Jimmy Wales names Emily Temple-Wood and Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight as Wikipedians of the Year

Photo by Zack McCune, CC BY-SA 4.0.
Photo by Zack McCune, CC BY-SA 4.0.
Photo by Zachary McCune, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Jimmy Wales has named Emily Temple-Wood and Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight as his co-Wikipedians of the Year. Temple-Wood and Stephenson-Goodknight were honored thanks to their work with harassment on Wikipedia, along with their collective efforts to expand coverage of notable women on the site.

Temple-Wood, who edits as Keilana (“Kay-lah-nah”), has been an editor on the English Wikipedia since 2007. Her work and direct impact on the site is vast: she has created nearly 400 articles and improved hundreds of others, including on Barbara McClintock—1983 winner of the Nobel Prize.

A first-year medical student, Temple-Wood focuses on female scientists and LBGT+ and women’s health, and runs frequent edit-a-thons near her hometown of Chicago when not editing or working as the Wikipedian in Residence at the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

According to Stephenson-Goodknight, Temple-Wood is the “poster child of the efforts to address Wikipedia’s scientific gender gap,” and she has an ongoing effort to match every harassing email she receives with a new biography on a women scientist.

For her part, Stephenson-Goodknight, who edits as Rosiestep, has significantly contributed to over 3,000 articles, including 1,300 “did you knows” on Wikipedia’s main page. In addition to her content work, she was a core founding member of the Teahouse, a page that helps acclimate new Wikipedians into the site’s culture and basic practices. Stephenson-Goodknight has inspired women editors through co-founding the WikiWomen’s User Group and Wikipedia:WikiProject Women, along with coordinating and co-founding the Women in Red campaign.

Stephenson-Goodknight has said of her Wikipedia editing that:

Some of you know that I am a cultural anthropologist at heart. I wanted to follow in the footsteps of Margaret Mead and study cultural anthropology at Barnard (my mom’s alma mater), like Margaret did. I wanted to travel to Papua New Guinea and do research on its people, like Margaret did. But my dad said ‘no’ to majoring in anthropology—he wanted something more practical for my university studies. So now, years later, I get to live the life of an armchair cultural anthropologist … To all the girls out there with impractical dreams, this article is dedicated to you.”

Also named by Wales were two honorable mentions: User:Mardetanha and Vassia Atanassova, from the Farsi- and Bulgarian-language communities, respectively. Mardetanha started the Farsi-language branch of the Wikipedia Library, which helps connect Wikipedia editors to the sources they need to improve the site. Despite several obstacles, he found three publishers to donate research access to Wikipedians; he has committed huge chunks of time and energy into making resources and communications channels.

Atanassova created the #100wikidays competition, which has inspired editors new and old to create at least one Wikipedia article each day for 100 days. 120 editors from 42 projects (and nearly as many languages) accepted the challenge; about a third of them have already completed it.

Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, gave out the award during Wikimania, the annual conference that celebrates the Wikimedia movement; it has been given out every year since 2011. Past honorees have included Rémi Mathis, who was pressured by the French government into deleting an article on a military radio station, and Ihor Kostenko, a Wikipedian who perished in the Euromaidan protests in Ukraine.

Ed Erhart, Editorial Associate
Wikimedia Foundation

This post has been updated to reflect how many people have completed a full #100wikidays.

Photo by Zachary McCune, CC BY-SA 4.0.
Photo by Zachary McCune, CC BY-SA 4.0.

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Photo credits


Zack McCune/Wikimedia Foundation

CC BY-SA 4.0

Victorian Clock Tower, Table Bay Harbour, Cape Town V&A Waterfront, Western Cape. 1883. Gothic Style. 08

The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, South Africa.