Thursday, May 26, 2011

SLSA Director Candidates Interviews Part 2

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, SurfWatch received five interviews back. See their interviews below. All interviews are posted in the order received. Voting opens on June 1st. Stay tuned for more details!


Candidate Name: GiavannaMarie Melody


SW: You are currently ranked 30 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?

GM: This season I am ranked 30th. I have in the past been a top 20 rider. This season I have been concentrating more on the SLSA and the function of it as apposed to surfing competitons. I have been director twice. I have been a part of the SLSA for over two years now. One of my primary roles is the Sponsor Liaison. My team affiliation is with the Reef Rider, which I am team captain for. I own Surfari surf wear. I have also been designing some of the rashies for this season as well as past seasons. I believe one of my strongest assets is communication and being available to those who participate in our community.

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

GM: One of the main focuses I think needs improving is having volunteers for our events that help with Judging, and Marshalling. It has become a real burden on some who love to donate there time, but we need more involvement. It is also important that this mix of volunteers come from each team.

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?

GM: One of the top issues facing SL surfing is still an ongoing issue. We need to find a way to save our current sims that are dedicated to sl surfing. We need to explore new alternatives or find solutions that can help with maintaining these great sims.

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

GM: I feel that all my counterparts ave worthy of being a director. I believe that my experience as a director and character as a memeber of the community makes me the best candidate for one of the three open positions. I love being a part of the SLSA and give myself 100% to it.

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

GM: It has been very refreshing to have brought a great season that saw some pretty radical ideas as far as wave setups go. It has been challenging. But it has added to a new level of excitement. The developement of new waves has really wet the appetite of our surfers who demand more from us. I really wasnt dissatisfied with anything. But two things I do feel strongly about is having more qualified judges and finding a way to improve on competition run time.

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

GM: I would love to continue to build upon the changes that have come with the last 6 months I been a director. We have some exciting projects in the works that I feel passionate about. The SLSA is a huge part of my sl life, and I am looking forward to serving the community that votes for us again.



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?

GM: It has been a great concern that our numbers have decreased. But in turn, we also have had some past surfers return this season. If we do move to a one event competition, I feel it could be spread out over 2 days. It could also help reduce the stress of having to find 6 judges for a two round series. This is definitly something the next group of directors need to focus on before the start of the next season.

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?

GM: A serious big issue. We have lost a few sims last year and we continue to lose them at an alarming rate. We have thought of some ideas in the past such as having one sim where we have the stands...not neccessarily the sim at the comp. But at another location, and have some sort of video feed to that sim. It has been something discussed in the past and is an issue the directors have been taking seriously. Without a variety of sims, our competitions cannot have the same level of excitement it currently has.


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?

GM: It seems like it has been the same judges running each comp. I feel we need to look into ways to expand our pool of judges. One idea would to require teams that are registered with the SLSA to have one or two representatives trained as judges. and have a rotation from the teams. We did implement the drop one score to encourage more people to participate without penalty. But it seems this has not really helped our cause as we hoped originally.


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?

GM: Again as previously mentioned we instituted this stipulation to encourage volunteers. I feel it may have to be revisited. Or a better solution can be resolved. That is something the directors have looked at, and feel during the break between seasons needs to be re looked at.





Candidate Name: Imzadi Amaterasu, just call me Zadi

SW: You are currently ranked n/a for last season's SLSA surf rankings and you've been SL surfing for more than 1 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?

IA: I was not in last season but I am in this season and currently tied for 10th place with Cierra.
With everything I do and support, I give my all in it. If I feel I can contribute, I do. When I started working for LV in SL for example, I started as a CSR assisting customers. Within two months I was being offered Manager which eventually led to my General Manager position. I showed the skills needed to see things done, the ambition and the maturity in handling everything put in front of me. The SLSA is no different in how I approach things. It was said the SLSA wanted fresh meat, smiles. I am just that. I don’t know all the happenings and *coughs* drama from the past which I think is great cause I can give unbiased ideas to the other directors when asked for ideas. I know being new means I have a lot to learn as opposed to some of my fellow running mates in regards to the operations of the SLSA but if you’re looking for a fresh perspective, I’m your woman.

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

IA: The biggest area for improvement I see is event staff for competitions. Training people is great and I have seen Judges training. I have not seen EC or Marshall classes though. I would also like to see the new judges coming in being put to work quicker if possible. Without staff for these competitions, there is no competition.

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?

