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Appropedia:Executive Director

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Message from the board[edit]

Dear Appropedians!

Three years ago we announced our search for a person to take over the operations of our ever-growing community and repository of projects. Today we are happy to announce that we have finally found that person, and he began his work on June 20th. Please join us in welcoming Emilio Velis as our new Executive Director.

Emilio developed his previous professional career over the past ten years on volunteer management and fundraising, most recently at Habitat for Humanity El Salvador. Emilio supported the design and improvement of programs for service-learning and ethical volunteerism, as well as other areas such as innovation and social resiliency. At the same time, he founded and developed Red de Acción Comunitaria, a technological initiative of sensors and communications to empower rural communities in areas vulnerable to natural disasters. More recently, Emilio has focused on design and community engagement as the basis for collaborating in research for a wide variety of subjects such as citizen science, education and violence prevention.

For the past few years, Emilio has participated on different networks that focus on openness and collaboration such as Internet Society, the Fab Lab Network and Creative Commons through local and international projects and governance. His work has opened the doors for him to collaborate on many different projects to explore with others the use of technologies for solving social problems in North and South America.

Our Board of Directors was very impressed with Emilio after seeing his experience, dedication, and track record on how technology and communities can build sustainability through well-focused programs of design and participation. He has also shown his commitment to not only making open works more accessible to people who need them, but also on learning how to best provide communities with the tools to make and share as equals and co-participants of the commons. Now that we have met him, we are very hopeful for the future of Appropedia and unanimously and confidently appointed him.

As the new Executive Director, Emilio is eager to work closely with the community in learning what motivates individuals and communities to document their local projects, and to find avenues on which these initiatives take life through replication and growth. As Appropedia grows and develops new ideas, he is committed to creating an open space for different groups that take part and benefit from the thousands of articles and many experiences created by the community.

We believe that having a new Executive Director dedicated to the operations of the site and the execution of the many ideas that Appropedia has built over the years will open the possibility for the community to grow even more. He will base his work in San Salvador from which he will find new opportunities of social change through the Appropedia Foundation.

The Board of Directors and the community warmly welcomes Emilio into Appropedia.


Thank you,

-Lonny, Chris, Curt, Andrew & Kiva

Message from ED[edit]

Dear Appropedia Community,

Our new ED, Emilio!

As of June 20th, 2019, I have taken the position of Executive Director for the Appropedia Foundation. I would like to begin my work by sharing some thoughts on what this means to me.

I feel very honored for this appointment. From the beginning, I can see that Appropedia is born out of a passion to share knowledge and to make sustainable societies. I would like to express my gratitude to the Board of Directors for being open and supportive during the selection process, and for the trust that you have put in me for taking this role at an organization that means so much to you.

I am happy to be a part of Appropedia because it represents many of the values that I support such as openness, collaboration and honesty toward development practices. I promise to bring into my work many other values that I've learned over time, especially the lessons on work ethic and a spirit of service that thousands of volunteers have taught me over the years.

Appropedia was created over a decade ago out of the vision of a more sustainable world. At the time, many open platforms and open source movements were seen as eccentric and alternative by society, but the rise of information technology led many of these organizations to become an integral part of the world. I believe that Appropedia will follow suit, as the word sustainability has risen to become a core value for organizations and governments as a response to solve the problems of human settlements around the world.

I would love to get to know you as a community, and hear about what Appropedia means to you, so I can become a part of it. I also want to know about your vision and how can we think of next steps. Please drop an email to emilio.velis@appropedia.org to say hello. When the time comes, I'd love to organize an event to meet all of you and share stories–or even better, to build something together.

Technology reflects our view of ourselves and the world. More than ever, there is a need to tell the stories of sustainable technology. As we stand today, sustainability is not an alternative future, but the only one we can think of. Thank you for allowing me to work with you to share the values of living simple, clean and in collaboration, emerging from the rural and frugal to cities around the world.

Looking forward to working with all of you,

-Emilio