[ARIN-consult] ACSP Consultation 2022.2: Consultation on Elections and the Nomination Process

Adam Thompson athompso at athompso.net
Sat Feb 12 00:10:55 EST 2022

Scott, it sounds to me like you’ve restated what the original email said correctly, but the language is such that I’m not 100% positive, either!  I wish communications from ARIN used RFC vocabulary and style, stopped using passive voice, and stopped using conditional verb tenses except where actually required.  However, that’s not the subject under discussion.

This last year, we’ve seen that a good many people are quite unhappy with the current NomCom process(es), and in at least some cases, /prima facie/, seemingly with good cause.

The proposal sounds like a good step to me.  I don’t think it’s perfect, in fact I can already see that it’s not perfect.  Nonetheless, I don’t see any major blockers where I feel the need to argue *against* this change – I think it goes in the right direction, and the NomCom simultaneously is critical, needs to protected from too much change too rapidly (lest the elections turn into a farce), yet also needs SOME change applied to it ASAP.
I think the ARIN community needs to go through at least two or three nomination cycles with new rules to find out how they work and how they “feel” to both the [potential] candidates and the membership.
There is a small privacy concern, but IMHO anyone who’s uncomfortable with the possibility of publicly being known as someone who wasn’t the NomCom’s perfect candidate… probably shouldn’t be running for the board of an organization this public and transparent in the first place.  And if the NomCom still rejects someone out of hand, it’s still private… whether it should be or not?  I’m willing to take baby steps towards figuring that out.

I would also like to see the NomCom provide anonymized statistics covering all the steps, from #A people were submitted for consideration, #B were rejected due to <unable to qualify>, #C were qualified, #D were well-qualified, #E were recommended, etc., etc..  I don’t see this addressed either in the text or the accompanying PDF – have I missed something?

It’s disturbing to learn that ARIN has apparently had reports recommending these changes since 2010, and a second set of recommendations in 2018 - but it seemingly took a fair-sized uproar this year to do anything with that information.  Then, John (et al.), why did you pay for not one but two 3rd-party reports in the first place if they were just going to gather dust?  This isn’t ultimately material to the adoption of the recommendations, it just points out that they may be more overdue than the membership realized.


From: ARIN-consult <arin-consult-bounces at arin.net> On Behalf Of Scott Leibrand
Sent: Friday, February 11, 2022 9:48 PM
To: ARIN <info at arin.net>
Cc: ARIN-consult <arin-consult at arin.net>
Subject: Re: [ARIN-consult] ACSP Consultation 2022.2: Consultation on Elections and the Nomination Process

This looks like a very substantial improvement that addresses most of the issues and concerns raised by the community. Thanks for proposing such a substantial improvement.

But I am a bit unclear on the details of the tripartite (or is it quadripartite?) rating system.

Is this understanding correct?:
If the NomCom rates a candidate (for Board or AC) “Well Qualified”, “Qualified”, or “Qualifications not Demonstrated” on the weighted average of the criteria in the Board Guidance Letter, that candidate is added to the slate, and their rating and the reasons for that rating are published when the slate is announced. The NomCom can only classify a candidate as "Unable to Qualify” if there exists an objective reason for their inability to serve (such as unresolvable conflict of interest, documented misrepresentation, or past conviction of crime or fraud), in which case that candidate is not added to the slate, they are (privately) informed of that fact, and they can use the petition process if desired. If they petition, (I presume?) ARIN may publish a statement on why they were classified as Unable to Qualify.

Did I get all of that right? If so, I support these changes, but I would encourage you to clarify the process a bit to make it easier to understand without having to carefully re-read and cross-reference both the consultation and its FAQ multiple times. (Feel free to use my summary above if it's clear, correct, and useful.)


On Fri, Feb 11, 2022 at 11:37 AM ARIN <info at arin.net<mailto:info at arin.net>> wrote:
The Board of Trustees maintains authority over the scope, mission, and along with the President and Chief Executive Officer establishes ARIN’s strategic direction and fiscal oversight. The Board also has oversight authority of the nomination, appointment, and election of individuals to Board committees and similar roles.

