Ada Initiative news, May 2012

AdaCamp DC update

Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. by Bernt Rostad

by Bernt Rostad

AdaCamp DC, on July 10–11, 2012, is getting very close! Our travel funding recipients have been notified and most other applicants have also received a decision about attending.

AdaCamp DC sponsors who signed on during May include:

We presently have around 90 confirmed attendees. Applications to attend are still open and will close on June 15.

Mary returns!

Mary submitted her PhD thesis for examination at the end of May and has returned to the Ada Initiative on her former schedule of two days a week. It’s especially good to have two program staff on board as we look forward to holding AdaCamp DC in July and then launching other projects later in the year.

Tax exempt in the U.S.

In mid-May, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) granted the Ada Initiative federal tax exempt status in the United States, back-dated to our date of incorporation, March 18, 2011. This is the culmination of a lot of work in 2011, and enables us to accept tax deductible donations from U.S. taxpayers and to use many services only available to 501(c)3 tax-exempt organisations. It also means that donors can contribute to the Ada Initiative confident that their donations will be used for charitable purposes.

All donors who donated prior to May 14 2012 should now have received an updated email receipt suitable for claiming a U.S. tax deduction; if you haven’t received your updated receipt, please contact All new donations will be acknowledged with an appropriate email receipt automatically immediately after the donation is processed.

If your employer matches employee donations to tax-exempt 501(c)3 organisations, your receipt for any 2011 donation may still be eligible for employer matching, and we encourage you to submit it through your employer’s system.

Consulting with organizations

Over the last year and a half, the Ada Initiative has given free consulting advice on making women feel more welcome to several organizations, including the Wikimedia Foundation, the Mozilla Foundation, OReilly, Google, the Linux Foundation, and Linux Australia. Since your donations make this work possible, we want to tell you more about the impact our work had.

Ada Initiative advisors in the news

Firefox Release Engineering, co-authored by Lukas Blakk, appeared in The Architecture of Open Source Applications.

Selena Deckelmann was an interviewee for a Women in Tech segment on Think Out Loud, and her company’s product was featured in Forbes.

Outgoing advisors

We farewelled Mitchell Baker, John Ferlito, and Sulamita Garcia from our advisory board this month after their contributions to our first year of operation. The Ada Initiative is committed to both rotating new ideas and perspectives into our work, and to preventing volunteer burnout, and thus we periodically poll our board of advisors and ask who is ready to step down for a while.

Thank you again to Mitchell, John and Sulamita for your contributions to the Ada Initiative in our first year!

Upcoming appearances

  • July 10–11, 2012: Mary and Valerie will both be attending AdaCamp DC.
  • July 12–14, 2012: Mary and Valerie will both be attending Wikimania 2012‘s main program.

Upcoming events for women in open technology and culture

See our calendar for a full listing, and submit any additional events to

Sponsorship opportunities

Instant sponsorship of the Ada Initiative is available through our Venture Philanthropist sponsorship program for sponsorship amounts between $2000 and $9999 (USD) with a minimum of hassle. Other donations of $500 or more are eligible for Supporting Sponsor recognition.

Contact for larger sponsorship packages.