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Jericho “Dirge” Nordstrom

Home Forums MNFurs Minnesota Furs 2022 Fall Elections Forum Meet the Candidates Jericho “Dirge” Nordstrom

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    Tell us about yourself

    My name is Dirge, and I’ve been a member of the fandom since 2015. I have attended FM every
    year since 2016, becoming staff in 2018, and working in Consuite that first year. In 2019, I
    transferred to the Hotels Department, and have been there since. Also in 2019, I began to
    attend the Duluth area meets. I became an admin for the Twin Ports Telegram chat, and I help
    staff and facilitate meets. This year, I joined MNFurs Staff, working in the Events Department,
    and have been thoroughly enjoying that. I regularly attend meets both in Duluth and the Twin
    Cities, for fun and Staff purposes.

    What brought you to the furry fandom?

    I first discovered the fandom through fan art of Balto and other classic animated films on
    DeviantArt, eventually segueing into the community through Furaffinity. I’m not a terribly creative
    person, so it wasn’t until 2018 that I officially created my fursona and began commissioning art
    of him. My fursona is a red and black wolf, who is the direct anthro representation of myself. I've
    developed a very strong emotional connection with him over the years, and I'm looking to
    commission a suit of him within the next year.

    How will you continue to volunteer in the community after being elected to the board?

    I plan to keep working with Events, and help establish other official communities within other
    outlying areas of the state, including the St. Cloud area, Moorhead, and Mankato. We have had
    a number of people in those areas looking to attend events local to them, and I think this would
    help increase community engagement with the organization, as well as unite the fandom in
    areas outside the Twin Cities Metro. I will continue to work in the Hotels department alongside
    my colleagues there, and support Furry Migration as the convention grows. I would also like to
    focus on increasing community engagement with the board itself, as our job should be to serve
    the fandom to the best of our abilities, which requires hearing from our community members
    directly. I would like to empower departments to streamline processes when acting
    independently, and encourage higher levels of interdepartmental cooperation when needed.

    How do you view events like Furry Migration and Midwinter Frolic impact the Minnesota
    Furs community today and tomorrow?

    Midwinter Frolic is a unique event that can give attendees a taste of the Minnesota outdoors,
    and sets us apart from other communities in the Midwest. An event like this is capable of
    drawing people in from other areas outside of the state, and more remote communities within it.
    It also provides a larger, convention-like experience in a time between Furry Migration, and can
    keep members more engaged with the community throughout the year. We have seen clearly
    that Furry Migration is capable of drawing people from not only all over the country, but all
    around the world. It is a crucial tool in immersing members of the fandom in our local culture. It
    could be considered our flagship event, and is likely to draw more new members into the
    fandom from around the local area and state.

    What are your strengths that you will bring to the board?

    With a critical eye when it comes to decision making, I ensure that I am both objective in my
    reasoning, but also maintain a sense of humanity when it comes down to tough decisions.
    Separating emotions requires rational consideration and people skills that foster positive
    connections between me and community members. I have good communication skills and am
    good at working on a team, coming up with ideas and working with others to bring them to
    fruition. I’m good with technology, and can learn to use new computer systems quickly and
    enjoy working with tech.

    What do you feel are areas where you want to further develop yourself? Why?

    I am not the most assertive when it comes to speaking my mind in the face of strong opposition,
    but I am becoming comfortable with making decisions that are important to the community.
    However, this is an area that I can grow as I will need to speak my mind and be consistent after
    I have made decisions. At times, I tend to be somewhat disorganized, but I will continue to use
    the organizational skills and tools I’ve acquired to keep myself on track.

    How can Minnesota Furs reach out to other communities local and national in furry and
    other fandoms?

    I’ve noticed that many people are not aware that Minnesota even has a furry convention, let
    alone an entire organization that supports the fandom year round. I think the distribution of
    physical media (Flyers and/or posters) at other regional events would help spread the word.
    This could also extend to conventions for other fandoms, such as Anime Detour, Dulucon, and
    Twin Cities Con. I also believe we can educate people at these non-furry events about what the
    furry fandom is, and what we as a community do. Such education could be done with panels at
    these events, as well as with physical flyers. I think it is important that we not only keep, but
    expand our relationship with our existing partners, such as GPS, as they are a valuable
    connection and asset to the organization.

    What are two things that you would like to see accomplished/improved during your

    One of my goals is to assist the development of the Furry Resources department, as I think that
    this will be invaluable to almost every aspect of the organization. With it, we can increase our
    capacity to educate and connect with community members, resolve conflicts in a manner that
    makes all parties happy, and mitigate liability within the organization.
    I would also like to see the MNFurs website expanded to include more educational and social
    content, which will encourage greater user engagement. One idea I would like to see
    experimented with is a social media style format, as I think it could increase regular use of the
    site by younger members of the community, who are not used to the forum-style format.

    One goal of MNFurs is to promote education. How do you intend on helping promote

    I would promote the use of digital media to help engage with the community and provide
    education to its members. I think one good way to accomplish this would be the continuation of
    the Talking Points podcast or another similar program, or the creation of ‘How to’ or other
    educational videos in collaboration with our community members.

    Minnesota Furs can become a second life and a second job. How do you plan to keep
    yourself active in other things and other communities?

    Outside of the fandom, I work as a trucker, driving locally within the Twin Cities and surrounding
    areas. Given the nature of my job, I have a fair bit of downtime at work each day where I’m
    waiting. I think this could be a great opportunity to do board work from my laptop, so that when I
    come home, I have minimal work to do for MNFurs. I think that for me, this could be a viable
    way to separate work from my hobbies, and continue to do the things I enjoy in my off time.
    My biggest passions are travel and motor vehicles of all types, and I enjoy working on my cars
    and motorcycles. I also dabbling in photography, and mainly shoot film these days, and develop
    it myself at home. I intend to plan my time well and use it efficiently so I can keep doing these
    things, while also serving the community.

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