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Thread: Candidate Manifestos for 2015/2016 Committee Election

  1. #1

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    Default Candidate Manifestos for 2015/2016 Committee Election

    This thread is for the CV/Manifestos of the candidates and will be locked.

    There is a discussion and Q&A forum here.

    The nine candidates standing in the 2015/2016 Executive Committee are (in alphabetical order):
    Alan Brook - twoofnine
    Jackie Fox - JnK Fox (Jackie Fox on forum)
    Arthur Griffiths - Griff Grof
    Abigail Hamilton-Thompson - Abiherts
    Jen Harley - Maple Leaf
    Richard Lay - Richlay
    Kim Leonard - Leonards193
    Adam Redshaw - UKCacheMag
    Ant Reid - sharant

    The election of the eight Committee places will be by SurveyMonkey email ballot during Tuesday-Sunday, 17-22, November 2015, and will be run by me who is serving as your Independent Returning Officer.

    Each eligible GAGB member (prior to 1st Oct) will be able to cast a maximum of 8 votes (as per the Constitution - Section N).
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 04:44 PM.
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  2. #2

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    Default Manifesto for Alan Brook/twoofnine

    My name is Alan and I'm a geoholic. But I realise that more than enthusiasm will be required to make a worthwhile contribution so before accepting this nomination to the GAGB committee I thought about what else I would be able to offer.

    My background is in customer service and computing and I feel that I have skills and experience that I can put to good use and that others can learn from and use. I have lived on the Isle of Man for 10 years and originally hail from Yorkshire.

    Two years ago I became the main administrator for the Manx Geocaching Facebook page and in that time have taken it from 22 to 1100 likes. The site has regular posts of both local and more diverse interest. I have also created a website for Manxgeocaching that links to many other social media sites too. I act as a liaison point with local landowners such as Manx National Heritage (the Isle of Man equivalent of the National Trust) and DEFA (Forestry) regarding permissions for the placing of geocaches and am involved in the ongoing project to map the local plantations, although this is currently very much a work in progress and is proving to be a lengthy task. My geocaching experience also includes chairing the committee of this year's very popular and successful ManxCacheFest and, with my wife, hosting three of the week's events.

    Of course, the Isle of Man is only a small region covered by GAGB but, as one half of ‘twoofnine', I have travelled to many geocaching events in the UK and Europe including Megas and Gigas and have also cached, and collaborated with cachers, in the USA. This has helped me to see geocaching in its wider context. In doing so I have met many wonderful and inspiring people including past and present members of GAGB and its committee. I see the hobby of geocaching as one with so many aspects to explore you will never get bored. I try to place geocaches of all types and sizes and am particularly fond of mystery caches. I understand however that people cache in different ways and that there is something in our hobby to appeal to everyone.

    I would like to thank Sharon of Sharant for nominating me and giving me the chance to work with them and share my skills and experience to help to support and promote Geocaching in Great Britain. I am sure I have a lot to offer AND a lot to learn!
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 06:42 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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  3. #3

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    Default Manifesto for Jackie Fox/JnK Fox (Jackie Fox on forum)

    I am Jackie from JnK Fox. I originate from Glasgow in Scotland but live in Newcastle under Lyme in Staffordshire with my husband Kris, we have 4 children, all left home now and 4 grand children and another grand child on the way.

    I have been caching for 4 years now and have over 4000 smilies and cache with Kris, we love country walks and placing our own caches in the local areas to us. I love caching as it has taken me to areas that I would never have been to and have made lots of new friends. In particular meeting our local cachers at our monthly Stoke or Stafford events.

    What can I do for GAGB? I feel that the GAGB is needed for Geocaching in the UK, but more people need to know about it and what they do for caching in the UK. I would like to help promote the GAGB more within the geocaching community to increase the numbers. I think the newsletter is great but could be better publicised to get a greater readership.

    In my day job I work in IT and Admin and would be able to put these skills to the GAGBs use.

