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Archive:Press room/July 2010 WMF Announces Changes to the Board

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Wikimedia Foundation announces changes to Board of Trustees

Gdańsk, Poland July 9, 2010 -- Today, at the sixth annual Wikimania Conference, the Wikimedia Foundation announced important changes to the Board of Trustees.

Every year at Wikimania, the Wikimedia Board appoints its officers for the coming year. This year, Ting Chen was appointed Chair of the Board, Stuart West was appointed Vice-chair (and continues as Board Treasurer), and Samuel Klein becomes Board Secretary.

Also, the Wikimedia chapters have made their selections for the two chapters-selected Board seats. Arne Klempert has been reappointed, and Phoebe Ayers has been newly appointed. This means that Michael Snow will be leaving the Board: he has been invited to join the Advisory Board, and the Board warmly thanks him for his years of leadership and service.

"Michael has been a loyal and devoted leader in the Wikimedia movement. I am grateful to count him as a colleague and a friend, and I know he will continue to make important contributions," said Ting Chen. "I am also pleased to welcome Phoebe Ayers, on behalf of the entire Board. And I am humbled and honored to have been selected as the Board Chair."

There are 10 seats on the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees and according to the Foundation's bylaws, three members are elected by the Wikimedia community, two are selected by the Wikimedia chapters, the Founder seat is held by Jimmy Wales, and four members are appointed by the Board itself to provide additional, specific expertise. Currently all seats on the Board of Trustees are filled.

The Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees:
Ting Chen, Board Chair (term until July 2011)
Jimmy Wales, Founder (term until December 2010)
Stuart West, Vice-chair and Treasurer (term until December 2010)
Samuel Klein, Secretary (term until July 2011)
Phoebe Ayers (term until July 2012)
Bishakha Datta (term until December 2010)
Matt Halprin (term until December 2010)
Arne Klempert (term until July 2012)
Jan-Bart de Vreede (term until December 2010)
Kat Walsh (term until July 2011)

"This is an exciting and hugely important time in the history of Wikimedia," offered Phoebe Ayers. "I'm thrilled to play a greater role, and I'm honored to have been chosen by the Chapters. It's a time of flux and change and important decisions, and I can't think of a better place to put my energy."

Phoebe Ayers is a librarian at the University of California, Davis, and has been a longtime Wikimedian, joining the movement as a Wikipedia editor in 2003. She is a highly active member of the volunteer community and has co-authored a book about the English-language Wikipedia called How Wikipedia Works: and How You Can be a Part of It.

The chapters seat selection process was created in April 2008, in order to express the Board's belief that the chapters are an important player in the fulfillment of the Wikimedia mission, and they deserve a voice in the governance of the Wikimedia Foundation Foundation.

"The chapters are very grateful for this opportunity to play a key role in the governance of the Wikimedia Foundation," offered Thomas Dalton, Treasurer of Wikimedia UK and moderator of the chapter board seat selection process. "We received nominations of several very highly qualified candidates and had a very difficult decision to make. We are confident that our chosen candidates will be able to help guide the Foundation as it continues its rapid growth and support of the ever-increasing success of the Wikimedia projects. Michael Snow's service to the board and to the Wikimedia movement, has been exemplary and we're excited he has agreed to join our Advisory Board and continue to work with the movement."

Questions and answers regarding the announcement.

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 374 million unique visitors per month, making them the 5th most popular web property worldwide (May 2010). Available in more than 270 languages, Wikipedia contains more than 15 million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of more than 100,000 people. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation is an audited, 501(c)(3) charity that is funded primarily through donations and grants.

Press inquiries

Jay Walsh
+1 (415) 839 6885 x 609