You may know Ruby Central as the host of RubyConf and RailsConf over the past two decades, but in reality, we do so much more. At a panel discussion during RubyConf 2022, the Ruby Central board laid out the organization's growing role in the Ruby community over time – from the creation of RubyGems to its efforts to improve diversity and inclusion, as well as its growing role in supporting the open source work Rubyists rely on to maintain core infrastructure like Bundler.

In 2023, as we emerge from the initial shock of the COVID pandemic, we have a new team, an updated conference structure, and even more ambitious goals. Ruby Central is excited to be in a position to expand its support of Rubyists even further and “help the community thrive both technically and non-technically,” as board member Allison McMillan put it. For example, on the infrastructure side, the team is excited to have identified new sources of funding to support Ruby maintainers in providing more robust and sustainable maintenance of RubyGems and Bundler. When it comes to supporting new Ruby community members, we have been enhancing our Scholars and Guides program to provide more ongoing support for underrepresented community members interested in learning the Ruby programming language.

"And this is only the first step,” says McMillan. “Ideally, in years to come, we'll be expanding additional educational offerings and support, more globally-inclusive events and activities, and connecting more folks in the community with one another to maintain the close-knit feeling that the ruby community has historically had."

Here are a few of the ideas we’re excited about as we look to the future:

  • Even more sources of funding
  • Community building and continuity between conferences, including:
    • expanding the Scholar and Guides program to potentially be year round
    • regional conferences
    • grant programs
  • Continuing education - finding ways to help new members join the community outside of the conferences
  • Connecting to local Ruby communities
  • Creating a more robust CFP pipeline: coaching, mentorship, speaker training
  • We also look forward to collaborating with you and the community on what you want to see from Ruby Central!

Help shape Ruby Central’s role in the community

As always, we want to hear from you! If you’re interested in making your voice heard as Ruby Central grows, here are a few ways to connect with us:

  • Reach out directly to our leadership team.
  • Come talk to the board at conferences. We’d love to say hi and hear what you want us to keep doing and what you didn’t like. At RailsConf 2023 we’ll be carving out space specifically for you to get some face time with us at the RailsConf check-in booth and during the Ruby Central town hall on Tuesday April 25th at 1:30 pm.
  • Fill out the conference surveys you receive and give us your honest feedback.

Also, stay tuned for opportunities to get involved behind the scenes at Ruby Central.

We look forward to collaborating with you to build the future for the Ruby community that we all want to see.