    I am honoured to be nominated to stand for this year’s election.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 04:44 PM.
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  4. #4

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    Default Manifesto for Arthur Griffiths/Griff Grof

    I’m Arthur (Griff Grof), I live in the Cotswolds and I’ve been caching since March 2010. I love going on long walks to find caches, discovering stunning spots I would otherwise have never visited - it is this drive for further discovery and more adventure which pushes me to continue caching. I have enjoyed placing and maintaining two loops which have grown to become very popular, Westcote Wander and Snowshill Scramble, and am planning to place another soon. I keep a blog which I update as often as possible, especially after notably great trips.

    I also enjoy the social aspect of caching. I joined CacheWalker in 2010 and helped the forum increase in activity, prior to launching a new site and taking over as administrator in 2012. I continue to strive for CacheWalker to grow, and our forum already has three times as many posts as the original. I have also enjoyed organising, or co-organising, many CacheWalker events, some of which have attracted over 50 people. This has included an introductory walk for Scouts to teach them good geocaching etiquette and how to place a cache in accordance with the guidelines.

    I was also one of the first members of Gackt’s Cotswold Caching forum. I have acted as one of the moderators since 2013. It has been great to see the site grow in a similar fashion, and this year saw the commencement of bimonthly events; I hope to organise my first one soon.

    Most recently, I have been involved in the running of #UKGeocachingHour, which happens on Twitter every Tuesday. This has become increasingly more popular over the past few months, and I thoroughly enjoy overseeing it and helping whenever I can. I also admin CacheWalker’s Twitter account, which I tweet from regularly.

    It is an honour to be considered for a role on the GAGB committee; I first became a member of the GAGB in Spring 2012 and have taken part in some of the Q&A discussion during the election process in the past. I have sincere respect for the GAGB, and recognise the pivotal role it plays in UK caching: without it, I reckon the scene would be rather different. I should be clear that I am studying for my A Levels in the summer, therefore I would have to balance my study needs with my commitment to the committee, should I be elected. I am sure I will be able to strike the right balance.

    I feel that I would bring great enthusiasm, ambition and passion to the GAGB committee; I would endeavour to see the GAGB continue to grow and flourish: it would be great to raise its profile even further. I also would be happy to contribute and help in any way I can, whether on the web, by organising events or anything else. I also have several new ideas, one of which is the establishment of more regular, perhaps roving, GAGB events. In any case, I am certain that the committee will achieve many fantastic things in the coming year, and I would love to be a part of it - it would be an honour.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 07:18 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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    Default Manifesto for Abigail Hamilton-Thompson/Abiherts

    I started geocaching in 2008 and after a slow few years really caught the bug. I now cache nearly every weekend and have been to a number of local events and megas.

    I really love how geocaching takes you to new places you might not have explored before and points out little known facts you might not have been aware about if not for caching. I'm also a health walk volunteer and have seen the transformation for many- how geocaching gets people out exercising and enjoying the countryside. How many of you have seen health improvements through caching? I have certainly become much fitter and a more regular walker since I have taken up the hobby.

    What can I offer the GAGB? I'm readily available whenever needed, I have excellent organisational and secretarial skills as I've worked as an outdoor journalist previously. I feel I have a good understanding of many aspects of geocaching and want to expand on this further in an official capacity. I'm keen to promote the GAGB as much as I can by any means possible. I still feel that not enough cachers are aware that the association even exists! If elected I will play a positive role within the GAGB using all of my skills that I have to help raise the profile of the association while assisting each and every individual cacher.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 06:44 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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  6. #6

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    Default Manifesto for Jen Harley/Maple Leaf

    I have been on the GAGB Committee since 2010 and for the past three years I have held the Chairman position. This has meant that I have a good understanding of the GAGB and have contributed to all areas and covered tasks when other committee members have been unavailable. I had decided earlier this year that I wouldn’t be standing for Chair again and was pleased to see that Sharon (sharant) has taken on this role and would very much like to work alongside her for another year.

    During my time of the committee, I have written and sourced content for Seeker, written minutes, helped with the set up & testing of the GAGB website, GLAD and the online shop, administered the forums, assisted with GAGB registrations, updated the social media sites and answered some of the incoming landowner & general enquiries.

