Board of Trustees

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The Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees oversees the foundation and its work, as its ultimate corporate authority.

Structure

The Board was formed in 2003 with three Trustees, and now consists of up to ten Trustees. Its work is captured in part in resolutions and votes. It appoints four officers: a Chair and Vice Chair (who have to be Trustees), and a Treasurer and Secretary (who do not). Other work is delegated to its committees, including Board Governance, Audit, and Human Resources committees.

Since 2008, the Board has seats for ten Trustees:

Contacting the Board

A Board portal and noticeboard on Meta offer recent updates and a place to share requests and recommendations. To contact the Foundation, see our contact information. To contact the Board directly, post to the noticeboard.

Current members

María Sefidari

María Sefidari
María Sefidari
Member until September 2020
Current position Chair

María Sefidari Huici is a professor in the Digital Communications, Culture and Citizenship Master's degree program of Rey Juan Carlos University at the MediaLab-Prado.

Born in Madrid, Spain, where she still lives today, María graduated with a Psychology degree from Universidad Complutense de Madrid, and later a Master's degree in Management and Tourism at the Business faculty of the same university. She was a 2014 Techweek Women’s Leadership Fellow, which showcases, celebrates, and supports emerging female leaders in business and technology.

María started contributing to the Wikimedia projects in 2006, and has since served in many different roles across the Wikimedia movement. Maria was a founding member of Wikimedia España and Wikimujeres Grupo de Usuarias, and also created Spanish Wikipedia's LGBT Wikiproject. She has served on several Wikimedia governance committees, including the Affiliations and Individual Engagement Grants committees. In her time on the Affiliations Committee, María served as the first Treasurer of the committee, effectively overseeing and monitoring disbursement of the committee's budget. From 2013 to 2015, she was also a member of the Wikimedia Foundation Board.

María re-joined the Wikimedia Foundation Board in 2016 to fill an community-nominated seat vacancy, and was later re-confirmed for a second term in August 2017.

In her spare time, María travels around the world, runs wiki-workshops to engage new editors, and supports Real Madrid Club de Fútbol.

Christophe Henner

Christophe Henner
Christophe Henner
Member until September 2019
Current position Vice Chair

Christophe Henner is the former Board Chair of Wikimedia France and current Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Blade Group, a cloud computing company headquartered in France. At Blade, Christophe is scaling up operations to support the company's transition from a start-up to a global company.

Originally from Lavaur, Christophe studied economics and law at the University of Toulouse. He has deep and varied experience across the marketing sector, holding a variety of leadership positions including Head of Marketing at the online media group, L'Odyssée Interactive, Chief Marketing Officer at an international digital media group, Webedia, and later deputy Chief Executive Officer of Webedia's gaming division.

Christophe has been an active member of the Wikimedia community for more than 12 years. In 2007, he joined the Board of Wikimedia France and has remained an active Board member in various positions for the past ten years. Nearly three of those years on the Board were spent in leadership roles, including Chair and Vice Chair of the Board.

During his time on the Board, Christophe helped lead Wikimedia France through a significant period of growth. This included leading the development of the chapter’s brand and supporting the development of a clear organizational strategy and vision for the chapter.

Esra'a Al Shafei

Esra'a Al Shafei
Esra'a Al Shafei
Member until September 2020
Current position Member

Esra'a Al Shafei is a human rights activist and the founder and director of Majal, a nonprofit which helps build communities that celebrate, protect, and promote diversity, and social justice.

A native of Bahrain, Esra'a works avidly to increase and protect free speech, promote expression for youth and underrepresented voices, and improve the lives of LGBTQ people in the Middle East and North Africa. She founded Majal in 2006 as Mideast Youth. The organization has built online platforms that creatively facilitate the struggle for social change in the Middle East and North Africa.

Esra'a received the Berkman Award for Internet Innovation from Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School in 2008 for "outstanding contributions to the internet and its impact on society." The World Economic Forum listed her as one of "15 Women Changing the World in 2015."

She has won the "Most Courageous Media" Prize from Free Press Unlimited, and the Monaco Media Prize, which acknowledges innovative uses of media for the betterment of humanity.

