Wednesday, May 25, 2011

SLSA Candidates for Directors Interviews

SurfWatch conducts these in-depth interviews to help voters get a clear picture of the candidates that are running for the Board and gives candidates an opportunity to introduce themselves to the voters. All five candidates were sent the same interview. See their interviews below. All interviews are posted in the order received. Voting opens on June 1st. Stay tuned for more details!




Candidate Name: Maldrul Morris

SW: You are currently ranked
#5 for last season's SLSA surf rankings and you've been SL surfing for more than 2 years. We understand you have announced your intent to run for SLSA Director this term. What qualifications,
skills, competencies, traits, etc. would you bring as a director and why are you running?

MM: I am a computer consultant and have skills that could be utilized for maintenace of the SLSA website and forum. I have been the unofficial official score keeper for Team Montego. I have been trained as an SLSA competition judge and judged more than a few competitions. This means I understand what is expected of surfers in a competition. I am a fair and honest elf with
a good work ethic. I am running for director because I wish to offer my services to help keep the SLSA organized and efficient.

SW: What areas of improvement do you currently see for the SLSA as an organization?

MM: I see a need for refinement of the ranking calculation, both for placement in individual competitions and season ranking. I also think that a campaign of general awareness of the existance of the organization and their sanctioned events in the larger SL community could revitalize the organization and increase participaion in associated events.

SW: What do you see as the top issues facing SL surfing in general, and what would be your first priority as an SLSA director?

MM: I feel that the #1 issue facing the SLSA today is recruiting members to participate in the administration of events. My first priority as an SLSA director would be to forge sincere friendly relationships with as many SLSA members as possible so that I would be able to effectively assist the SLSA where I am needed most.

SW: Why are you the best candidate for this job?

MM: I am the best candidate because I am thorough, intelligent and hard working. I will take the position of Director of the SLSA seriously and always consider the surfers when performing my duties.

SW: What were you most satisfied with as an SLSA member last season? What were you most dissatisfied with?

MM: I was most satisfied with the hard work of the event staff last season. I was most dissatisfied with lag.

SW: Anything else you would like voters to know about you?

MM: I make great cookies! ;>

Give us a brief statement or opinion on some of the major issues the SLSA faced in 2011 and possible issues moving into Season 2 (listed below):

1. Were you concerned with the low number of competitors signed up for the recent Open comps and what do you foresee for the future of the two-round, two-weekend SLSA competition format?

MM: Yes, I was concerned, enough to apply for a position as Director. I believe that the two round format is still viable if we can raise awareness of the SLSA and it's events within the larger SL community.

2. With the continuing decline of full surf sims with supporting neighbor sims for specators, and with more and more surf sims set up on Homesteads, what can be done to support the sim owners and ensure smooth running competitions?

MM: Make certain that tip jars for the sim are prominent and pointed out by the event DJ and coordinator during a competition. Negotiate with venue providers to remove or reduce lag inducing scripts and objects prior to a competition.

3. It has been an ongoing issue for the SLSA to find enough staff to work Pro comps, what are your thoughts on how to resolve this issue?

MM: Increased schedule of training classes for all support positions. Exempting judges and staff of Pro competitions from the DNC ranking they would receive for that competition.

4. The SLSA put into place a stipulation that a rider could miss one comp each season and not have it count against their rank in order to allow more people to volunteer to work comps. Most riders who use it are not using it to voluneteer but to do things in rl. Should this stipulation go back to being for volunteers only or should all riders be able to use this?

MM: SecondLife is called that because that is what it is: a second life. Real life has a way of interjecting itself frequently into all of our enjoyment of the game. The dropping of the worst competition score (or NS score) has helped otherwise great surfers obtain rankings more in line with their talent and less with their ability to attend. I think further incentives should be considered for event administration volunteers.



Candidate Name: Jac Mornington

SW: You are currently ranked 9th in this season's SLSA surf rankings and you've been SL surfing for more than 3 years. We understand you have announced your intent to run for SLSA Director this term. What qualifications, skills, competencies, traits, etc. would you bring as a director and why are you running?

JM: I am willing and able to volunteer my time to assist managing and directing the activities of the SLSA. I have participated in the SLSA at just about every level as surfer, event staff, sponsor, and sim host. As have many still with the group, I have seen both high and low times for the SLSA. Throughout all of it, SLSA still remains because at its core is a group of people who truely enjoy sharing what surfing has to offer to the greater SL community. I would like to think I have been a part of promoting that spirit.

SW: What areas of improvement do you currently see for the SLSA as an organization?