    I have been caching for over 10 years and have been an active member of the GAGB forums for the majority of that time. I have also been speaking to landowners and promoting geocaching & the GAGB in my local area. This has included hosting ‘Introduction to Geocaching’ days at Local Nature Reserves for the past two years. The GAGB was represented and we talked to people about geocaching and showed them how to use GPS receivers and help them find some geocaches.

    For the third year running, I have hosted a CITO event for the GAGB weekend. Two of these were held in a limestone flower meadow, where we helped the Mendip Society to scythe the vegetation at the end of the summer as a thank you for giving me permission to place geocaches on their land.

    I live on the edge of the Mendip Hills in Somerset, but travel all over the UK and Ireland with my job, which gives me the opportunity to attend various events and meet cachers around the country.

    When time permits, I prefer finding caches that involve a walk of a few miles leading to a viewpoint or an interesting feature rather than a ‘cache & dash’ or number chasing. I tend to set myself ‘personal caching targets’ and have completed my D/T grid, my UK caching map and the LQ challenge series and am working my way through my Jasmer grid and the last few areas on my Irish map.

    My time on the committee has gone quickly and I would very much like to be given the opportunity to continue with projects already started and to work alongside Sharon over the next year.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 06:45 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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  7. #7

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    Default Manifesto for Richard Lay/Richlay

    I will be brutally honest. This has been a very frustrating year on the committee. We started with a full compliment but over the year lost two members, one that left a big void that we really struggled to fill and one that never really got involved despite big statements in his manifesto and hustings. That left us on the back foot for the entire session and a committee unable to do things the way it ought.

    I urge fellow candidates to review what they said they would commit to last year and question whether they have delivered on it, I know I have been left wanting in a few areas.

    But more than that, I urge voters to use the hustings period to really dig in to the detail on the candidates, to question the impact that existing committee members have had, to challenge promises made. I am happy to be held to account on my part of it. Last year's Q&A session didn't go far enough in my opinion and that was a shame.

    Anyway, moving on from the frustrations. I continued my role as treasurer, provided admin controls on the Facebook pages, did a bit of tweeting and controlled the event list. I represented the GAGB at well over 70 events, including all the UK mega events and the ManxCacheFest. I manned the stall with some fellow committee members at Essex where it was great to meet so many of you. I organised and hosted the GAGB camping event that ran alongside the Morecambe bay crossing, that was a huge amount of fun. In short, in a busy year professionally and personally, I think I pulled my weight.

    The next 11 months will be interesting. We need to understand what direction Sharon will steer us and how the committee can best support her vision. Despite my frustrations, my belief in the need for a GAGB has not altered, neither has my belief that I can contribute to it.

    If I were able to influence Sharon's direction it would be focusing us on events and making us visible and supporting new players, the same view I have always held.

    Thank you for electing me to the committee for the last 2 years, I hope I can return for a third.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 06:45 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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  8. #8

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    Default Manifesto for Kim Leonard/Leonards193

    My name is Kim Leonard (Leonards193) and I live in South Gloucestershire just north of Bristol. I started caching with the family in 2009 and the hobby has taken us to some superb locations along the way. Most of all, I have made some amazing friends and shared some great adventures, some planned and most accidental (getting lost numerous times!) As a family we have just passed the 3000 finds mark and are on our way steadily towards 350 cache hides. I have two golden retrievers who are usually out caching with me too, Bear and Blaze.

    I would like the opportunity to remain on the GAGB committee for a second year and if re-elected, would like to carry on with developing a greater awareness of the Association through presentations to various groups (so far this year Scouts, Guides, Brownies, W.I) and spreading the word about geocaching and what we do.

    I would like to organise my first ever CITO event as a GAGB weekend one and I hope to be able to organise a couple of GAGB events over the next 12 months (pending the formula of the events being agreed by the committee). I hope to get to grips with developing land owner agreements too, something I have not done yet.

    I will be attending the major caching events in the UK in 2016 and would be proud to represent the GAGB in any capacity (helping on a stall, running an activity etc).