Esra'a is a senior TED Fellow, an Echoing Green fellow, and a Director’s Fellow at the MIT Media Lab. She received a Shuttleworth Foundation Fellowship in 2012 for her work on CrowdVoice.org. She lives in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Tanya Capuano

Tanya Capuano
Tanya Capuano
Member until September 2021
Current position Member

Tanya Pine Capuano most recently was the chief financial officer (CFO) of the digital marketing company G5 in Bend, Oregon.

Originally from San Jose, California, she has wide-ranging experience including strategy and financial planning and analysis in technology. In addition to her recent role at G5, she previously held leadership positions at Intuit, Hewlett-Packard and APM Management Consultants/CSC Healthcare. She has also supported numerous education initiatives throughout her career; including serving on the boards of Education Pioneers, Los Altos Educational Foundation, and “I Have a Dream” Foundation San Francisco, an organization whose San Francisco chapter she co-founded.

She is very involved with Stanford University alumni life, having earned a bachelor's in economics, a master's in education, and a master of business administration from the university. After graduating, she worked as the university’s Director of Alumni Relations for the Graduate School of Education and Development Director for the Initiative on Improving K-12 Education. She has also served on the board of the Stanford University Graduate School of Business Alumni Association.

Tanya lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and two teenagers. They enjoy traveling as a family and experiencing the great outdoors.

Dr. James Heilman

Dr. James Heilman
Dr. James Heilman
Member until September 2020
Current position Member

Dr. James Heilman is an emergency physician in Cranbrook, British Columbia, and on the faculty of emergency medicine at the University of British Columbia.

James was born and raised in rural Saskatchewan, Canada. He completed his medical degree in 2003 in Saskatchewan, followed by his residency in British Columbia. James began editing Wikipedia in 2008, after he came across an article needing improvement in the middle of the night. Realizing that he could fix the Internet, he quickly became hooked, and later went on to help found both Wikimedia Canada and Wiki Project Med Foundation.

He has been involved in establishing collaborations to improve Wikipedia’s medical content, with organizations such as Translators Without Borders, the Cochrane Collaboration, the National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization, and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine. He is a frequent speaker at medical schools and conferences to encourage his colleagues to engage with Wikipedia.

James has a background in both distance running and adventure racing, having completed Morocco’s Marathon Des Sables and the Adventure Racing World Championships.

Dr. Dariusz Jemielniak

Dr. Dariusz Jemielniak
Dr. Dariusz Jemielniak
Member until September 2020
Current position Member

Dr. Dariusz Jemielniak is a full professor of management, the head of the Center for Research on Organizations and Workplaces, and a founder of New Research on Digital Societies (NeRDS) group at Kozminski University.

Originally from Warsaw, Poland, Dariusz studies open collaboration communities, the phenomenon of organized sharing (including piracy), and political memes. He has conducted research projects on related issues at Cornell University, Harvard University, Berkeley, and MIT. In 2014, he published Common knowledge? An Ethnography of Wikipedia at Stanford University Press. He has been the recipient of many academic merit awards, including a 2004 Fulbright Foundation scholarship and the 2009 Polish Ministry of Science outstanding young scholar award.

Dariusz has held a variety of different roles on Wikipedia, including administrator, bureaucrat, checkuser, steward, and ombudsman. He served as the chair of Wikimedia’s Funds Dissemination Committee for three terms.

Dariusz has served as chairperson of the "Inkubator" network for rising literary talent in Poland, chairperson of the Collegium Invisibile academic society, and as a member of the the advisory boards of the Copernicus Science Center and the English Teaching program of the Nida Foundation. He is also the founder of Ling.pl, the largest Polish online dictionary.

Raju Narisetti

Raju Narisetti
Raju Narisetti
Member until September 2020
Current position Member

Raju Narisetti is a professor of Professional Practice and director of the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism at Columbia University. He recently served as the chief executive officer of Gizmodo Media Group, the Univision Communications Inc owned publisher of pioneering digital brands.

