(apologies to those receiving duplicates - we are trying to reach our community at large)
The 2016 Google Summer of Code (GSoC) is coming up soon. The published timeline  puts the mentoring organization applications from Feb 8 to 19.
OBF participated on behalf of our member projects from 2010-2012, and in 2014. Those participations were both important and successful. Through them, our projects gained new contributors, new features, and new community members. The mentors involved from our projects learned as much from the experience as the students, and formed bonds. Starting in 2012 and in particular in 2014, we also committed to “paying it forward” on the organization level, welcoming a much broadened scope of projects to participate under our umbrella (see  for a summary). Finally, the mentoring organization payments have allowed OBF to sponsor community events, student travel awards, and infrastructure.
To participate this year, we have to appoint 2-3 people as primary and backup organization administrators. This is an important role, and we are looking for people from our community to step forward to serve. Our org admins from previous years (Eric Talevich and Raoul Bonnal) remain available for backup and guidance, but are unfortunately not in a position to take the lead org admin role.
## What does an org admin do?
An org admin’s role is in many ways that of a cat herder with a vision. The whole team of mentors and admins is what creates the experience for the students, but it falls on the org admin to “keep it together.” Google holds the mentoring organization, not its mentors, accountable for the actions (or non-actions) of its mentors or community, and it falls on the org admin to carry that accountability through to the org’s mentors. The org admin’s responsibilities include:
• Shaping and setting the overall vision (including scope) for our program participation.
• Serving as the primary contact for our participation to Google, to mentors, and to students.
• Shepherding our mentoring organization application, and submitting it.
• Determining processes and rules for mentors as well as students that promote transparency, fairness, and protect from late-in-the-game surprises.
• Knowing GSoC rules and processes, and making sure ours are consistent with them.
• Reminding participants of rules, and enforcing them in the event it is necessary.
• Mediating, and sometimes arbitrating between students and mentors when needed.
• Ensuring that GSoC timelines are met by everyone.
OBF’s 2016 program participation may continue or even extend from previous years the broadening of scope for participating projects. We could also partner with other open-source bioinformatics project communities to form a joint umbrella. These questions are part of setting the vision for our program participation, and intentionally not pre-set. Although the OBF Board retains a veto right, we have always given our community leaders full trust and full latitude once appointed.
The person we are looking for will genuinely care about the well-being of our communities; cares about students and student learning; is well organized; stays calm in email storms; communicates clearly; has good people skills; and generally is known as a good listener.
## How to respond?
If you are interested in helping us out in this role, please email us by Thursday Jan 21, 2016, a statement at [hidden email] explaining how you would fit well in this role, and what your vision for our GSoC participation is. You need not be a developer or programmer to respond, but having been active in some capacity in at least one of our project’s communities will certainly be very valuable. Please include in your email a brief summary of such activities, or a pointer to where they can be looked up online.
We are looking forward to hearing from you!
Hilmar Lapp, OBF President, on behalf of the OBF Board of Directors
Hilmar Lapp -:- lappland.io
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