Over the past two years, as part of its fiduciary duties, the ARIN Board of Trustees (“Board”) has undertaken a review of ARIN’s governance structures, including Elections and Nominations processes. As part of this effort, an independent, outside consultant was engaged to review ARIN’s governance structures and provide recommendations.

One recommendation that has arisen from this governance review is to make changes to the existing election and nomination processes. The proposed changes will ensure board independence, transparency, and impartiality.

Board Guidance Letter

• The Board Guidance Letter (for each of the Board of Trustees and the Advisory Council) contains "Highly Recommended" and "Recommended" attributes and assigns a weighting to each attribute.

• The evaluation of each candidate would be tied to the degree to which each attribute was satisfied.

Nomination Committee Selection

• The Nomination Committee (NomCom) has seven members in total, with the members serving staggered two-year terms to ensure continuity and succession planning. The NomCom Board members select non-board members via an open call for nominations, appointing two or three members per year to reach the total membership of seven. Up to two Advisory Council (AC) members can serve on the NomCom.

• The NomCom is chaired by a Board Member.


Anyone can self-nominate by completing the questionnaire for the position sought. Nominees must reside within the ARIN region.

Review of Potential Candidates

• The Nomination Committee (NomCom) would review nominees based on the Board Guidance Letter, responses to questionnaires, responses to third-party interviews (Board of Trustees only), material issues from background checks (Board of Trustees only) and the review of ARIN files, and other information available to the NomCom.

• The Board Guidance Letter defines "Highly Recommended" and "Recommended" attributes. The NomCom would classify each qualified nominee as "Well Qualified," "Qualified" or "Qualifications not Demonstrated" based on evaluation of these attributes, in a fashion like that used by the American Bar Association (ABA) Federal Judiciary process. All qualified nominees would be added to the slate as candidates for election. The reasons for classifications would be published when the slate is announced.

• The NomCom would evaluate each nominee on each weighted attribute to inform the classification process. Any nominee classified as “Unable to Qualify” would not be added to the slate.

• Nominee questionnaires would include questions about the attributes defined in the Board Guidance Letter.

• The NomCom would report on the total number of individuals assessed for the election cycle.

Background Check Process

The process is outlined in ARIN’s Election Processes document (Section V(e)) and remains unchanged.

ARIN’s GC and Sr. Director of HR & Administration (HR Director) will arrange for a third- party vendor to conduct background checks for selected nominees. ARIN’s GC and HR Director will review the reports for each nominee and determine if there are any material issues with their background. If any material issues are found, they will review the nature of the background issue with the nominee. If after consultation with the nominee, ARIN’s GC and HR Director still deems the issue as material, they will notify the nominee that the relevant information will be provided to the NomCom unless the nominee withdraws their candidacy. Relevant material information may include information, if any, from a former ARIN volunteer’s or former ARIN employee’s individual file. A nominee will be given the opportunity to provide a statement addressing the issue which will also be provided to the NomCom. If the nominee does not withdraw their candidacy, the relevant information including the nominee’s statement, if any, will be provided to the NomCom for consideration.

Board Proposal:

ARIN will make changes to the selection of the NomCom, the Nomination process, and the candidate review and rating system.

The proposed changes will ensure board independence, transparency, and impartiality. ARIN seeks community feedback on these proposed changes: https://www.arin.net/participate/community/acsp/consultations/2022/2022-2/

This consultation will remain open for 15 days.

An Appendix FAQ that further details the rationale for these changes and additional information is available at: https://www.arin.net/participate/community/acsp/consultations/2022/FAQAppendix_202202consult.pdf

Please provide comments to arin-consult at arin.net<mailto:arin-consult at arin.net>. You can subscribe to this mailing list at: http://lists.arin.net/mailman/listinfo/arin-consult.

Discussion on arin-consult at arin.net<mailto:arin-consult at arin.net> will close on 28 February 2022.


John Curran
President and CEO
American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN)

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