Born in Hyderabad, India, Raju holds a Bachelor’s degree from Osmania University in Hyderabad, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Institute of Rural Management in Anand (India); a post-graduate diploma from The Times School of Journalism in New Delhi; and a Master’s in Journalism from Indiana University.

Over nearly three decades, Raju has led and transformed news organizations in three continents.

Raju began his journalism career at The Economic Times in New Delhi and later went on to found India’s Mint Newspaper, now the second largest business newspaper in the country.  

He spent 15 years at The Wall Street Journal, starting as a summer intern and in a variety of reporting and editing roles, including the Editor of The Wall Street Journal Europe; Deputy Managing Editor of The Wall Street Journal; and Managing Editor of WSJ Digital.

Raju also served as Managing Editor at The Washington Post, where he was instrumental in combining its print and digital newsrooms, in addition to overseeing its editing, design, photo, video, engagement and social media teams.

Prior to his work at Gizmodo, Raju was Senior Vice President, Strategy, at News Corp, the publisher of The Times of London and The Wall Street Journal.

Raju is the Vice-chair for the Board of Directors of the International Center for Journalists, as well as as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Institute of International Education, which administers the Fulbright Scholarship programmes the Scholar Rescue Fund. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Nataliia Tymkiv

Nataliia Tymkiv
Member until September 2019
Current position Member

Nataliia Tymkiv currently serves as Financial Director of the Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law, a Ukrainian media policy and human rights nonprofit. Nataliia grew up in Western Ukraine and has a Masters degree in Public Administration and a Specialist degree in Records Management and Information Activities. She has in-depth experience in executive leadership and financial management. Prior to her current role as Financial Director, Nataliia worked at a manufacturing firm and later, in finance at a construction company.

On the Wikimedia projects, Nataliia has been an active contributor since 2011, and shortly after became an administrator of Ukrainian Wikipedia. She has also been a member of the Wikimedia Ukraine community for nearly four years.

In late 2012, Nataliia joined the Board of Wikimedia Ukraine as Treasurer. In this position, Nataliia built the financial model for the chapter from the ground up, including detailed financial reporting, accounting, and grant-making activities for the organization. Nataliia was later selected to serve as volunteer Executive Director of Wikimedia Ukraine in 2013 in addition to her position on the Board. In 2015, she returned to her position as Vice Chair and Treasurer of the Board.

Throughout her time on the Board, Nataliia helped oversee the growth and expansion of Wikimedia Ukraine in a number of ways, including improvements in transparency and governance-related processes for the chapter, the transition to Annual Plan Grants (APG) funding, growing Wikimedia Ukraine staff, and building and maintaining donor, partner, and community relationships.

Jimmy Wales

Jimmy Wales
Jimmy Wales
Member until December 2018
Current position Member

Jimmy Wales is an Internet entrepreneur and wiki enthusiast, and founder of the Wikipedia project.

Jimmy was born in Huntsville, Alabama in 1966, and is a graduate of Auburn University and the University of Alabama. He worked as Research Director at Chicago Options Associates, a futures and options trading firm then located in Chicago. In the mid-1990s he started Bomis, a search portal focusing on aspects of pop culture, one of the first users of the freely licensed data of the Open Directory Project.

In 1999, Jimmy had the concept of a freely distributable encyclopedia and founded Nupedia, by hiring philosopher Larry Sanger as editor-in-chief and assigning two programmers to write software for it. Nupedia failed, perhaps due to being a top-down cathedral model, as opposed to Wikipedia, which is the ultimate bazaar. After two years of working with the Nupedia concept, that team opened Wikipedia to help channel content into Nupedia; Wikipedia became an instant success, but not in the envisioned way, and Nupedia was shut down. In 2003, Jimmy set up the Wikimedia Foundation, a non-profit organization, to support Wikipedia and its sister projects.

In 2004, Jimmy founded Wikia. He was appointed a fellow of Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society in mid-2005, and in October of 2005 joined the Board of Directors of Socialtext, a provider of wiki technology to businesses.

Former members

Main article: Former Board of Trustees members

Further reading

Footnotes