Our Mission and Key Players
The Open Voting Consortium is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the development, maintenance, and delivery of trustable and open voting systems for use in public elections. We are comprised of computer scientists, voting experts, and voting rights activists. We have a growing international membership base, but our organizing efforts are currently focused in California where we are actively engaged in legislation and implementing Open Voting as a model for the United States.
The founders of OVC are computer scientist Alan Dechert, database and election systems expert Dr. Arthur Keller, and computer science professor Dr. Doug Jones. They have worked collaboratively with experts from throughout the world to examine every aspect of voting scientifically and advance needed reform so that confidence can be restored in American elections. Many of these experts now serve as advisors or on the OVC Board of Directors. In sum, OVC has the brain power and computer programming talent to develop open source software codes and a comprehensive data base and check list for electoral accountability. Now all we need is your support!
What We Do
Voting System Development
We have developed (1) a prototype of open-source software for voting machines (2) an electronic voting machine that prints a paper ballot, (3) a ballot verification station that scans the paper ballot and lets a voter hear the selections, and (4) stations with functions to aid visually impaired people so they can vote without assistance. Open source means that anyone can see how the machines are programmed and how they work.
We helped California enact Senate Bill 1438, which requires a paper trail for all electronic voting machines by 2006. We helped draft and garner support for Assembly Concurrent Resolution 242, which encourages the California Secretary of State to investigate open source software for voting systems. We worked with activists in Utah to stop the purchase of paperless electronic voting systems. We offer expert advice and strategy planning to groups working on election reform legislation.
Our members organize events around the country, including Open Voting Meetups, to educate their communities about the need for an open voting system. We work with other political groups to organize events. We have a Speakers Bureau providing access to documentaries, activists, and voting system experts. We supply tools for organizing events (see Take Action). Members of our Speaker’s Bureau often appear on the radio, television, and in public meetings to educate people about the need for a secure, transparent, accessible, and reliable voting system.