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New global head of internet governance organization chosen

Kurtis Lindqvist, now CEO of the London Internet Exchange, will be based in Geneva once he becomes CEO of ICANN.

ICANN opens a four-day meeting in the Rwandan capital Kigali
ICANN opens a four-day meeting in the Rwandan capital Kigali (AN/)

GENEVA (AN) — A Finnish business executive will serve as the next CEO of the U.S.-based Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers.

ICANN's board of directors announced on Monday its selection of Kurtis Lindqvist, who will be based in Geneva once he starts in the job on Dec. 5.

The organization, which is headquartered in Los Angeles, maintains the central repository for IP addresses and helps coordinate the supply of IP addresses. It also manages the domain name system and root servers.

Lindqvist brings three decades of experience in the business of internet service providers and worldwide network carriers to the job, and has been CEO of the London Internet Exchange since 2019.

“He is a well-respected, transformational leader who will propel ICANN into the future," said Tripti Sinha, ICANN's board chair. “Kurtis’ vision, values and commitment to preserving a single, globally interoperable internet align extraordinarily well with ICANN’s goals and strategic plans."

New head to split time in Switzerland and U.S.

Lindqvist said he cares deeply about the protection and evolution of the internet, which has enabled entire industries to innovate and evolve.

"ICANN, as part of the ecosystem, is at the core of the success of this model, together with the technologies that enable it," he said.

The organization said it manages more than 180 million domain names and four billion network addresses around the world, but has no control over internet content, malware or spam.

Sally Costerton, an experienced business executive who has worked for ICANN since Sept. 2012, will keep serving as its interim CEO until Lindqvist takes over.

ICANN said Lindqvist will be based in its Geneva office and spend significant amounts of time in ICANN’s Los Angeles headquarters.