Archive:Press releases/The search for our next Executive Director

From Wikimedia Foundation Governance Wiki

The Wikimedia Foundation announces search for new Executive Director to lead the Wikimedia movement

SAN FRANCISCO, California -- 22 May 2013 -- The Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit organization that operates Wikipedia and its sister projects, has kicked off its global search for a new Executive Director to lead the organization through its next phase of innovation and growth. The new Executive Director will lead a thriving international organization that operates the number five most-popular web property in the world.

The Wikimedia Foundation operates free knowledge projects used by more than half a billion people. Wikipedia contains more than 25 million volunteer-authored articles in 285 languages. The Wikimedia Foundation is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free, multilingual, educational content, and to providing the full content of these wiki-based projects to the public free of charge.

“About six weeks ago, the Wikimedia Foundation's Executive Director Sue Gardner told us she will be stepping down from her role," said Kat Walsh, Chair of the Board of Trustees. "We're really going to miss her, but I'm happy to say she'll be staying on until we find her successor, and we're now ready to kick off an international search to find that person."

The Executive Director provides the leadership and strategy for the Wikimedia Foundation and manages its day-to-day operations and activities. He or she is responsible for modernizing the user experience and nurturing, growing and diversifying the community of people who write our projects. He or she also ensures that our grantmaking supports innovation across the Wikimedia movement and enables contributor growth in underrepresented demographics and geographies.

To support the process, the Wikimedia Foundation has retained the search firm m/Oppenheim Associates to assist in finding and screening candidates. The search process is expected to unfold over the next three to six months, with a new Executive Director targeted to be in place October 2013.

The Executive Director opportunity can be found at:

For more information about the opportunity please email

About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization that operates Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. According to comScore Media Metrix, Wikipedia and the other projects operated by the Wikimedia Foundation receive more than 517 million unique visitors per month, making them the fifth-most popular web property worldwide (comScore, March 2013). Available in 285 languages, Wikipedia contains more than 25 million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of roughly 80,000 people. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation is an audited, 501(c)(3) charity that is funded primarily through donations and grants.

Wikimedia Foundation media contact
Matthew Roth
+1 415-839-6885 ext. 6635 (San Francisco)