Mozilla

Posts Tagged with “staff”

Mozilla Summit

March 31st, 2013

Mozilla contributors participate from all over the globe. We participate in ones and twos from home. In Internet cafes and hacker spaces and university buildings. In Mozilla spaces with large concentrations of peers. In every continent, including Antarctica. Our participation structure is distributed, decentralized and highly individualized. In this way we represent the Web. We’re also human beings, of course, and we *love* to get together. It’s fun, it allows us to get to know each other, and to exchange the high-bandwidth ideas that face-to-face provides. And it helps us develop a shared understanding of what we are doing.

This year we’re going to gather as many key contributors as we can at the same time for the 2013 Mozilla Summit. The Summit will be open to about 1,000 Mozilla volunteers and all 900 or so of our employees. This will be the first time since 2010 that key volunteers and all Mozilla employees will have the opportunity to gather together and to work face to face. We expect this to be very exciting.

Our last Summit was in 2010 and gathered about 600 people. It seemed huge then, yet in 2013 we’ll have more than three times as many people. Because of this we’re going to try some new things. First, we’re going to try having three different locations rather than gathering 2,000 people in one place. This means the Summit will be different than 2010. Exactly! Mozilla’s not like 2010, the world isn’t like 2010, and innovation is at the heart of who we are. So we’re going to try some innovations. We’re hoping to have three locations, each with the intimacy (!!!) of 600 or 700 people, some shared content and some innovative ways to join the three locales. We’ll learn from this and use what we learn to design our future events.

The multiple locations means that the Summit will be different than a geo-located “work week.” It’s unlikely that everyone who you’ll want to see face to face will all be in the same place. On the other hand, an organization our size needs trusted connections across groups, and good relationships between people you would never have thought to get to know.

My greatest hope for the Summit is to develop a shared understanding of who we are as Mozilla, how we plan to move our shared mission forward, and how our products and offerings fit into these goals. That of course means getting to know people, lots of spontaneity and fun settings and of course some real quality time exploring our products and programs.

To do this, we’re planning to identify a pretty good size planning group. That group will do a bunch of pre-work, and will meet in mid-June to figure out the content for the Summit and help shape the overall experience.

The Summit should be great fun. It is a hugely important step in bringing Mozilla together and developing a shared understanding of who we are and how we and our products bring openness and freedoms to digital citizens.

 

Mark Surman: New Mozilla Foundation Executive Director

August 18th, 2008

I’m thrilled to announce that Mark Surman is joining the Mozilla Foundation as our new Executive Director. Mark joins us after a long period of getting to know — and being known by — Mozilla contributors. This includes many, many hours of discussions with Mozilla contributors, Mozilla Foundation Board members and search committee members, an Air Mozilla broadcast, extensive discussions with current Mozilla Foundation personnel, and more hours getting to know Mozilla at the Firefox Plus Summit. It’s a rare candidate who can transit such a prolonged and open process. Many thanks to everyone who participated.

A very special thanks go to Frank Hecker, who has served as our Executive Director since 2006. Frank has been a huge champion of extending Mozilla’s reach beyond our current scope, of using Mozilla DNA and values to do so, and of expanding the open web through programs like the accessibility initiative that he has implemented. We’re very fortunate that Frank will remain with the Mozilla Foundation and will continue to champion these and other projects central to the Mozilla identity.

Mark is wrapping up his work with the Shuttleworth Foundation and will join us officially on September 22. He’ll be thinking about Mozilla — you can find his thoughts at his blog. But Mark probably won’t be very active in the online Mozilla world for much of late August and September when he’s traveling with only limited time and access. Look for more in late September and October.

Mark Surman and the Mozilla Foundation

July 17th, 2008

I’m thrilled to report that we’ve identified the person we believe should lead the Mozilla Foundation into a new stage of activity. That person is Mark Surman, the role is Mozilla Foundation Executive Director. “We” in this case is the Executive Director Search Committee, the Mozilla Foundation Board of Directors, Mozilla Foundation staff, plus a set of other Mozilla contributors who have spoken with Mark.

The Mozilla Foundation Board of Directors and Mark would like the Mozilla community and Mark to meet before we make a final decision. We’re inviting interested parties to talk with Mark about the Mozilla Foundation and the Executive Director role, to develop a feel for how well Mark and the Mozilla project fit together, and provide your thoughts and advice to Mark on what would make a successful Mozilla Foundation and a successful ED.

We’ll do this via an Air Mozilla broadcast. It will be on Wednesday, July 23 at 11am Pacific time, 6pm GMT. Mark lives in Toronto, so he’ll join us from there. Asa will host, and Mitchell will participate from Mountain View. As always, we’ll have facilities for people to send in questions, either before or during the broadcast and we’ll answer as many of them as possible. We’ll make the questions and the broadcast available afterwards for those who can’t join us at the time. After the broadcast we’ll have a mechanism for you to share your ideas. Most likely that will be  messages to me, I’ll be more definitive shortly. Your thoughts will assist the Board and Mark in making a final decision.

