Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2017–18

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This report describes the activities of Wikimedia District of Columbia during Fiscal Year 2017–18, covering the period from October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018.


During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC program activity focused in two principal program areas: institutional partnership and grantmaking and sponsorship.

Institutional Partnership

Consistent with past program results, collaborative editing events, such as edit-a-thons and editing workshops, comprised the bulk of our institutional partnership program activity. Over the course of the fiscal year, Wikimedia DC supported a total of 32 events (76% of our target) in partnership with 34 institutional partners (136% of our target). Of these 32 events, 25 were aimed at improving diversity, representing 61% of the total activity in the program and more than 200% of our target.

Our institutional partners included a broad spectrum of cultural, academic, and government institutions, professional associations, non-governmental organizations, and other groups:

The partner institutions included 15 new partners, for whom the collaboration marked their first engagement with Wikimedia DC, and often with the Wikimedia movement in general; these partners are marked with stars in the list above. Our success in engaging new partners was due in large part to the effective work of our Institutional Partnerships Manager, who was able to systematically identify, contact, and develop partnerships with a spectrum of institutions which had not otherwise engaged with the Wikimedia movement.

Training and Support

2018 Wikimedia Leadership Boot Camp attendees with David Ferriero, Archivist of the United States

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC hosted the 2018 Wikimedia Leadership Boot Camp. Organized in collaboration with the National Archives and Records Administration, the three-day event included sessions across a spectrum of topics, including train-the-trainer, community leadership, event organizing and planning, institutional outreach, grants, online tools, risk management, and safe space policies. Attendees included invited 12 trainee participants and 16 presenters, including chapter leadership, Wikimedia Foundation staff, and community program organizers.

Content Development

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC was responsible for organizing the Wiki Science Competition 2017 in the United States. An international science photography competition, the Wiki Science Competition was first organized in Estonia, expanding in 2015 to all of Europe, and in 2017 to the rest of the world.

The United States competition received 1,180 contributions across five categories, including 818 general images, 66 images of people in science, 213 microscopy images, 47 non-photographic submissions, and 36 image sets containing 184 images. The jury selected five winners in each category to represent the United States at the international level. Of the 22 awardees, only six had previous contributions to Wikimedia Commons. In addition, the jury selected five submissions as "Jury's Choice" awards, each of which received a $200 prize from Wikimedia District of Columbia.

The jury for the competition included John P. Sadowski, member of the Wikimedia DC Board of Directors; Sandy Avila, Science Librarian, University of Central Florida; Esther Jackson, Public Services Librarian, New York Botanical Garden; Ryan McGrady, Community Engagement Manager, Wiki Education Foundation; Ian Ramjohn, Wikipedia Content Expert, Sciences, Wiki Education Foundation; and Laura Soito, Physical Sciences Librarian, University of New Mexico.

Organizational development


Julie Burton and Soraya L. Chemaly
Kevin Payravi

Wikimedia DC awarded its 2017 Distinguished Service Award to Soraya L. Chemaly and Julie Burton of the Women's Media Center for exemplary contributions to the advancement of public knowledge and the collection, development, and dissemination of educational content. The Women's Media Center has been an incredible partner for Wikimedia DC, organizing and hosting several outstanding events, supporting us through the development of the new Wikimedia strategic direction, and acting as advocates for the Wikimedia community as we built new partnerships. Soraya and Julie have consistently demonstrated an amazing commitment to the values of the Wikimedia movement, and have provided incredible support not only for our engagement with the Women's Media Center, but also for our institutional partnerships program as a whole.

Wikimedia DC awarded its 2017 Volunteer of the Year Award to Kevin Payravi for his dedication to the advancement of public knowledge and the collection, development, and dissemination of educational content. Kevin is a veteran Wikimedia volunteer and a recognized leader within the Wikimedia community in the United States. Having stepped up to spearhead the WikiConference North America 2017 organizing team, Kevin consistently demonstrated incredible energy, dedication, and skill, working closely with Wikimedia DC board members and volunteers to successfully design and implement a unique conference despite numerous uncertainties and challenges.


The Wikimedia DC Board of Directors held 5 meetings during the 2017–18 fiscal year, on October 8, 2017, December 2, 2017, February 18, 2018, June 17, 2018, and August 12, 2018.