Announcing the Open Organization Ambassadors Program

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Here's what we know about communities:

Communities thrive on shared purpose, passion, and commitment. Communities can accomplish more than individuals. Communities require reciprocity.

Most of all, though, we know that communities consist of people.

That's why we're excited to announce the launch of the Open Organization Ambassadors Program at The program identifies and spotlights management thought leaders and members of the community who are particularly passionate about the management ideas Jim Whitehurst advances in his recent book, The Open Organization. Ambassadors are leaders guiding discussions of open organizational thinking. They're practitioners revamping their organizations the open source way, and they're evangelists recognized as some of the most vocal champions of open organizational principles.

Open Organization Ambassadors will help us think about ways we can adapt management to a 21st century context. In conversation with Jim, they'll shape a movement that will alter the ways we organize today. They'll continue to spread the word—both online and off.

The Open Organization Ambassadors

Four ambassadors have joined the program.

Jono Bacon
Jono Bacon Jono Bacon is a leading community manager, speaker, and author. Currently, he works as Senior Director of Community at the XPRIZE Foundation. Formerly, he was the Ubuntu Community Manager at Canonical, where he optimized and grew Ubuntu's global community. Find him on Twitter at: @jonobacon.
Rebecca Fernandez
Rebecca Fernandez Rebecca Fernandez is a Principal Employment Branding + Communications Specialist at Red Hat. Before that, she was a freelance business writer for five years—and before that, a copy writer at Red Hat. (They just couldn't be rid of her.) Rebecca is interested in open source and the intersection of the open source way with business management models.
Sam Knuth
Sam Knuth Sam Knuth leads the Customer Content Services team at Red Hat, which produces all of the documentation Red Hat provides for customers. The team strives to provide customers with the insights they need to be successful with open source technology in the enterprise.
Robin Muilwijk
Robin Muilwijk Robin Muilwijk has been an open source entrepreneur for ten years, and is still fighting the misconceptions that come with working in the industry. He says the toughest part of doing this is promoting the open source way of doing business. At, Robin is a frequent contributor—he recently wrote Building a scalable open source business model in the 90sand consistently adds insightful commentary to others' articles. He has earned the role of a comment gardner for the site, working to keep spammers at bay and our conversations of high quality.

We know one more thing about communities: They're unpredictable.

As we launch the ambassadors program, we don't know where our ambassadors will lead us any more than they do. Only continued conversation about an important book can guide us.

We're ready to continue that conversation.

If you're interested in joining the movement, contact me. I'll be organizing and leading our community's efforts.

A note of thanks

I would like to thank each of our ambassadors—Jono Bacon, Rebecca Fernandez, Sam Knuth, and Robin Muilwijk—not only for reviewing program drafts, but also for joining us on this adventure. I would also like to thank Kristina Hoeppner and Brook Manville for their extensive feedback about the program and what it could be. Each of you has improved the program dramatically—before it even launched. Last (but not least), I need to thank Bryan Behrenshausen, who put together the program's original framework and has been an amazing help in getting us to this point.

Jason Hibbets is a Community Director at Red Hat with the Digital Communities team. He works with the Enable Architect, Enable Sysadmin, Enterprisers Project, and community publications.

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