Leadership Interviews: Luca Marzo
By its very nature, the Joomla board and structure is in permanent change - but we can find one constant: Luca Marzo, who is starting his fourth term as Secretary of OSM.
Within the Italian community, Luca became part of Joomla in 2007. He has served as Forum Moderator and as part of the organization of JoomlaDay, Italy.
In addition to his role as an officer, Luca has served and continues to serve on several teams and in many roles. He’s served on the Joomla! Extensions Directory Team to the Joomla! Certification Program, and from the Trademark Team to the Compliance Team.
This is your fourth term as Secretary, thank you! How do you manage to stay enthusiastic?
First of all, thank you, Andrea, for this interview. I’m not really used to interviews, but I’m happy to answer your questions. My fourth term as Secretary started only a few days ago, on March 23. Let me say that I’m proud to have the opportunity to serve in such a leadership position. I will continue doing my best to fulfil all obligations and responsibilities connected with this role.
The reason I’m able to keep my enthusiasm across the years is because I like Joomla and my role duties. I enjoy giving back to Joomla and its community. When I succeed in something for Joomla, I feel deeply happy and proud.
You are involved in almost every department or team. Is this an advantage or a hindrance?
My involvement list is long, but it has been reduced over time. I like being helpful, or at least, that’s my intention. Being involved in many teams is an advantage for me as an officer. Working closely with each team gives me a bigger picture of the current situations within the teams and departments. I can direct my attention and energy to the areas where there is an additional need.
As a board member, I can propose and support actions toward teams and initiatives that need a higher level of support. Also, being deeply involved in many different areas helps me serve as the “glue” between teams and departments, breaking down silos and facilitating collaboration.
Do you have any pending goals to add to the new goals you’ve made for this term?
As Secretary, my main statutory goal is to keep the organization compliant with the rules, either internal (bylaws, policies, etc.) or external (US law, federal laws, etc.). Meanwhile, I try to support the Board in containing costs, defining new policies and procedures, and handling the elections, etc. I will continue doing the best job I can during my tenure.
Although some readers already know this, I’m very happy to announce that OSM received a $10,000 USD grant from Amazon for AWS. I submitted the grant request some weeks ago. I’m also pleased to report that I have helped the organization reduce operating costs this year.
How have you handled the successive changes on the board during your tenure?
I have had the privilege to be on the Board since the new structure became effective. First, being elected just for one week as the Program Department Coordinator, and then nominated by Sandra Decoux and Marc Antoine Thevenet for the Secretary position -- which I was elected to a few days later.
During the first term, it was essential that the whole Board learn the new rules and the new structure. I would like to publicly thank Ken Crowder, from the Transition Team, who was a lighthouse for me. Ken took the time to explain the processes and help me to understand the Bylaws.
During my tenure, I’ve had to learn and understand the Bylaws. But more than merely understanding, we had to know how to amend the Bylaws (we’ve had to amend them several times already). The amendments that have been required were to deal with the election processes, and so on.
I have had the privilege to serve with two Presidents (three, in a few weeks), three Vice Presidents, three Treasurers and many Board members. I’ve learned a lot from each and every one of them. From each individual, it’s been of great benefit for me to learn their approach, their expertise, and their devotion to the Project and the Community.
In my position, I was able to help them become acquainted with all of the duties for their work, and provide them with accounts, permissions, tools and all the information they needed to move forward. I am grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with each of them.
Is there anything we forgot to ask but should have asked you?
A question someone else asked me was: Why didn’t I propose myself for the President role?
My reason for not running for President is that it would not change the impact I have on the Project. Joomla has a flat Board, meaning that every Board member -- from the President to a Department Coordinator -- has the same weight and power. I can support the Project, have an impact, and proudly serve the Community, as Secretary.
Also, I still have a lot of Joomla business cards as Secretary from JWC 2017 -- so keeping the same role helps me distribute them. :)
Andrea, thank you for the interview. I’m happy for this opportunity to share a bit more about myself and my current role.