2014 marks my 15th year as a professional in the Game Industry. How time flies! Nearly my entire career, I’ve been a volunteer for IGDA. I was advised by the late Erick Wujcik that being a member of the (then) CGDA was the responsibility of all developers. He told me it was our obligation to “pay forward” the help we receive throughout our careers. I joined up and tried to help as much as I could to honor Erick’s advice and his memory.
I’m very proud of the things that the IGDA has been able to accomplish during its first 20 years. Thousands of lives have been touched and improved by the hard work of countless volunteers around the world. It would be very easy to be satisfied with the fruits of those labors, but in truth it’s not enough.
We are a young industry full of bright and creative minds. The fact that we make so many poor choices is baffling at times. It’s time for our industry to define ourselves through bold choices and deliberate actions before the opportunity is permanently forfeited.
For as much as the IGDA has accomplished, there is still much yet to do. To be specific, there are two specific subjects that I believe require a massive shift in focus from the IGDA and its Membership immediately.
The IGDA needs to more actively combat racism in the game industry! We need to ask our Membership to publicly decry racism and to oppose it anywhere in our industry. We need our Industry Partners to also publicly align with our mission to stamp out this foul behavior anywhere it may be found.
The IGDA needs to actively fight against misogyny in the games industry! We need to provide education and training to arm our membership as to what steps to take to improve working conditions for women around the world. We need our Industry Partners to vocally oppose misogynistic behaviors on any level in their organizations and help provide resources to advance the cause of women in the game industry.
These causes are worthy of our time and focus. They represent some of the most important next steps in our Industry’s maturity. It is my sincere hope that we continue to see the IGDA’s leadership on these issues.
This month concludes my term as Board Chair. As I reflect upon my term, I’m personally humbled to have worked with the thousands of volunteers who make the IGDA operate. We’re blessed to have an outstanding Board of Directors and an amazing Executive Director in Kate Edwards.
The future is bright, let’s claim it together!