openSUSE:Board election 2020 platform - Neal Gompa

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Note: This page is used by the candidate of the board election as a platform to show his views and answer some standard questions.

Introduction and Biography

Contact Details edit


Contact Details

  • Email: ngompa at
  • IRC nicks: Conan_Kudo, Pharaoh_Atem, King_InuYasha, Eighth_Doctor
  • Twitter: @Det_Conan_Kudo
  • Matrix:
  • Discord: @Conan Kudo (ニール・ゴンパ)#7057
  • My openSUSE Userpage

Hi, my name is Neal Gompa, and I live in Norwalk, Connecticut in the United States. By day, I'm a DevOps Engineer at Datto, Inc., but on my nights and weekends, I'm a Linux systems aficionado and FOSS developer. I've been using Linux since 2002, and I've been using openSUSE off-and-on since 2007. I have been a happy user and strong advocate for openSUSE Tumbleweed since 2015.

Within the openSUSE Project, I contribute in the following ways:

  • Packager: I spend the bulk of my efforts around maintaining a number of packages in openSUSE. Many of them I personally use or am involved with in the upstream project on behalf of openSUSE. I make it a point as a maintainer of a package in openSUSE to establish a relationship with the upstream project so that there is a positive connection from openSUSE to the broader open source community.
  • Developer: I actively contribute to a number of projects under the openSUSE banner, such as the Open Build Service and KIWI. I have also created projects aimed at improving the quality of the openSUSE distribution, such as rpm-config-SUSE.
  • SysAdmin: I am a member of the openSUSE Heroes and work with others in the Heroes team to not only maintain the infrastructure that supports the Project, but also improve it so that the community is able to do even greater things with a fully Free Software platform.

It is no secret that I am involved in a number of Linux distribution projects, not just openSUSE. However, I believe establishing strong bonds with our friends in other Linux distribution communities benefits openSUSE by allowing us to collaborate on shared efforts to improve the Linux platform as a whole for everyone. As the saying goes "a rising tide lifts all boats", I hope that I can bring the best ideas and technologies from other Linux communities into openSUSE and share with them the things that make openSUSE an awesome place to do great things.

At the end of the day, I'm just another person in the community trying to make the world a better place through improving openSUSE. I just hope I am successful in my efforts.


As a member of the openSUSE community, I'm fairly well-equipped to effect change throughout the Project, so why am I running for the board? To put it succinctly: I want to help strengthen the Project itself.

In the last few years, openSUSE has been quietly evolving and developing great tools and an even better Linux distribution. However, we have struggled in a number of key avenues:

  • Visibility: While individual community members are free and able to advocate for openSUSE, the Project itself lacks decent structure on how to make those efforts more effective. I've seen how much organizational support for marketing and advocacy supercharges these efforts in other projects, and I believe we can do the same in openSUSE.
  • Accountability: As a member of the openSUSE Heroes, I have observed that the Project's relationship to the primary Sponsor (SUSE) is more one-sided than I would like. Moreover, there are reasonable questions to the reliability of our infrastructure that I would like to be able to work with them to address so that the community is better supported to be as successful as they can be.
  • Responsibility: The Project is at a crossroads right now with the ongoing efforts to transition to ownership by an independent Foundation. There are a lot of moving parts involved on making this happen, and I believe that my experience with a variety of projects and governance models can help with us making good decisions on how to best set ourselves up for the future.

Why you should vote for me?

  • I have been an active community member in openSUSE and I believe my experience can help the Board serve the community better
  • I offer a unique perspective in the community as someone who is actively involved "everywhere"
  • I love working with the community and bringing new folks into our space
  • I make things happen :)


If you have any, please leave them below, you have my gratitude.

  • The group of volunteers united under the goal of revamping the openSUSE platform-wide documentation is glad to endorse Neil Gompa in this election. We believe Neil will be a strong asset to the future Board and will work with us to improve openSUSE for everyone.