LOS ANGELES, NEW YORK, & ATLANTA, Jan. 23, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The current President and CEO of Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), Göran Marby, has announced his formal resignation, effective immediately, opening the door to a newcomer who wants lead the global multi-stakeholder organization’s mission of ensuring a stable, secure and unified global Internet for all.
ICANN organizes and maintains many aspects of Internet access across the globe, including domain name spacing and policy governing decisions relating to access and top-level domains (TLDs) in more than 80 countries. The organization, Chaired by Maarten Botterman, oversees more than 140 employees and $150 million USD of annual revenue.
“The next CEO of ICANN should be an expert in cybersecurity, Internet access, risk management, geo-political navigation, domain names and level-headed policy decisions. Given the challenges a unified Internet faces over the next decade, ICANN does not need an empty suit filling this position; it needs someone with vision, ability to address lingering problems that ICANN has faced for extended periods of time, and the guts to stand up to countries like Russia,” commented Internet expert Michael Gargiulo, CEO at VPN.com.
ICANN has stated that the search for their new President and CEO is ongoing, with the agency planning to fill the position in early 2023, adding that: “Marby will be available to consult with ICANN until May 23, 2024, to support the transition to a new leader, as well as to advise the Board on any issue they require.”
“Handshake domain issues, pricing issues across various top-level domains, TLDs assigned to countries who sponsor human rights violations, among other problems, are those that require immediate attention by ICANN. Maybe one of the largest hurdles the global organization faces with this role is that almost all of the qualified executives are already in leadership positions within the private sector. A strong effort should be made to this end instead of hiring some longtime public or agency employee with limited entrepreneurial experience who tries to lead with consensus,” Gargiulo added.
As head of VPN.com, Gargiulo brings 15 years of Internet expertise. He has led VPN.com to become one of the top brands and cybersecurity and in 2020, the Atlantan Magazine named him as “Atlanta’s Top Tech Entrepreneur.”
Notably, Gargiulo has been part of some of the largest domain name transactions in recent history, starting with his acquisition of VPN.com for $1 million, the seventh largest domain transaction in 2017.
“VPN.com and our teams are doing incredibly well and just closed another record year in 2022, but just as much is owed to our powerful domain name, ‘a durable, competitive advantage,’ as Mr. Warren Buffett calls it. Stepping away from VPN.com to lead a global organization like ICANN that aligns with our mission of freedom and a secure Internet for all is something I have considered before, but the timing was not right,” Gargiulo stated.
In 2019, Gargiulo wrote a widely shared letter to then President Donald Trump and ICANN requesting the sanction and termination of more than 1 million Iranian .ir domains due to Iran’s continued state sponsorship of human rights violations and censorship.
“I hope to see ICANN lift up the right leader. I believe the Internet needs a smart individual with a history of a serving heart, whether that’s at their church, in their local community or state government. Serving ICANN in a similar manner is something any successful entrepreneur will have to financially consider to fill the organization’s opening,” Gargiulo concluded.
Gargiulo is expected to attend the upcoming Internet Commerce Association Annual Member Meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Learn more about VPN.com at: https://www.vpn.com/domains
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