We are not planning to introduce a series of candidates for the Executive Director in this manner. After many months and countless discussions and interviews, Mark stands out as the one person we want to introduce to the Mozilla community for this role.

Some additional materials: Mark’s blog, which includes some recent posts about Mozilla, Mark’s CV, and the Mozilla Foundation Executive Director job description.

Ellen Siminoff Joins MoCo Board

June 4th, 2008

I’m very pleased to announce that Ellen Siminoff is joining the Mozilla Corporation board of directors. She joins John Lilly, Reid Hoffman and me on this board. Ellen brings a deep understanding of the consumer Internet, experience at growing and operating organizations of around our size, an entrepreneurial spirit, experience with Board-level responsibilities and a commitment to using these talents in the service of Mozilla’s mission.

I’ve been impressed with Ellen’s ability to figure out what a traditional profit-oriented start-up would be likely to do in a given situation, and then to recognize when those actions might be modified to reflect Mozilla DNA and to move forward in a Mozilla-like way. Those of us who live with Mozilla are used to doing this. It’s not so easy to find people with deep experience in the Internet industry who take to this so quickly. I’m looking forward to having Ellen’s perceptiveness and experience on the MoCo board.

Ellen’s CV is below. We’ll schedule an Air Mozilla broadcast with Ellen before too long so you can talk to her directly.


Ellen Siminoff is President and CEO of Shmoop University, an educational website. She is also Chairman of Efficient Frontier, a pioneer of dynamic search engine marketing management services. She worked with the founders to evolve Efficient Frontier from a groundbreaking idea into the leading Search Engine Marketing agency in the world with business in the U.S., Asia, Europe, and Latin America.Prior to Efficient Frontier, Mrs. Siminoff had six adventurous years s a founding executive at Yahoo!. During her tenure, she led business development (VP, Business Development and Planning), corporate development (SVP, Corporate Development) and eventually ran the small business and entertainment business units, representing approximately 25% of Yahoo’s revenue (SVP, Entertainment and Small Business). Before Yahoo!, Mrs. Siminoff worked for the Los Angeles Times as electronic classifieds manager, where she developed strategy and implemented the newspaper’s own on-line businesses as well as a joint venture of Career Path with 5 newspaper companies.With her husband, David, Mrs. Siminoff founded EastNet, a global syndicate barter company distributing television programming to 14 emerging market countries in exchange for advertising time. She graduated Stanford’s Graduate School of Business with an MBA in 1993 after having completed a summer in corporate finance at Salomon Brothers. Mrs. Siminoff worked as a human resources management consultant in New York after graduating from Princeton University with a bachelor’s degree in Economics.Currently, she serves on the board of directors for US Auto Parts, an Internet retailer with more than 550,000 top-rated discount car parts; Journal Communications, a diversified media and communications company operating businesses in newspaper publishing, radio and television broadcasting, telecommunications, and printing services; and glu mobile, a leading global publisher of mobile games. In 2005 she was one of eight industry professionals named “Masters of Information” by Forbes magazine. In addition, she is on the boards of directors and advisors of a number of private companies including 4info.net, the leader in mobile SMS marketing. She is a frequent speaker at industry conferences, including Ad-Tech, Search Engine Strategies, and Supernova.

Executive Director Search Update

March 11th, 2008

The Mozilla Foundation is looking for an Executive Director. We’ve been doing this for a while now. We suspected that the number of people who can understand and lead something of Mozilla’s complexity and history would be small and hard to find, and we were right. Here’s where we are.

We’ve had three or four meetings of the search committee where we talked to a number of potential candidates. So far we haven’t found a candidate the search committee thinks is close enough to introduce to the broader Mozilla group. (And of course, this process is sensitive for the candidates, so we only want to introduce candidates who we think have a reasonable chance of making sense for Mozilla.)

One important thing we’ve learned so far: It’s hard to find someone who understands both open source software and the consumer space. This is an area where Mozilla is truly a pioneer and this has been clear in the search process. We’ve talked to a number of people who understand software and open source software in particular. We’ve found that many of these folks are almost exclusively focused on things like conferences for open source developers, understanding the various open source stacks and so on. Most of these folks have not spent time living in a consumer world, or building consumer software or trying to talk to consumers. I think our massive contact with consumers is one of the unusual — almost unique — characteristics that Mozilla brings to the effort to promote openness, interoperability and participation on the web.

Another set of people understand consumers well but don’t have much background in software or open source development. Some of these folks are very smart, understand the Mozilla mission and could do a lot to help us bring the Mozilla vision to a broader set of people. For these folks the issue is generally: do they understand — or can learn – enough about Mozilla and Internet technology to be effective? That includes both being accepted by our developer community as a viable leader and understanding enough about Internet technology to be creative in our world.

We’ve come across a couple of people who seem likely to bridge this gap, although there have been setbacks. One potential candidate had to withdraw due to family circumstances. But we haven’t given up by any means.

I’ll try to do updates more frequently, and/or encourage another member of the Search Committee to do so. When we have a candidate who looks promising there will certainly be public discussion.

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