”
  • [PA] General Business & Questions without notice for Committee
    • [MB] Silly comment - considered two conferences every year?
    • [NW] “Thankyou for your suggestion; it will be minuted and considered.”
  • [NW] Thanks to [PA] for ongoing assistance, support and general help for Ruby AU in the background over many years
  • [NW] “Hat for Pat Project” is ongoing
  • [PA] Close meeting, wrap-up and thanks

Meeting adjourned at 1958 AEST

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