IA: I think there are a lot of issues in SL surfing but the tops ones I think are that many people are losing sims due to rise in tier costs and the growth of the surfing community. Tier costs we really can’t control that however if sim owners ask I’m sure there are enough people around that can assist is setting up market areas where stores can be rented out if the sim owner didn’t now how to set that up. Growth on the other hand is something that we can control to a point. We can advertise and spread the word. I honestly didn’t know surfing did exist in SL until a few months ago. By spreading the word and reaching out to other areas of SL advertising, we might just bring in new surfers and grow as a community.
SW: Why are you the best candidate for this job?

I
A: As I mentioned before, I am a fresh face. Sometimes when a person has been doing things awhile, they get stuck in how things are done only being done one way. By bringing me in a fresh face I could possibly bring in alternative ideas that may be more efficient or things that may be exciting and new which would be attractive to gaining new members of the SLSA.

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

IA: I cannot speak about last season since I was not around. I can however tell you that the only way I would not be satisfied with a member is if the member brought drama to me or to the position. We have enough drama in our lives and that is not what I am about nor do I think that’s what the SLSA is about either.

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

IA: I am very hard working as I am sure my fellow candidates are as well. I know I have a lot to learn and I look forward to learning it quickly so I can be an asset to the board and contribute my fair share.

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?

IA: I am concerned about the low number of competitors in the open which I do have an idea on a way to balance the open and pro comps so that we have a balance. It would strengthen the two weekend format I think and maybe appeal to people more.

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?

IA: Advances sim script and performance methods needs to be taught to sim owners who ask for help. Many sims I go to, not just SL surfing, sim owners have no clue how to check performance. They might know how to run diagnostics but not know what the numbers mean exactly which is vital.

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?

IA: The first thing I would do is start training for other positions such as Marshall and EC. By training these positions, people could rotate between staff positions so they are not always only judging. I have seen Judges training a couple times from the time I did my judges training but I have not seen other position training classes. Maybe some variation might draw some interest. Also I would take a look at why people don’t want to work Pro comps. Ask them to be frank with you. If they don’t want to speak openly about it, have a drop box they can submit an already created notecard by an SLSA director into a box. the NC would provide complete anonymous answers or even create a web form which could be anonymous also. The basic point on how to resolve the issue is communication. You have to have communication with your staff and listen to them. Otherwise you will continue to face a dwindling staff.

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?

IA: This question is kind of tough. On one hand, if the rule was specifically one pass for one volunteer staff and people are taking advantage of it then yes, I could see taking the privilege away. However, anywhere I have been I have been told RL first, SL later. Speaking for myself I know sometimes real life gets in the way at the worst times. As much as I can plan to be free from RL expectations for that day, it is nice to know that I could have a pass just in case. Real life does happen. Emergencies happen.
Honestly what I would purpose is a different structure. All surfers get one pass per season due to RL. All surfers who work a Pro comp get a pass up to 2 or 3 per season but only if they work the comp. Might boost some incentive for people to volunteer too.

I would like to thank SurfWatch for sending me this questionnaire interview and allowing me a chance to introduce myself.



Candidate Name: Coolkat Delicioso

SW: You are currently ranked god knows what for last season's SLSA surf rankings and you've been SL surfing for more than 99 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?

CD: Phew! here goes... lol...I learned a hellova lot from Abel when I came to the board this last term, he took me under his wing, and I'm eternally grateful for what he taught me too, thanks Abel, plus I've learned a lot more besides. My eyes are now wide open to what we have to deal with each season and at every competition, and that goes from understanding the needs and requirements of the surfer , the staff, and to that of the sim owner and sponsors. I consider myself a pretty positive person, and I like to think I speak in a clear way that most people can understand. Also being a competitor myself, I understand and listen to the voice of the surfers out there and hear what they have to say, and try to tackle the problems and requests they may have. So I feel I'm pretty qualified now to handle the job with the minimum of fuss and that's why I'm running.
Also I feel I could be an asset to the SLSA, in that I can help pass all this gained knowledge and experience onto new directors. I work hard and I play hard, and anyone who knows me or have served on the board with me,or worked on projects with me, know that I'm not bullshitting here, I'm a bloody grafter. There is an awful lot of hard work that needs to be done here each term, and I'm willing to do it. I'm under no illusions as to what this job entails .

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

CD: The areas of improvement that I currently see that are needed, are communications between the board, surfboard makers, wave makers and the ssi scripters is definitely lacking. I for one would like to see more involvement and communication by them, maybe its because I'm not old school here and they don't answer my NC's? I don't know? But we do all need to talk!
What good has happened.. well Archi looks nicer eh? lol, faster, smoother running comps have happened, not all mind, but a happier vibe all round is definitely felt. But this all has to be worked on and improved to achieve better results for all concerned in the future.
Also I think communications seem better, between the board and surfers.

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?

CD: I see the top issues facing SL surfing to be funding mainly, and the loss of surfing sims, plus the length of some competitions. All can be massively improved with good communication, plus when a surf sim goes, not only do we lose a sim, we sadly lose a part of our whole social environment.
So first priority would be to explore through positive discussion, different ways of tackling these problems, as this seems to be a reoccurring theme. Also making surfers aware of situations as they arise is always going to help, and sorting Archi out : )

SW: All the candidates are qualified - why should voters elect you over any other candidates?

CD: I'd say I'd be a good choice to vote for, but then I would say that, I want my old desk back..lol... mind that being said, everyone up for running is capable, once taught, of doing the job, so you make your own minds up voters.

SW: What were you most satisfied with as an SLSA member last season? What were you most dissatisfied with?
CD: I was most satisfied with the new venues, the waves, the vibe, DJ Dan, the fun had by all, and the general feeling that was going around, it's been an awesome past season.
Dissatisfied? With my health mainly, and having to quit the board before I had completed my term, plus I had not achieved all of my goals. (one being, turning Archi around .)But feeling fit again, I'm ready to continue where I left off.

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

CD: I work hard and do my best to get the job done. Also I say things as they are, in plain understandable English, no point in beating about the bush here, let people know, give them praise if they are doing good, or tell them politely what harm they are doing, if they are unaware they are causing difficulties or grief for other riders. we are here to help each other after all, not piss one another off. Plus I always endeavor to achieve my aims and that of the board. I try my utmost to please, and help comps run quickly , smoothly and with the minimum of fuss, and for surfers to enjoy themselves at comps, and to be able to relax, safe in the knowledge that they are in capable hands. I hate bullies, drama, people on power trips, sycophants, empty glasses and bs. oh, and surfers who don't bloody listen up to whats being said at comps, i.e. the silly buggers who click on waves and boards, and the ones who head down to the beach before being called, or turn up at the comp sim causing spikes for riders, instead of arriving at the stands..hehe jokin'.. no I'm not actually, it slows up comps and ruins rides! PAY ATTENTION YOU DUMBASS! hahaha!
I love life, having a laugh at surfing comps, music, dancing, and happy, helpful, friendly people. Oh, and the never ending supply of sl tequila, wacky hair and silly outfits..
I'm like marmite, you either love me or you don't. Either way, I'm all for the surfer in sl, and will do my utmost to help them.

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?

CD: It happens from time to time, as seen in previous seasons. The future of the two round comp? The thing is, sponsors pay for their ads to be placed at 2 comps not one, so that would have to be looked at, plus the revenue brought ins should be more with 2 comps, and plus we get to party two weekends in a row. Ok I know staff has to be paid. we could have the first come first served comp, where the first 40 riders get to surf, but that still leads to a long drawn out comp. Timed heats .. they aint the way forward either,, so personally I think it should be divided into two weekends with a first come first served format... with half the heats and semi on the first weekend, and the rest with a semi and final the following weekend.


2. With the continuing decline of full surf sims with supporting neighbor sims for spectators, 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?

CD: Sim owners,.. well holding comps at their sims, and holding their own fund-raisers and parties should help bring in traffic and funds, also use slsa open chat to spam it too, and ask the Comms officer to post announcements of events they may be holding, as long as they don't clash with comps, its all for the good of surfing in sl, so use it, why not. It will make more surfers aware of their sims, plus surfers should try and dip into their pockets a lil when visiting sims, if at all possible. The smooth running of comps? Communication is always the key to this, well as I've mentioned a few points earlier, listening to EC's announcements, plus making surfers aware of things that can slow up comps, like not getting ready on time etc, having good trained staff available is a must to having a smooth run comp.

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?

CD: I think we are already working hard to resolve this issue. trained judges and marshalls are the key, and thats happening at last. Plus Sally has drawn up a list of who is trained up, so that HJ's wont find it so difficult in finding judges at pro events. But willingness to volunteer has to be stepped up by surfers if comps are to continue.

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?

CD: In short no. You may have a hospital appointment or some other RL issue that you have to attend to. Some people are free enough to devote all their spare time to sl issues, and others don't have that luxury. I think most surfers, if they have the time, should offer to volunteer at least once a season tho, if they possibly can.


1 comment:

Kantbe Thursday said...

See'n as how I'm currently on the Board, I don't think it's appropriate for me to publicly endorse a candidate. We've got a great selection of candidates this time too. I've got to say, though, that based upon my experience and knowing what the Board has to do both during and between seasons, I see the potential for a great team of Directors coming from this election.

If you'd like to hear my absolutely, means nothing to anyone but me, personal views, just IM me some time.

Tanya didn't give me the tag, "Tan's Chatty Wifie" for nut'n, ya know. :-))