    Many thanks for reading and thank you for your vote.

    Cheers,

    Kim
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 06:46 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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    Visit the GeocacheAlaska! website.

  9. #9

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    Default Manifesto for Adam Redshaw/UKCacheMag

    Adam Redshaw's manifesto was not received by the given deadline.

    Hi all first sorry this is late. I had been away the weekend of the deadline and not had chance to catch up with all that I had to do on my return.

    Like some of the others who are re-standing I also feel the last 12 months have been difficult for the committee – much of what we set out to achieve was not completed – for a number of reasons.

    If I am re-elected to the team then I hope to have a much more defined role and have something to work towards.

    Over the coming 12 months I hope to be out and about as a face of geocaching, this will be helping to raise the profile and public awareness of what our wonderful hobby / activity / addiction is all about. Part of this will be continuing to work alongside the Outdoor Industries association to perhaps get more formal recognition for the GAGB and geocaching with bodies like the Sports Trust. This may allow us to work towards some funding to host a number of courses and taster session similar to the ones Garmin did alongside the National Trust.

    I would like to see more links with such bodies raised improving the profile of GAGB and welcoming new people to the activity.

    I feel the GAGB needs a stronger presence at “Mega” events where perhaps we put on displays and interact with the people there more than we have done historically.

    I also hope to continue the work I have been doing with servicing the GAGB orders through the shop – and aim to improve on the sometimes slow dispatching of orders that I take sole responsibility for.

    As mentioned when I stood before I do run a magazine all about geocaching – and I do not see this as a conflict of interest.

    I am also a keen cacher- having started in 2008 and now have over 2200 finds– I like to know more about what’s happening around the country – and often travel to different areas to meet cachers take part in events and promote the GAGB.

    I like to think I am fairly well know liked and trusted in the geocaching world – and keep trying to improve myself on this aspect.
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 12th November 2015 at 12:20 AM. Reason: To post manifesto and photo.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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    Visit the GeocacheAlaska! website.

  10. #10

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    Default Manifesto for Ant Reid/sharant

    Hi – I’m Ant and I’ve been geocaching for 6 years . My first geocache was a multi and I have had a soft-spot for them ever since – they take a bit more effort but generally speaking they take me to nice places, which I think is what happens when caching is at its best. I’d like to help GAGB to help us all do that better, and I have some ideas…

    An important role for GAGB could be in communicating – that’s representing us to the outside world, that’s educating new cachers and would-be cache owners, and that’s helping us to connect with each other. The forums are not well used – but with some effort from some of us they could become a great repository of common British-focused questions and good ideas – sometimes just linking out to other places, of course. Seeker is an interesting read and has beautiful pictures, but I think it’s a bit unfocused – can we give it a niche – perhaps again around educating, welcoming, introducing people to new things. Maybe we have regular spots for ‘my first cache’ or ‘the best place that caching alone took me’ – or something like the old ‘agony Aunt’? Let’s ask the readership in a survey…?

    Reaching out to non-cachers might seem a bit of an odd idea – we always hide from muggles, don’t we? Well, I’ve organised a few CITOs in my time – for example the one on the day of the 2013 Mega in Warwickshire – and it’s always been hard to get the attention of the local council, or landowners, or whomever. GAGB can be a great vehicle to raise our profile, through the media, through letters to local papers, and through ‘official’ channels. Doing that will make it so much easier to organise things like CITOs, or events on council land, and can create a good feeling with such organisations. What if we got enough attention that councils were asking us for help and advice, instead of us pestering them to allow us to help them…? Let’s create an ‘atmosphere’ that enables such things to happen.

    Finally, I would be looking for volunteers and helpers outside of the committee – reaching out to people who might want to give something a go and add a bit - like an event, or an article, or a column, or moderate a forum. Why not? There’re plenty of folks that would like to try your hands at something, and GAGB should encourage you all to get involved!
    Last edited by LadybugKids; 11th November 2015 at 07:01 AM.
    In Alaska, the best athletes eat raw meat, sleep in the snow, and run naked.
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    Visit the GeocacheAlaska! website.

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