Candidate for Vice President: Mary Robinette Kowal

Dear SFWA members:

I’m running for the position of Vice President. For the last two years, I’ve been privileged to work with a extremely active and committed board as Secretary of SFWA. We’ve made great strides in organizational issues, such as the new Nebula rules, the new website, and the draft of the new bylaws. I’m excited by the changes that are coming to the organization and I would very much like to continue helping SFWA regain solid footing so that it can continue to inform, support, promote, defend and advocate for our members.

  • I have been an Active member of SFWA since 2007 and served on the board since 2008.
  • In addition to my Board duties, I have also supervised the team which built your new website, sourced and manage the new membership management software, and researched options for health insurance.
  • I was the 2008 Campbell Award Winner for Best New Writer.
  • I’ve sold two fantasy novels to Tor, with my debut novel, Shades of Milk and Honey, appearing this summer.
  • In addition, I’ve sold 30 short stories to markets such as Asimov’s, Strange Horizons and Clarkesworld as well as appearing in several Year’s Best. Last year my short story, “Evil Robot Monkey” was on the Hugo ballot.
  • Besides writing, I am a professional puppeteer and voice actor and have worked in the arts for the last twenty years. I served on the Board of Directors and as the Vice President of UNIMA-USA, the American branch of the international puppetry organization.
  • My work in the arts has give me experience in how effective non-profits function, as well as grant-writing and volunteer management.
  • I live with my husband, Rob, in Portland, OR.

My primary focus as Vice President would be to continue the work that the current board has done to give SFWA organization stability. In addition, to the points in John Scalzi’s overall goals I would like to improve our outreach to industry professionals. Since our new website went live last summer 132 new members have joined SFWA, compared with 98 total in 2008. While this upward trend is good, it is obvious that we can improve our communication to both the membership and the larger SF and Fantasy community.

I look forward to continuing my work for SFWA as part of the 2010-2011 Board of Directors.