I selected Angela "webchick" Byron as my co-maintainer for Drupal 7 back in DrupalCon Szeged in August 2008. Since then, together we shepherded efforts of 1,000 core contributors to create Drupal 7, got the release out the door in January of last year, and worked hard thereafter to stabilize Drupal 7, to the point that the number of Drupal 7 sites eclipsed the number of Drupal 6 sites earlier this year.

However, Angela's level of responsibility in the community has grown significantly in the past 3.5 years, and she wears many hats, from Drupal Association board member to code sprint planner to Drupal.org coordinator to evangelist to general community cat herder. We both felt that it was time to transition the role of Drupal 7 core co-maintainer off of her plate, in order to give her more time to focus on her other community roles.

When thinking about replacements for Angela, David Rothstein was at the top of my list. David was a key contributor to Drupal 7 and heavily involved in a wide range of issues throughout the code base. He was also on the Drupal Gardens team, developing against Drupal 7 while it was still in active development, and so has a very thorough and deep understanding of Drupal 7's internals. David is extremely conscientious and thorough in his reviews, and is incredibly calm and respectful in his communication style.

I'm thrilled to say that David accepted the invitation to join the core co-maintainer team, and will have time to work on managing Drupal 7 releases through community time provided by his current employer, Advomatic. David will not be committing to the Drupal 8 branch, but will be focused on guaranteeing the quality of Drupal 7.

Please join me in welcoming David to the core maintainer team!


Gábor Hojtsy (not verified):

Congrats David! Great pick, Dries!

Is Angie entirely out of the core committer team or David helps Angie?

Also how does this change the backport workflow? Previously Angie was committing Drupal 8 issues that were tagged for Drupal 7 backport. You write David would not commit to Drupal 8, so backport issues would now again need to go through the Drupal 8 committers first and then to David? An excellent example is this bug introduced in Drupal 7 releases lately: https://www.drupal.org/node/1572394

David Rothstein (not verified):

Regarding backports, the way I see it is that there are still three people who have "free reign" to commit patches to Drupal 8 (there was only one when that backport workflow was introduced originally), so bug fixes now move from Drupal 8 down to Drupal 7 a lot more quickly than they did in the early days.

And if there's a particularly important issue that needs fixing in Drupal 7, I can also help give it attention while it's still waiting to be committed in the Drupal 8 queue (and make sure it's ready for quick Drupal 7 backport), even if I don't commit the patch to Drupal 8 myself.

marcvangend (not verified):

Here's not only a warm welcome to David (congrats on your new role!), but also a HUGE thank you to Angie who has been a terrific co-maintainer. D7 wouldn't have been the same without you!

Sam Kottler (not verified):

This is a fantastic choice for Drupal. David is one of the most sincerely kind, thoughtful, responsive, and proactive members of the community and will make a great branch maintainer for D7!

Jacob Singh (not verified):

This is *great* news. Having worked with David for 2 years, I can say he is one of the best and most detail oriented developers I have worked with. But he's also the calm and respectful voice of reason in so many arguments which makes him perfect for the job.

jen lampton (not verified):

Congratulations to David, and I think this is going to be great for Drupal too. I always see David doing great things in the issue queues, and it will be nice for Angie to have a more reasonable amount of work on her plate.

Kudos all around!

sun (not verified):

The current concept of one branch maintainer is not sustainable anymore.

The last time it was, was in Drupal 5. Since then, the massively increased length of release cycles, as well as the massively increased complexity of core functionality and code turned the branch maintainers into single-handed monkeys that are giving their absolute best to handle the overloaded situation. But the sheer never-ending amount of work cannot be handled by any single person. It's a crystal clear recipe for burn-out.

Huge props to Gábor Hojtsy for maintaining the Drupal 6 branch since April 2007. That's 5 years already and won't stop for another 1-2 years until D8 is stable.

Huge props to Angela Byron (webchick)) for having the balls and managing to lead, develop, and maintain Drupal 7 for 4 very long years, and even coping with the core development and community problems that popped up during that time.

You don't have to be Nostradamus to predict that this story of core maintainer sign-out/burn-out will continue with Nathaniel Catchpole (catch), unless we resolve the problem.

Having signed up for the job adds a giant amount of pressure, without anything measurable in return, so I can only applaud everyone who realizes when the voluntary obligation starts to destroy life and decides to step down.

I'm not arguing for the so-called Lieutenant model (as I strongly believe it breaks the rule of separation of concerns; i.e., the QA step in the development process), but I do argue for more co-maintainers ("Generals") per branch. Including stable versions. Neither Catch nor David should be on their own.

(And yes, you'll say that you're complementing Catch, but as we all know, your time is extremely limited. So, sorry, but you only count as half in my book.)

Nate Haug (not verified):

w00t! Nice. Considering the most consistent bottleneck in Drupal core development right now is patch reviews, the more people who can share the responsibility the better. Thanks David for undertaking this huge responsibility. He'll be an excellent person for the job.

Alex UA (not verified):

Awesome! David is an amazing asset for the Drupal community, and is (along with webchick) one of the most down-to-earth and accessible people in the group of core contributors (not a knock on anyone, more of a testament to David's blend of people and programming skills).

Congrats, David! I can't think of a more deserving person to "carry the torch"!

David Rothstein (not verified):

Thanks for the kind words, everyone!

And I definitely want to join in thanking Angie for conning me int-- er, for the amazing work she's done over the past three and a half years, which includes reviewing and committing 3,307 patches (and counting!) as well as using her unparalleled community skills to resolve countless issue queue debates during Drupal 7's development cycle, all of which made it the awesome release it is today.

Now that she no longer has primary responsibility for maintaining Drupal 7, I'm looking forward to what she'll accomplish with the 85 hours per day she'll be dedicating to her other Drupal community pursuits (up from the mere 65 hours per day she does now) :)

I'm glad to be helping out and thankful for the opportunity to do so.