ICANN Announcements

Read ICANN Announcements to stay informed of the latest policymaking activities, regional events, and more.

ICANN 2009 Nominating Committee Selectees

28 August 2009

In addition to the ICANN Languages, this content is also available in

The 2009 ICANN Nominating Committee (NomCom) has completed its selections for nine leadership positions within ICANN.

NomCom Chair, Tricia Drakes, said "We are delighted to announce this year’s selectees to ICANN’s leadership. They include highly accomplished individuals from Russia, India, Malaysia, Jamaica, Argentina, Chile and the United States. The Committee’s hard work has given us a result that we believe balances continuity and diversity, and includes the selection of the youngest ever member to serve on the ICANN Board. We have added some new faces to the mix, but I hope the community will agree that there is a real depth of experience as well."

The NomCom is charged with recruiting and selecting a portion of ICANN’s community leadership. NomCom works to make sure that, overall, ICANN’s leadership is diverse in geography, culture, skills, experience, and perspective. The basic criteria are that nominees are people of integrity, objectivity and judgment, can help group decision-making, can work effectively through English, have an understanding of ICANN’s mission and work, are committed to its success, contribute to cultural, professional and geographic expertise, and can work long and hard as volunteers working in the global public trust.

The NomCom evaluated over eighty candidates, many of whom were unusually strong, against key criteria set out in the ICANN Bylaws. The Committee also wanted to include some of those with skills, expertise and experience in some of the important new areas where ICANN may face challenges throughout the organization over the next few years, including IDNs (internationalized domain names). The Committee took very seriously the evolving and increasing importance of independent Board directors, and in so doing found itself unable to appoint to the Board some very experienced applicants whom it might otherwise have wished to do so.

ICANN Board of Directors

Rajasekar Ramaraj, India (2nd term)

Gonzalo Navarro, Chile

George Sadowsky, United States


James Seng, Malaysian citizen residing in China

Carlton Samuels, Jamaica

Dave Kissoondoyal, Mauritius

GNSO Council

Olga Cavalli, Argentina (2nd term)

Andrey Kolesnikov, Russian Federation

ccNSO Council

J. Beckwith Burr (Becky), United States (2nd term)

The biographies of the Nominees are reproduced below. The nominees will take up their positions at the end of ICANN’s Annual Meeting in Seoul, Korea on 30 October 2009.

This year’s Nominating Committee received 86 Statements of Interest from candidates worldwide during its open nomination period from 2 December 2008 to 15 April 2009. 71 of the 2009 candidates were men and 15 are women. The regional breakdown of this year’s candidates was:

  • 10 from Africa,
  • 24 from Asia/Australia/Pacific
  • 23 from Europe
  • 12 from Latin America/Caribbean.
  • 17 from North America

For more information about NomCom, please visit http://nomcom.icann.org/

Biographies of Selectees

Board of Directors

Rajasekar Ramaraj is an Indian national and the founder of Sify Limited, the pioneer and leader in Internet, networking and e-commerce services in India. Ramaraj’s re-appointment to a second term will maintain a continuity of experience on the Board and ensure that his valued expertise continues to be available to the Finance Committee, which he chairs, and also the Compensation and Risk committees Ramaraj serves on.

Ramaraj was first selected by the 2006 Nominating Committee to serve as a Board director from October 2006 through ICANN’s annual meeting in October 2009. He will serve three more years, with his term concluding in late 2012.

Outside of his ICANN activities, Ramaraj works as a Venture partner/mentor on a part-time basis at Sequoia Capital and is also a member of the global Board of Trustees of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs).

Gonzalo Navarro is a Chilean national and an Associate and part of the IT Practice at Morales & Besa, a well-known Chilean law firm. At thirty-three years old, Gonzalo is the youngest Director ever appointed to the ICANN Board. However, Gonzalo has already served over six years on the Government Advisory Committee, representing Chile, and has significant experience in international trade negotiations and also Internet governance.

Gonzalo’s education includes qualifications in informatics and telecommunications law from the Universidad de Chile and a Masters in Law (LLM) from Columbia University, New York.

From 2001 to 2007, Gonzalo served as Senior Adviser on International Affairs, Undersecretary of Telecommunications of Chile. In this role, Gonzalo represented Chile on the Government Advisory Committee of ICANN for over six years. He also advised the Chilean government on the implementation of public policies derived from international processes, negotiated and drafted telecommunications chapters in several Free Trade Agreements (including US-Chile FTA and China-Chile FTA) and acted as permanent representative of Chile at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), Internet Governance Forum, CITEL and APEC TEL.

Gonzalo has been appointed for a 3-year term on the Board of Directors, beginning after ICANN’s annual meeting in Seoul on 30 October, 2009, and serving through the annual meeting in 2012.

George Sadowsky studied and taught mathematics at Harvard and received his Ph.D. in Economics from Yale. He worked as a mathematician and programmer, and headed computing centers at the Brookings Institution, Northwestern University and New York University. At the United Nations, he supported technical assistance projects and has worked in more than 50 developing countries. He has been a consultant to, inter alia, the U.S. Treasury, UNDP, USAID, W3C, the Swiss Government, and the World Bank. He has served on Boards of AppliedTheory Corporation, educational networks CREN and NYSERNet, and the Internet Society where he directed ISOC’s Developing Country Network Training Workshops. More recently he was Executive Director of GIPI, the Global Internet Policy Initiative. He has written and lectured extensively on ICT and development.


James Seng has been appointed as an At Large Advisory Committee member from Asia/Australia/Pacific. James will bring his significant expertise on IDN (internationalized domain names) to bear on At Large discussions, and can also share his experience of Internet issues in several Asian countries; including Malaysia, Singapore and China where he now resides.

