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Individual Member Profile


Sean McGinnis

Date Joined
June 11, 2014

Huawei From 2017-04-10 (Current)
Dell Inc. From 2015-09-14 To 2017-04-07
Dell, Inc. From 2002-12-02 To 2017-04-07
Statement of Interest

General involvement and cinder.




Sean is a Principal Architect in Huawei’s Cloud Open Source Development Team involved in OpenStack and other Cloud related open source projects with a focus on storage related integration.


Sean is currently a member of the OpenStack Technical Committee (TC), the Project Team Lead (PTL) for the Release Management team, the former PTL of the Cinder block storage project, and a core in a number of OpenStack projects. He also serves as the Community and Release Manager for the Linux Foundation OpenSDS project and is an open source liaison with the Storage Network Industry Association (SNIA).


OpenStack Summit Presentations
  • We Integrated K8s, What is Next?
  • Operators Documents ("ops docs") working session
  • Release Team - Project Onboarding
Vancouver, BC Sydney Boston Barcelona, Spain Austin Tokyo Vancouver

Speaker Profile:


Sean is a candidate in the January 2019 Board Election .


What is your relationship to OpenStack, and why is its success important to you? What would you say is your biggest contribution to OpenStack's success to date?


I started getting involved in OpenStack around the Icehouse release, right in the middle of the peak of the hype cycle. My participation started as an engineer for a storage vendor figuring out how to enable our storage device to be used in an OpenStack cloud deployment, but quickly grew from there as I became more involved and more impressed by the community, ecosystem, and the capabilities that OpenStack was creating.


I’m proud to have led the Cinder team through several cycles, and looking back at those early days as a confused and overwhelmed Cinder driver developer, I feel like I’ve come to know OpenStack and a lot of the varied and sometimes competing pressures we have coming in that are shaping the direction of OpenStack.


We are well past those days of quick growth and overly optimistic exuberance, but I am still impressed by the activity coming out of this smaller but more focused community. I feel that while we have had to adjust a lot of expectations and there is a lot of nostalgia, this has forced us to better focus on what needs to be done and what is important. I still see a long and exciting future for OpenStack and the new projects coming up under the expanded scope of the OpenStack Foundation.


Describe your experience with other non profits or serving as a board member. How does your experience prepare you for the role of a board member?


Over the years I have volunteered as a technical resource for various non-profits supporting childhood education. But my biggest and most eye opening involvement has been being twice elected as a member of an urban neighborhood board. This position allowed me to learn and experience as a representative of various constituent interests working across city and state organizations.


While a board member I was part of a small workgroup enlisting volunteer legal services to update aging bylaws. We worked with state and local grants to provide resources and improvements for the community. There were a lot of good opportunities to find ways to be fiscally conservative while identifying the biggest or most important aspects of these we could provide with our limited time and budget.

I see a lot of parallels with this neighborhood experience and the work that needs to be done on the OpenStack Board of Directors. We have a limited amount of funding coming in and it is not always guaranteed that we will get what we expect. Finding ways to effectively and efficiently apply those funds and engineering resources to make the biggest impact towards advancing our mission will be more and more important going forward.


What do you see as the Board's role in OpenStack's success?


As a group made up primarily of the vendors that are involved in OpenStack and cloud infrastructure and services, I see the board as an important resource that can influence the direction of OpenStack and various projects by putting focus on those areas that are critical to building capabilities that are identified through our collective insights into the market and the needs of our customers.


I also see the board as being important in encouraging the continuation of the Four Opens that have helped the community grow to the point it has so far and making sure future efforts have that as a foundation of the way they operate and grow.


There are ongoing challenges with shifting markets, competing or alternative technical implementations, and continuing reallocation of corporate engineering resources. The board is in an important position of having visibility across corporate and customer needs, development challenges, and everything that provides the broader picture needed to feed into and help direct focus to important issues and needs.


What do you think the top priority of the Board should be over the next year?


I think now is the beginning of a unique chapter in the lifetime of OpenStack. The newly expanded scope of the OpenStack Foundation is bringing new and exciting changes to the community as well as a new set of challenges and concerns.


Over the next year, I think the Board will need to really think about the direction the community is headed and how our decisions now for both OpenStack and the additional new projects will impact the community as a whole. We have a lot of potential for some really good synergy and growth to meet the goal of a truly open infrastructure. We also have some risks that some of these changes will bring about unintended consequences and impact developer and end user satisfaction.


It’s really an exciting time for the Board and for the community as a whole, and I feel I could provide valuable and unique experience to help shape the future of OpenStack and open infrastructure.

Sean has already been nominated by:

  • Chris Dent
  • Jay Bryant
  • Amy Marrich
  • Chris Morgan
  • Erik McCormick
  • Melvin Hillsman
  • Fred LI
  • Egle Sigler
  • Andreas Jaeger
  • ChangBo Guo