We're looking for the next generation of Sacramento civic tech leaders

Dec 26, 2016 • Joel Riphagen

You can help build the civic tech community in Sacramento; no tech experience is necessary. Here’s how!

Code for Sacramento began in 2012 as a group of volunteers, trying to build technology for Sacramentans, by Sacramentans. Since then, a lot of amazing things have happened, culminating with a $50,000 RAILS grant from the City of Sacramento in late 2016. As a result, our Code for Sacramento “civic hacking brigade” is transforming from a bunch of volunteers ordering a pizza to a non-profit organization dedicated to developing technology to make our community better, as well as supporting the larger civic technology community around us. This will require creating a leadership team to broaden our impact.

With all this change, we need new ideas and new people to contribute their time to keep us moving in the right direction. And we need your help.

Saved by the Brigade: The New Class

We are looking for people to make a one year commitment to become part of Code for Sacramento’s leadership team. We’ve got a number of roles and responsibilities we need help with, and these can be divided among responsible parties in a few different ways. Our two primary lead positions are Delivery and Community Engagement; we absolutely need to bring a couple of folks on to fill these roles. We also need help with event organizing and communicating, and these roles can be filled by other individuals or teams, or they can be added to the roles of the two main leads. If you want to help, but don’t feel ready to take on a lead role, you can also let us know you’re interested in providing support in one or more of these areas. Read on for more detailed job descriptions.

Our grant from the City allows us to provide some compensation for some of this work. Specifically, the Delivery and Community Engagement leads can be paid for up to half a day’s work each week at a rate of $40 per hour. Additional opportunities for work and compensation may arise as we run hackathons and other events and find opportunities to contract with government. However, know that you’re signing on for a job that compensates primarily in the knowledge that you’ve helped your community. But even unpaid, these roles will look great on a resume!

What you’ll get to do:

  • Develop valuable leadership and management skills, building and leading a team in your functional area
  • Own a functional area of Code for Sacramento operations
  • Work closely with the executive director to define outcomes aligned with strategic initiatives
  • Work with a team of smart, passionate individuals committed to improving Sacramento
  • Help support the growing Sacramento tech community
  • Create processes and infrastructure that will shape the future of Code for Sacramento

What we’ll ask from you:

  • 1-year commitment through the end of December 2017
  • Participate in leadership team strategic planning meetings
  • Provide monthly update to the Executive Director
  • Regularly attend weekly hack nights and larger Code for Sacramento events
  • Reliably support team members and drive outcomes

Are you interested? Great! Please let us know by filling out this quick form before Monday, January 16, 2017!

Again, thanks for your interest! We’re excited to hear from you. If you have questions or thoughts, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Code for Sacramento Lead Roles

Delivery Lead: The What

Many of our members have great ideas for projects, but often those ideas can stagnate without the right combination of skills, partnership, and organization. The Delivery Lead advises maintainers on how to thoughtfully advance their project through development stages to create a truly impactful product. He/She is also responsible for managing projects that Code for Sacramento itself undertakes in conjunction with (and potentially under contract with) government and community partners. The person in this role needs to have a general knowledge of all active projects and communicate regularly with project maintainers. For this position, a person should be well-organized, proactive in communicating, and maintain a general knowledge of tech processes.

Points of ownership include (but are not limited to):

  • Defining strategy for project development standards and processes
  • Supporting teams and projects as they grow
  • Managing Code for Sacramento projects
  • Collecting problem statements from partner organizations
  • Working closely with the Community Engagement Lead to pair members with appropriate projects

Community Engagement Lead: The Who

As a volunteer-based group, it’s important to provide our members with a positive, fulfilling experience. Civic innovation is driven by engaged individuals, and our role is to bring those people together to make real change happen. The Community Engagement Lead focuses on creating value for brigade members and growing the community. Ideally, the person in this role works very well with all personality types, can effectively articulate the mission of Code for Sacramento, and holds a general knowledge of the civic tech community in the larger Sacramento context.

Points of ownership include (but are not limited to):

  • Recruiting new members and retaining current members
  • Creating an on-boarding process for new community members
  • Communicating with newcomers and working closely with the Delivery Lead to match skills with project needs
  • Identify member goals at all levels and helping members achieve those goals

Events: The When and Where

Between weekly hack nights, larger thematic hackathons, collaborative programming, and conferences, we have a lot of events (often simultaneously). For a seamless experience, we need help with event logistics and planning, including catering, location, materials and setup, participant experience, etc. Our current plan is to divide this role up among members of the core team, so that each person is responsible for a fraction of our events. We welcome the interest of outgoing, personable individuals to take on all or a portion of this workload.

Points of ownership include (but are not limited to):

  • Arranging details of weekly hack night
  • Finding and coordinating with hack night speakers
  • Assisting with logistics of hackathon events; oversee schedule; secure space for events
  • Communicate with sponsors regarding food/drinks; set up space with refreshments, working materials, promo materials

Communications: The Why

At Code for Sacramento, we do a lot of cool stuff. The doing part is easy and fun, but the telling part isn’t so obvious. We can always use help in artfully telling the story of our community. This means strategizing marketing/public relations, documenting member projects and efforts, soliciting and interacting with press, and establishing a metrics structure. For this role, the right match is someone strongly interested in crafting narratives, having a sense of interactive marketing practices, and confidently representing Code for Sacramento.

Points of ownership include (but are not limited to):

  • Defining communications strategy at large
  • Telling the Code for Sacramento story and project stories
  • Engaging the community
  • Generating original content to demonstrate impact
  • Promoting events and projects as needed

To indicate your interest in any of these roles, please fill out this quick form before Monday, January 16, 2017!

About Code for Sacramento

Code for Sacramento is a volunteer-driven Code for America Brigade, a group of civic hackers (designers, developers, data scientists, urbanists and community organizers) who contribute our talents toward improving the way our community interacts with local government by advocating for open data and using it to create apps and shared resources. We meet every Wednesday night at The Urban Hive or the Hacker Lab in midtown Sacramento.

Code for Sacramento is fiscally sponsored by the I/O Labs Foundation, a California 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.