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ICANN Appoints New Board Chair & Vice-Chair

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates… The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN) today announced a new leadership team to head the ICANN Board of Directors. Cherine Chalaby and Chris Disspain were appointed at the 19th Annual General Meeting (AGM), as the new Chair of the ICANN Board and Vice-Chair respectively, in Abu Dhabi.

ICANN’s 60th Public Meeting (ICANN60), held in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries for the first time, featured a tribute to Dr. Stephen Crocker, who retired from the ICANN Board after this meeting.

Data protection and privacy rules, particularly the European Union General Data Protection Regulation, were a hot topic during the meeting. Many discussions across the community focused on gaining an understanding of the main concerns for various stakeholder groups & calls to action for ICANN org & Board. They also focused on  encouraging the community to continue discussions, & find a balanced path forward in the shorter term, including as part of related current policy work.

In addition, the community’s policy and advice development work continued, & many community groups welcomed new leaders & participants.

The Nominating Committee first selected Chalaby to serve on the Board in December 2010. He was elected as the Vice-Chair in 2015, and is succeeding Crocker, who served as ICANN Board Chair since 2011.

The country code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO) selected Disspain to join the ICANN Board in June 2011. He is an active ICANN community member & served as the Chair of ccNSO from 2004 to 2011.

“I’m deeply honored to be elected as the Board Chair,” said Chalaby. “The Board had enough confidence in ICANN’s maturity to elect me even though I'm do not come from the long & distinguished line of ‘Masters of the Internet Universe.’ I look forward to the future with great hope and enthusiasm, particularly to the partnership we will continue to build with the ICANN community.”

“Cherine has been an excellent Vice-Chair over the past two years. This is evident from the unanimous support from all members of the Board in his election as the next Chair of the ICANN Board. I'm proud & excited & will work with him closely for a smooth & orderly transition of responsibilities,” said Crocker.

The Board also welcomed new Board members León Sanchez (LAC), Matthew Shears (EMEA), Avri Doria (NA), Sarah Deutsch (NA), & Manal Ismail (Egypt) as the Governmental Advisory Committee Liaison to the Board. They replaced outgoing Stephen Crocker, Rinalia Abdul Rahim, Asha Hemrajani, Markus Kummer & Thomas Schneider.

A total of 1,910 participants attended 325 public sessions at ICANN60. It was the first time at an ICANN meeting for 704 of them. There were 277 attendees from the Middle East region.

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For more information about ICANN Board, please visit here.

For more information about ICANN60, please visit

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Media Contacts

Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel:+90 533 0313505

Buket Coskuner
Worldwide Communications Coordinator, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 4876254


ICANN’s mission is to help ensure a stable, secure & unified international Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you have to type an address into your computer – a name or a number. That address has to be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate & support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation & a community with participants from all over the global. For more information please visit:


Updated: November 3, 2017 — 3:30 pm

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