JM: I see new faces...new surfers, new staff, new visitors. I think the SLSA has been making great progress training new people to fill event staffing needs. I thank all of those who donate their time, and in many cases their opportunity to surf, so that we can continue to host a great experience.
SW: What do you see as the top issues facing SL surfing in general, and what would be your first priority as an SLSA director?

JM: I am first concerned with the SLSA event experience. Organizing and running these events is our core function. Providing the members, sponsors, and vistors with a positive experience is most important for the continued success of the SLSA and promoting our activity in SL.

Secondly, I am concerned with the transparency in regards to finances. I would like to see a schedule of payouts and prizes posted prior an event. At the very least, I would like to see actual payouts for staff and surfer prizes posted afterwards, as it states to be done on the SLSA website under Rulebook/SLSA Prizes and Payments:
"When Sponsorships are finalised for an event we will publish a list of what the actual prizes and fees will be for that event."
It is difficult to recieve support and donations from others when so much is unclear in the SLSA financial reporting practices.


SW: Why are you the best candidate for this job?

JM: My real life experience in planning and running projects from start to finish gives me the awareness of what is required to make something happen. I am dedicated to volunteering my time and energy to further the mission of the SLSA. I look forward to working as a team putting forth the best experience we can to the members, sponsors, and visitors.

SW: What were you most satisfied with as an SLSA member last season? What were you most dissatisfied with?

JM: Most satisfied ...... all the new faces.
Most dissatisfied ..... long comps

SW: Anything else you would like voters to know about you?

JM: Apparently I have a thing for rocks;)

Give us a brief statement or opinion on some of the major issues the SLSA faced in 2011 and possible issues moving into Season 2 (listed below):

1. Were you concerned with the low number of competitors signed up for the recent Open comps and what do you foresee for the future of the two-round, two-weekend SLSA competition format?

JM: Yes I am concerned with turn-outs in general. New surfers were made at surfing sims, such as Tsunami, Monkey, HP, Bundy, Chi, and in the past Mori and SOL (go back further to Bishara) and many others. Each of these sims provide thier own surf cultures and drew new members to the sport and fellowship. These are where new members and the keepers of the surf spirit in SL reside. These sims and those like it are in need of the SLSA support.

I am not in favor of the 2 event format now in place. It drains a lot of resources and time from both staffing, hosting, and participants. I understand a time came when events were over subscribed, and this was a way to faciliate a means for all to surf.

I would explore with the directors a new seating/registering process. Maybe only Top 10 instead of 20 get a pass, and the rest are open seats. No preference would be given to your place registering online, but if more surfers were signed up than allowed, a simple drawing would be held.

Maybe the answer lies in a new surfing format, instead of the 5/6 surfer heat with 3 waves. Maybe timed heats would facilitate more surfers. Maybe head to head heats. Someone mentioned eliminating semi finals as well.

I am open to all these ideas.


2. With the continuing decline of full surf sims with supporting neighbor sims for specators, and with more and more surf sims set up on Homesteads, what can be done to support the sim owners and ensure smooth running competitions?

JM: As I stated above, our surf sims must be supported. These sim owners not only provide the sims we surf events on, but most likely also sponsor the event they are hosting. Believe me, none of them gain anything from hosting an event., other then the enjoyment of others and thier desire to give to surfing community.

I do not support SLSA resources going towards Archipelago Sim. I feel it is under utilized, unnecessary, and competes with our surfing sims for resources. The SLSA can support and raise 150,000L (6 mos @ 25K) for a sim not used as event, not staffed, and poorly organizied, but can not support in some fashion those sims that host our events? I would propose a means for SLSA sponsoring sims to be compensated. In return, those sims would promote the SLSA, host events and training, and be available for all in SL to surf. These sims and thier owners are at the core of SL surfing.

3. It has been an ongoing issue for the SLSA to find enough staff to work Pro comps, what are your thoughts on how to resolve this issue?

JM: I have yet to be at an event that was canceled due to staffing. Members always find a way to step up. Encourage all to participate. I hear the last training seesion for judges was a success. Open the opportunities for people to volunteer and train and they will. Eliminate the barriers to training and support these new people. It isnt all about SL Surfing, that part is easy (relatively speaking). It is more about working together and creating enjoyable experiences.


4. The SLSA put into place a stipulation that a rider could miss one comp each season and not have it count against their rank in order to allow more people to volunteer to work comps. Most riders who use it are not using it to volunteer but to do things in rl. Should this stipulation go back to being for volunteers only or should all riders be able to use this?

JM: I have no problem with the one event off option, regardless if one volunteers or not. It relieves some of the burden on over registration, it allows for RL to happen, and it encourages people to volunteer.

No comments: