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Fwd: [Wikimedia Announcements] Cyn Skyberg joins Wikimedia as CTCO!
FYI. This position was originally advertised as Chief Human Resources
Officer at:

The change in title reflects internal conversations which led us to
refocus both the kinds of candidates we were looking at, and the
nature of the role itself: with a strong focus on helping Wikimedia
grow and sustain an organizational culture consistent with its values,
and developing processes to engage and recruit brilliant, passionate
people, as we begin to implement the strategic plan. :-)

All best,

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sue Gardner <>
Date: 2010/9/8
Subject: [Wikimedia Announcements] Cyn Skyberg joins Wikimedia as CTCO!
To: Wikimedia Announce Mailing List <>

Hi folks,

I'm delighted to tell you that the Wikimedia Foundation has just hired
its first-ever Chief Talent and Culture Officer. Cyn Skyberg will
begin work with us this coming Monday, September 13. She'll report to

As CTCO, Cyn will have two major first priorities: to help the
Wikimedia Foundation's hiring managers recruit amazing staff
(including key new positions such as the director of operations [1]
and the national program director for India [2]), and to continue the
work of creating and entrenching a staff culture that fits inside the
bigger Wikimedia culture and shares its values of independence,
openness, community, transparency and diversity. In this work, she'll
be supported by Daniel Phelps, the Wikimedia Foundation's Human
Resources Manager.

This is a really important job, and as I worked through the hiring
process it became clear that I needed to find someone unusually
creative and flexible, with a real passion for understanding and
supporting people in voluntary online communities.  Cyn stands out as
exactly that.

For the past five years, Cyn has worked at Linden Labs, the
organization behind Second Life. There, she held a series of
increasingly-responsible positions culminating in Vice President of
Partnerships -- all of which included responsibility for the Second
Life user community.  Both the Second Life and Wikimedia communities
are known for being iconoclastic and independent of spirit – nobody is
exactly like us, LOL, but I think that Cyn's experience at Second Life
will nonetheless help equip her to do well in our world :-)

And, Linden is pretty much identical in age to the Wikimedia
Foundation, and went through a massive growth spurt during Cyn's time
there, which has I think enabled her to understand and navigate the
challenges and opportunities that come with growth and change. She has
done lots of recruiting, including outside the United States: during
her time at Linden she hired in the UK, Germany, Australia, the
Netherlands, France, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Korea and Singapore.
She also incorporated an outsourced group in Newcastle, and was the
executive sponsor of Linden's Brighton office.  And, she worked with
other Linden executives to develop Linden's internal culture,
including its employee and mentorship programs.

Prior to Linden, Cyn worked in museums: first at the Santa Barbara
Museum of Natural History where she worked with the Anthropology
department and managed the retail operations, followed by running the
retail organizations (including managing both paid staff and
volunteers) at the Portland Art Museum and the San Jose Museum of Art.
Cyn has a bachelor's degree in cultural anthropology from the
University of California (Santa Barbara). While at Linden she
developed an interest in helping organizations focus on individual
empowerment and collaboration, and she's now about to receive a
master's degree in organizational psychology from The Chicago School
of Professional Psychology.

I am delighted Cyn will be joining us: please help me welcome her. But
-- she doesn't yet have a Wikimedia e-mail address, and she's not yet
subscribed to our mailing lists. So maybe wait for Monday :-)

I'd also like to take a second to thank the people who helped with the
hiring process --- including Erik, Veronique, Barry, Danese, Zack,
Daniel, Jay, Bill, Tomasz, Sal Giambanco of the Omidyar Network and HR
consultant Jane Creech. And of course my thanks to our recruitment
firm m|Oppenheim, who –as always-- did a terrific job.

I also want to particularly thank Veronique, who's been handling the
HR portfolio, with Daniel, to date. When Veronique first joined us, a
lot of HR basics were missing -- such as health insurance and a
retirement savings plan, vacation allotments, and procedures for
hiring staff and evaluating performance. Veronique has done a great
job looking after the Wikimedia Foundation's HR needs, and I'm
grateful to her for it.



Sue Gardner
Executive Director
Wikimedia Foundation

415 839 6885 office
415 816 9967 cell

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