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Identifying potential new committers, calling a vote for their recognition as a committer and processing the relevant documents are tasks to which the whole community can contribute.

Each project has a different approach to managing new committers. This page describes a common process found in many Apache projects. It also provides drafts for the various communications that are necessary.

Guidelines for assessing new candidates for committership

When voting, all PMC members need to make up their own minds as to whether a candidate should be approved to become a committer. They might search mailing lists and JIRA to see how the candidate interacts with others, and the contributions (code or doc patches, suggestions, engagement in conversation) they have made.

All new committers must adhere to the Apache Code of Conduct.

Each PMC may want to create their own supplemental committer guidelines; here are the Apache Forrest committer guidelines.

The following are some points to consider when assessing a candidate’s qualifications for committership.

Ability to work cooperatively with peers.

How do we evaluate?

Ability to be a mentor.

How do we evaluate?


How do we evaluate?


How do we evaluate?

Personal skill/ability

How do we evaluate?

New Committer Process

This section describes a typical Apache project’s process for handling the vote to add a new committer. Templates mentioned in the process appear later in this document.


  1. Call a vote (templates/committerVote.txt)
  2. Close the vote
  3. If the result is positive, invite the new committer (templates/committerInvite.txt)

If they accept, then:

  1. Accept the committer (templates/committerAccept.txt)
  2. Wait until we see that receipt of CLA is recorded
  3. Request creation of the committer account (template/committerCreate.txt)
    1. Wait until root says it is done
    2. PMC Chair enables svn and other access
    3. Add committer to the appropriate groups in JIRA and CWiki
  4. Notify the committer of completion (template/committerDone.txt)
  5. If committer is also to be a PMC member, PMC Chair sends email to board@ asking for acknowledgement of new PMC member (templates/email-member-ack.txt)
  6. Announce the new committer (template/committerAnnounce.txt)


We do the vote on the private@ mailing list to enable a frank discussion.

Start a separate [VOTE] thread for each new person. This makes it much easier to review the email archives.

We need to be sure that they are committed people with whom we can work. They will be our peers. We will have already observed that they are committed to the project and graceful toward users and other developers.

Don’t wait too long before proposing and don’t be too hasty. There is a trade-off and something about timeliness. A point is reached where it becomes obvious that we should invite them. This encourages them and keeps them enthusiastic. If we leave it too long, then we risk them becoming disillusioned.

On the private@ list we can each say exactly what we feel about each person, with no holds barred. Keep the discussion concise. The praise part can be done later in public. Keep in mind, however, that if the member becomes a PMC member later, they will have access to this discussion.

Let the Vote thread run for one week.

A positive result is achieved by Consensus Approval: at least 3 +1 votes and no vetoes.

Any veto must be accompanied by reasoning and the vetoer must be prepared to defend it. Other members can attempt to encourage them to change their mind.

New committers can be either quiet or active as they choose. If we find that certain people lapse and don’t ever contribute, then the project can take steps to retire them.

After a positive result, record the result on the PMC list with a [RESULT][VOTE] subject and then invite the candidate. We give candidates a chance to decline committership in private. They can post a reply to the PMC mailing list.

After we reach a decision on the private@ list, and after the steps above, we announce the new committer on the dev list. We can then each follow up with our praise in public.

Other notes about the process are available on the main Apache site.

Email Templates

Committer Vote Template

This is the email to commence a vote for a new committer. Some projects make committers PMC members automatically. If this is the case, merge this template with the following one (PMC Vote Template).

To: private@[PROJECT]
Subject: [VOTE] New committer: Jo Bloggs

[ add the reasons behind your nomination here ]

Voting ends one week from today, i.e. midnight UTC on YYYY-MM-DD

See voting guidelines at


PMC Vote Template

This is the email to commence a vote for a new PMC candidate. New PMC members need to be voted for by the existing PMC members and subsequently approved by the Board (or Incubator PMC for incubating projects).

To: private@[PROJECT]
Subject: [VOTE] New PMC candidate: Jo Bloggs

[ add the reasons behind your nomination here ]

Voting ends one week from today, i.e. midnight UTC on YYYY-MM-DD

See voting guidelines at

Close Vote

This email ends the vote and reports the result to the project.

To: private@[PROJECT].a.o
Subject: [RESULT] [VOTE] New committer (or PMC candidate): Jo Bloggs

The vote has now closed. The results are:

Binding Votes:


The vote is ***successful/not successful***

Board Approval of new PMC member


Committer Invite Template

This is the suggested invitation email to send to the newly elected committer, sent after a positive result from the vote for a new committer.

