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Neeru Khosla to Become Wikimedia Advisor

Philanthropist and education pioneer joins non-profit's Advisory Board

San Francisco CA December 15, 2008 -- The Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit organization behind the web encyclopedia Wikipedia, today announced the appointment of Neeru Khosla to its Advisory Board. Khosla is co-founder and chair of CK-12, a non-profit based in Palo Alto, California which is pioneering the concept of "open source textbooks." In September, the U.S. state of Virginia announced a collaboration with CK-12 to produce an open source physics textbook, a major coup for the young non-profit organization.

"I am delighted that Neeru is joining us," said Michael Snow, Chairman of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees. "In addition to her understanding of the educational arena both in the United States and elsewhere, Neeru is experienced with the challenges of building and leading non-profit organizations. As we grow and evolve, her expertise will be enormously valuable and welcomed."

The Wikimedia Foundation, which operates the volunteer-written encyclopedia with a staff of just under 25 people, created its Advisory Board in January 2007 as a mechanism for input from leaders and thinkers in fields like education, technology, and free culture. Advisory Board members convene with Wikimedia's leadership once a year and also support the organization in their specific areas of expertise.

"When people want to learn things online, they go to Wikipedia first," said Neeru Khosla. "It's absolutely clear to me that anyone who cares about education online should seriously consider how they can help Wikipedia do an even better job. It's an important cause, and I'm more than happy to volunteer."

In March 2008, the Wikimedia Foundation received a $500,000 donation from Vinod and Neeru Khosla.

The current Advisory Board membership includes:

  • Angela Beesley (Chair, Wikimedia Advisory Board; co-founder, Wikia)
  • Ward Cunningham (Developer of the first wiki)
  • Heather Ford (Executive director, iCommons)
  • Debbie Garside (Multi-lingual web pioneer)
  • Melissa Hagemann (Open access and open education advocate, Open Society Institute/Soros foundations)
  • Danny Hillis (Engineer, author, inventor)
  • Mitch Kapor (Founder/Co-founder Lotus Developments, EFF, Mozilla Foundation)
  • Neeru Khosla (Co-founder, CK-12)
  • Teemu Leinonen (Head, Learning Environments research group of the Media Lab, University of Art and Design Helsinki)
  • Rebecca MacKinnon (Journalist; founder, Global Voices Online)
  • Wayne Mackintosh (Education specialist, Commonwealth of Learning)
  • Benjamin Mako Hill (Author, free software advocate)
  • Erin McKean (Chief consulting editor, American Dictionaries at Oxford University Press)
  • Trevor Neilson (Partner, Global Philanthropy Group)
  • Florence Nibart-Devouard (Former Chair, Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees; Scientist)
  • Achal Prabhala (Intellectual Property Researcher)
  • Jay Rosen (Journalist, author, educator)
  • Clay Shirky (Author, consultant, educator)
  • Peter Suber (Open Access advocate)
  • Raoul Weiler (ICT advocate)
  • Ethan Zuckerman (Research Fellow, Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School)

For more information, visit the advisory board page.

About us

About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation Inc. is a nonprofit, charitable organization dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free, multilingual content, and to providing the full content of its wiki-based projects to the public free of charge. It operates some of the largest collaboratively-edited reference projects in the world, including Wikipedia, one of the world's 10 most-visited websites.

For a full list of projects, visit Our projects.

All projects of the Wikimedia Foundation are collaboratively developed by volunteers using the MediaWiki software. Their content may be freely used, freely edited, freely copied and freely redistributed subject to the restrictions of that license.

About Wikipedia

The goal of Wikipedia, the largest encyclopedia in history, is to create free encyclopedias in all languages of the world. Anyone with Internet access is free to contribute by writing new articles and editing existing articles. Wikipedia was ranked the fourth most visited website on the internet in November 2008 according to comScore.

Wikipedia started in January 2001, and currently offers over eleven million articles in over 260 languages. The largest Wikipedia is in English, with more than 2.6 million articles; followed by the German and French editions, each of which contain more than six hundred thousand articles. Nine other language editions contain 200,000+ articles, and more than 150 other languages contain 1,000+ articles. Wikipedia is entirely created and maintained by a community of active volunteers.

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