Author: Alan Houser
All members and friends of the STC Pittsburgh chapter can be proud! Pittsburgh chapter member Nicky Bleiel was re-elected to the Society for Technical Communication Board of Directors as a director-at-large. Nicky’s second term officially began on May 3, 2010 at the annual STC business meeting, held during the STC Summit in Dallas, Texas. Among five candidates for three open board seats, Nicky had the highest vote total. She ran for re-election with nearly 3 years experience on the STC Board of Directors, and endorsements from many prominent members of the Society. Nicky’s re-election is a historic event for the STC. Under previous Society by-laws, directors could serve only for a single three-year term; they could not run for re-election for consecutive terms. Under the by-law revision of 2009, the director-at-large term was shortened from three years to two, and directors were permitted to serve two consecutive terms. Nicky is the first director to run and win re-election under the revised Society by-laws. Nicky sought re-election to the STC Board of Directors out of her commitment to the Society and the profession. She says, “I think being a technical communicator is a fantastic career that requires a wide variety of skills and is never, ever boring. I ran for director to be a part of the effort to promote this profession.” The Society by-laws state that “The Board of Directors shall manage and direct the business and affairs of the Society in accordance with the Articles of Incorporation of the Society.” The Board of Directors meets at least once per month, usually by telephone conference, and interacts daily by email. In addition to her general duties as a Society Board member, Nicky is Board Liaison for the Society’s recognition efforts, which includes oversight of individual and community-level awards and honors. Nicky is the Lead Information Developer for ComponentOne Doc-To-Help and a Doc-To-Help trainer. She has 15 years of experience in technical communication; writing and designing information for software products in the documentation, media, industrial automation, simulation, and pharmaceutical industries. She has presented talks at the WritersUA, STC, tcworld, LavaCon, and DocTrain conferences on many topics, including embedded help, tools and technologies, user assistance design, single sourcing, wikis, Web 2.0, and convergence technical communication. Nicky is a past president of the STC Pittsburgh chapter. She earned a BA in Journalism from the Pennsylvania State University, where she was a member of the University Scholars Program and the Kappa Tau Alpha Honor Society. Nicky is bullish about the future of the Society. She says, “I think the future of the Society is strong. STC has so much to offer its members: Traditional opportunities include networking, education, mentorship, competitions, awards, and leadership. Non-traditional offerings include a virtual community on Facebook, the STC Notebook blog and Twitter. Both options make it possible for members to communicate, learn, be recognized, and find employment in many ways. And we are constantly working on new opportunities for STC members.” Nicky’s continued leadership at the STC international level is a statement of her dedication to the profession and is another proud event in the long, strong history of the Pittsburgh chapter. Congratulations, Nicky!