Cc: private@[PROJECT]
Subject: Invitation to become [PROJECT] committer: Jo Bloggs
Hello [invitee name],

The [Project] Project Management Committee (PMC) 
hereby offers you committer privileges to the project 
[as well as membership in the PMC]. These privileges are
offered on the understanding that you'll use them
reasonably and with common sense. We like to work on trust
rather than unnecessary constraints. 

Being a committer enables you to more easily make 
changes without needing to go through the patch 
submission process. [Being a PMC member enables you 
to guide the direction of the project.]

Being a committer does not require you to 
participate any more than you already do. It does 
tend to make one even more committed.  You will 
probably find that you spend more time here.

Of course, you can decline and instead remain as a 
contributor, participating as you do now.

A. This personal invitation is a chance for you to 
accept or decline in private.  Either way, please 
let us know in reply to the private@[PROJECT] 
address only.

B. If you accept, the next step is to register an iCLA:
    1. Details of the iCLA and the forms are found 
    through this link:

    2. Instructions for its completion and return to 
    the Secretary of the ASF are found at

    3. When you transmit the completed iCLA, request 
    to notify the Apache [Project] project and choose a 
    unique Apache ID. Look to see if your preferred 
    ID is already taken at
    This will allow the Secretary to notify the PMC 
    when your iCLA has been recorded.

When recording of your iCLA is noted, you will 
receive a follow-up message with the next steps for 
establishing you as a committer.

Committer Accept Template

This is the followup email after the new committer has accepted the invitation.

Cc: private@[PROJECT]
Subject: Re: invitation to become [PROJECT] committer

Welcome. Here are the next steps in becoming a project committer. After that we will make
an announcement to the [PROJECT]-dev list.

You need to send a Contributor License Agreement to the ASF.
Normally you would send an Individual CLA. If you also make
contributions done in work time or using work resources,
see the Corporate CLA. Ask us if you have any issues.

You need to choose a preferred ASF user name and alternatives.
In order to ensure it is available you can view a list of taken IDs at

Please notify us when you have submitted the CLA and by what means 
you did so. This will enable us to monitor its progress.

We will arrange for your Apache user account when the CLA has 
been recorded.

After that is done, please make followup replies to the [PROJECT]-dev list.
We generally discuss everything there and keep the
private@[PROJECT] list for occasional matters which must be private.

The developer section of the website describes roles within the ASF and provides other

The incubator also has some useful information for new committers
in incubating projects:

Just as before you became a committer, participation in any ASF community
requires adherence to the ASF Code of Conduct:

[PROJECT should insert its own guidelines here; if none are available,
 the Apache Forrest guidelines are available as a template.]

The Apache [PROJECT] PMC

Committer Account Creation

Follow the instructions here.

In summary:

If the ICLA identifies the project and a valid Apache ID, and the [RESULT][VOTE] message has been posted to the PMC private list, the account creation request is made by the secretary or assistant who files the ICLA.

Otherwise, the new account request should be made by the PMC Chair (or any ASF Member if the chair is unavailable).

The PMC chair needs to use the ASF New Account Request form to send a new account request. Members may use ASF New Account Request page.

For elections held on public lists, please supply the url. For private lists, you can use the Mail Search tool to locate the appropriate url.

Committer Announce Template

This is the email to announce the new committer to [PROJECT]-dev once the account has been created.

To: dev@[PROJECT]
Subject: new committer: ###Jo Bloggs

The Project Management Committee (PMC) for Apache [PROJECT]
has invited Jo Bloggs to become a committer and we are pleased 
to announce that they have accepted.

### add specific details here ###

Being a committer enables easier contribution to the
project since there is no need to go via the patch
submission process. This should enable better productivity.
A PMC member helps manage and guide the direction of the project.

Committer Done Template

After the committer account is established.

To: private@[PROJECT].a.o,
Subject: account request: ###Jo Bloggs

####, as you know, the ASF Infrastructure has set up your
committer account with the username '####'.

Please follow the instructions to set up your SSH,
svn password, svn configuration, email forwarding, etc.

[If your project automatically adds committers to the PMC]
Please subscribe to the [PROJECT] Project Management 
Committee mailing list private@[PROJECT]

You have commit access to specific sections of the
ASF repository, as follows:

[PROJECT] has various resources at:[PROJECT]

The general "committers" at:

You will probably need to 'svn switch" previous checkouts to now use https, 
for example:

svn switch --relocate[PROJECT][PROJECT]
If you have any questions during this phase, then please
see the following resources:

Apache developer's pages:
Incubator committer guide:

Naturally, if you don't understand anything be sure to ask us on the [PROJECT] dev mailing list. 
Documentation is maintained by volunteers and hence can be out-of-date and incomplete - of course
you can now help fix that.

A PMC member will announce your election to the dev list soon.