Preparing for the Next Chapter

April 10th, 2013

Gary Kovacs joined us in November of 2010 as the Mozilla Corporation’s third CEO. I was the first (2004-2008), and John Lilly the second (2008-2010). We’ve had two CEO transitions so far, and now we will have a third. Gary will step down as CEO later this year. He will remain a member of our board of directors. As we did before, we are making this announcement as we begin a search for a new CEO, rather than waiting until after we have identified one. This fits with Mozilla’s identity as a public benefit organization dedicated to openness and participation in Internet life.

Each of Mozilla Corporation’s CEOs has brought our particular skills and expertise to an important era of Mozilla and Firefox development. I led during the start-up/underdog phase and the transition into an industry success with a strong open source and public benefit core. John’s leadership helped us solidify that success, grow to a couple of hundred people (huge by our standards then) and extend our reach in ways we hadn’t imagined.

Gary joined us to make a dramatic pivot — to move Mozilla from the desktop browser world into the mobile ecosystem. In 2010 we knew that we would need to change many things in order to be effective in the mobile computing environment: our technology, our expertise, our worldview, our focus. Gary’s leadership during this period has helped us build on the strong foundation to make these changes, and to bring that strength into the mobile environment. Gary has reinvigorated our focus on working with commercial partners, a trait that was central in Mozilla’s early life but less so during the Firefox desktop era.

We have accomplished a huge amount since Gary joined us. I want to thank Gary for his contributions to our cause, and for bringing new things to Mozilla. Our understanding of the world is deeper and our ability to focus stronger as a result. We have also built many layers of strong leaders at Mozilla. I have every confidence in the leadership team, in the dedicated individuals throughout Mozilla, in our vibrant community and the growing participation of our commercial contributors. We’ll celebrate this at the Summit, we’ll see it in action before then, and we’ll see it in the products we build and ship in the coming months.

There’s a lot to do. The future of our freedoms online are at stake. For my part I’ll be more deeply involvement in Mozilla’s daily activities during the transition period and in the CEO search. I’ll also be working to ensure that our partners and individual contributors have the tools they need to make meaningful contributions to Mozilla, and through us to the potential of the Web.

I urge each of us to step forward and *lead* — lead each other and lead others to join us. Lead a growing number of people as we build as much openness, innovation and opportunity into Internet life as we possibly can. Let’s make something great of the changes that come our way. Let’s make the next 15 years a watershed time for the digital freedom and opportunity.

5 comments for “Preparing for the Next Chapter”

  1. 1

    Don Dalton said on April 16th, 2013 at 7:02 pm:

    Really a great organisation and one great idea!! Glad to see Gary still has his fingers in the pie! Best of luck to the new guy. If he is as good as the past CEO’s he will be great!

  2. 2

    abem said on April 27th, 2013 at 1:11 am:


  3. 3

    sun said on May 4th, 2013 at 2:46 pm:

    How do you remove access to licenses or source distribution that is unwanted? Thanks

  4. 4

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