The Conference Coordinator acts as a liaison between staff, contractors, volunteers and the local teams who plan, organize, and run WMF-funded movement events, most prominently Wikimania. The role of the Conference Coordinator is to facilitate and support the work of the event organizers, to serve as primary point of contact for the Wikimedia Foundation, and to ensure delivery of Wikimania and continuity over time, including documentation and knowledge-transfer. The ideal candidate has a background in event organizing, facilitation skills

We’d like you to do these things:   

A primary responsibility of the Conference Coordinator is to provide a point of contact to ensure accountability between the Wikimedia Foundation and volunteer organizers. The activities related to this responsibility may include the following.

Work with the host teams, contractors, and WMF staff to:

Maintain an overall schedule that clarifies work to be done, who is responsible, and dates due for all items.  

Budget and track spending: Participate in budgeting and forecasting expenses by providing estimates on spending for major conference costs; create and maintain expense spreadsheet for conference; code invoices for payment and request invoices if not received in timely manner; track expenses and compare with budget and financial reports.

Facilitate the bidding, review, negotiation, and finalization of contracts for venues and vendors.

Scope, recruit, and supervise contractors to handle logistics of events. Hire and supervise temporary staff as needed.  

Identify potential sponsors, support volunteers enlisting them, and maintain relations year to year.  

Oversee with the Wikimania Steering Committee and WMF management to set policy and procedures for selecting committees and venues for conferences.   

Encourage community members to host and assist with proposals.

Review host finalists and make recommendation to WMF on approval.

Conduct site visits to local host as needed.

Ensure with the logistics team/contractors that all requirements for function/meeting space are met, including: A-V, internet connectivity, registration, printing and signage, accommodations, ADA compliance, security, friendly-space policy, transportation and catering. Work with WMF on contracts for same as needed.

Coordinate between stakeholders to ensure that an event registration system, visa application process, database, web site, and other software is in place to enhance registration, logistics, and promotion.

Administer scholarship program. Recruit, facilitate, and advise the scholarship committee to set selection criteria. Evaluate program criteria as needed. Implement scholarships by assisting awardees to obtain visas, funds, and travel and accommodation arrangements.    

Support and highlight volunteer efforts, provide continuity year to year about conference processes and coaching or mentorship to host teams where needed so that volunteer skills and capacity continue to be built.

Coordinate Wikimedian of the Year nomination and selection process.

Facilitate and work collaboratively with volunteers to provide advice, guidance, and support for the local teams.  

Work with WMF staff to:

Build and iterate on a strategic plan for movement events to ensure these gatherings provide effective support to Wikimedia communities.

Act as a liaison to the organizing teams and regularly communicate status of conference planning efforts. Route requests to appropriate staff.

With logistics team, ensure that all WMF-related side meetings at conference venue are assigned meeting rooms and catered.

Annually review requirements based on previous years' conference activities and attendance trends and update and revise as necessary

Arrange for a post-event analysis with WMF and stakeholders to determine what worked and didn’t, gather recommendations for future years, and put together documentation to help guide subsequent teams

Assist with logistics and support other WMF-funded events to be determined, including technical events and others.

We’d like you to have these skills:

  • 2+ years experience in all aspects of meeting management
  • Strong logistical skills and project management skills as well as strong negotiation skills and vendor relationships
  •  Detail-oriented with excellent organizational skills
  • Proven history delivering commitments on deadline
  • Comfortable working in a highly transparent, collaborative environment
  • Ability and willingness to travel several times a year for event work
  • Ability to work outside of normal working hours to accommodate availability and a variety of timezones of volunteers, contractors, etc.
  • Proven ability to resolve conflicts and ambiguous issues to the satisfaction of stakeholders

And it would be even more awesome if you have this:

  • Demonstrated experience in building positive relationships with volunteer

  • Experience working in a facilitation or advisory role with a variety of stakeholders

  • Demonstrated experience in team coordination, especially with volunteers and vendors in various time-zones

  • Global experience and ability to communicate in language(s) other than English a plus

  • Experience working volunteers and mission driven organization(s)

  •  Prior experience working with visas and travel booking is a plus, as is experience with Wikimania or other free-/open- culture events

  • Experience organizing events in different countries.

  • A strong commitment to the mission of Wikimedia movement and the values of the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is... 

...the nonprofit organization that hosts and operates Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. We believe that everyone has the potential to contribute something to our shared knowledge, and that everyone should be able to access that knowledge, free of interference. We host the Wikimedia projects, build software experiences for reading, contributing, and sharing Wikimedia content, support the volunteer communities and partners who make Wikimedia possible, and advocate for policies that enable Wikimedia and free knowledge to thrive. The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive financial support from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts. The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

The Wikimedia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer, and we encourage people with a diverse range of backgrounds to apply

Benefits & Perks *

  • Fully paid medical, dental and vision coverage for employees and their eligible families (yes, fully paid premiums!)
  • The Wellness Program provides reimbursement for mind, body and soul activities such as fitness memberships, baby sitting, continuing education and much more
  • The 401(k) retirement plan offers matched contributions at 4% of annual salary
  • Flexible and generous time off - vacation, sick and volunteer days, plus 19 paid holidays - including the last week of the year.
  • Family friendly! 100% paid new parent leave for seven weeks plus an additional five weeks for pregnancy, flexible options to phase back in after leave, fully equipped lactation room.
  • For those emergency moments - long and short term disability, life insurance (2x salary) and an employee assistance program
  • Pre-tax savings plans for health care, child care, elder care, public transportation and parking expenses
  • Telecommuting and flexible work schedules available
  • Appropriate fuel for thinking and coding (aka, a pantry full of treats) and monthly massages to help staff relax
  • Great colleagues - diverse staff and contractors speaking dozens of languages from around the world, fantastic intellectual discourse, mission-driven and intensely passionate people

* for benefits eligible staff, benefits may vary by location

More information



Annual Report - 2017

Wikimedia 2030

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