Meet the Candidates: James Bousquet

This entry is being posted on behalf of James Bousquet, candidate for Treasurer in the 2019 STC election. More information about James can be found on his STC election page. You can ask questions of the candidates on the STC Election Forum. The election begins 25 February and runs through 11 March.

My name is James Bousquet, and I am seeking a second term as STC Treasurer.

Thorough and analytical

After 14 years in software engineering, I took up technical communication 12 years ago as a technical writer. I have been a customer trainer for almost six years, first at a healthcare informatics company and now at a healthcare industry automation manufacturer. Prior to becoming a professional engineer, I was the administrator of a medical research facility, where my job included not only managing the facility’s finances, but also tracking and reporting on the research funds of four professors.

Values continuing education

I have wide-ranging interests and am a strong proponent of lifelong learning, regardless of whether to sharpen work skills or for its own intrinsic rewards. I followed up my biology degree with an honors program in physiology, and later received another degree in systems design engineering. Since then I have continued to study various topics—from programming languages to human relations to accounting and, of course, tech writing and training adults—to address ongoing work needs and my own interests.

Experienced with STC service, not-for-profit, financial roles

I have been a member of STC from the time I transitioned to technical writing, starting as a contractor and then working full-time. With prior experience in not-for-profit incorporation, as a board member and president of a community band, and in making successful applications for government funding, I was instrumental in the legal incorporation of my local STC chapter and in drafting its bylaws. I was treasurer of the Southwestern Ontario Chapter for four years and chapter president for another two years. I was also treasurer of the Instructional Design and Learning (IDL) SIG for three years.

I began serving at the Society level on the Community Affairs Committee (CAC) SIG Outreach Team and on the 2017 Community Budget Review Committee. As the STC Treasurer since May 2017, I interpret financial reports, liaise with STC staff, curate key information, report back to the rest of the Board, and make sure everyone understands. I also chair the Finance and Investment Committee and the Community Budget Review Committee, and I work with other Board members on special projects.

Key priorities

Memberships still bring in over half of the Society’s annual revenue and enable us to provide such valuable programming and education opportunities. This continues to be an exciting time for technical communication, as various specializations continue to change and move forward. STC must move with them to attract, engage, and provide value to members—for whom the Society exists—and to help foster our profession. STC has had to make significant cuts to expenses in the last couple of years. We’re at a point where we need to focus on our vision and values, and to find ways to continue as a healthy organization.

To bolster much-needed STC revenue, we have to consider that practitioners need a dependable source for continued professional development to stay current and to progress in our careers as we take on more senior work roles and move into management. Providing access to exceptional, relevant educational opportunities that enable us to stay at the front of the curve and support our professional worth is key.

Communities provide much of the value of STC membership through education and social events. Communities have an obligation to support their members, and in turn the Society needs to support communities.

I see my involvement in STC as a means to help others succeed and as a way to give back to the organization that helps me in my career. I welcome this opportunity to continue serving the Society as Treasurer. Thank you for your continued support of STC.

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