James is the CEO of Zodiac Holdings, a company focused on IDN gTLDs in Asia. James is also Chief Technology Officer of the Shanghai Synacast Media Tech. Co, a member of the Executive Committee of the Singapore Advance Research and Education Network, and a committee member of the Internet and New Media Committee of Media Development Authority of Singapore.

Previously, James has been a partner in Thymos Capital LLP 2007-2008, and worked as Assistant Director, Next Generation Network, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore from 2003-2006. James is or has been involved in numerous Internet-related groups and committees including the Asia Pacific IPv6 Task Force, Internet Engineering Task Force, ICANN’s IDN Registry Implementation Committee, Domain Name Technical Committeeof the Singapore Network Information Center, Asia Pacific Internet Association. He also served as Co-chair of the IDN Working Group, Internet Engineering Task Force, 1999-2003 and Chair of the iDNS Working Group, Asia Pacific Networking Group, 1998-2000.

James’ educational background includes a Bachelor of Information Technology, Software Engineering, Australian National University, 1996-1999

Carlton Samuels has been appointed as an At Large Advisory Committee member from Latin America / Caribbean. Carlton brings significant Caribbean experience and knowledge, and also an ability to facilitate consensus-building with the Latin American Internet community from his work as LACRALO secretariat.

Carlton works as a consultant and an adjunct lecturer at the Information Science Faculty of Humanities & Education in the University of the West Indies at Mona Kingston, Jamaica. He is a Jamaican and US national.

Previously, Carlton has worked as CIO & University Director of IT, University of the West Indies, Managing Director, Mona Informatix, as a registrar for the .jm ccTLD and VP, Network Systems, Neal & Massy Corporation as a senior executive with responsibility for regional network and telecommunications business segment for the largest Caribbean-based multinational.

Carlton’s current and previous volunteer positions include being a foundation member of and the current secretariat for the Latin America and Caribbean Regional At-Large Advisory Organization (LACRALO), member of the advisory boards of Microsoft Partners in Learning and the Project Advisory Board of the Caribbean Universities Project for Integrated Distance Education (CUPIDE). Carlton has also been a member of the CARICOM ICT Task Force, a regional ICT leadership position charged with developing a cohesive ICT policy framework for Caribbean governments.

Carlton’s educational background includes a degree in Natural Sciences from The University of the West Indies, a postgraduate degree in management information systems from George Mason University, US, and a postgraduate diploma in corporate strategy from the Sloan School of Management at MIT.

Dave Kissoondoyal has been appointed as an At Large Advisory Committee member from Africa. Dave will be an invaluable asset to the ALAC given his experience in Internet governance and the Internet Society, whose Mauritius chapter he founded. Dave is Director of Information Technology at Teleforma (Mauritius), Ltd - A US Upstream Company.

Previously, Dave was Group Technical Director and Chief Technology Officer for the Bowman Group of Companies. Dave is a member of the Public Interest Registry .ORG Advisory Council, a member of the African Stakeholders Network (ASN) of the United Nations Information and Communication Technologies Task Force and has been an Ambassador of the Internet Society to the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).

Dave’s other volunteer work includes acting at different times as Secretary, Treasurer and President (CEO) of Save the Children Mauritius. He also founded the Internet Society of Mauritius and is its president.

Dave’s education background includes a qualification in electronics from the University of Mauritius, in information systems management from the Mauritius Institute of Management / University of Surrey, United Kingdom, and in electronics from the City and Guilds of London Institute. He speaks English, French and Hindi.

GNSO Council

Olga Cavalli has been reappointed for a second term as a GNSO Council Member. She has served on the Council since November 2007 and will reinforce continuity and expertise at a time when the GNSO is undergoing changes. Olga is an Argentine national and IT specialist with significant experience in Internet governance, Internet and telecommunications regulations, market research, competitive analysis and marketing and strategic planning. Currently, Olga is involved in the development of access projects in rural areas of Argentina using fiber optic networks and wireless networks, as a university professor in Universidad de Buenos Aires and in the Diplomacy Career of Argentina and as the Regional Director of the South School on Internet Governance (www.south-ssig.com.ar).

As advisor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Argentina, she was the Argentina representative in the World Summit of Information Society held in Tunis in 2005. Among other activities she was the technical advisor to the Commission for the Cybercrime Law Project, a joint project of Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Argentina and the Ministry of Justice. She was also Advisor to the International Commerce Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the export of software and IT products and services. Olga also worked as regional advisor in Detecon GmbH Germany (Deutsche Telekom consulting company).

Olga’s other activities, past and present, include being the Secretary of the ISOC Chapter of Argentina, a permanent member of the ICTs and UN Millennium Development Objectives for the Latin America and Caribbean Region, General Coordinator of the World Forum “Engineering, Women and Business” to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina 2010, member of the Multi-stakeholder Advisory Group (MAG) for the Internet Governance Forum and Coordinator of the Internet Governance Working Group in the Latin America and Caribbean Regional Plan of Action for the Information Society eLAC 2010.

Olga is an Electronic and Electric Engineer and her educational background includes a PhD and Masters in Business Administration and a Masters in Telecommunications Regulation. She is fluent in Spanish, English, Portuguese and German. She lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina and is the mother of Federico (20) and Juana (14).

Andrey Kolesnikov has been appointed to the GNSO Council. He is a citizen of the Russian Federation and Director of the Coordination Center for the country code .RU. Andrey will bring insights and expertise from the country code community to bear on GNSO discussions, and can help to share cc experiences on IDN.

Previously, Andrey was Director of Media Development at Golden Telecom, a Russian / CIS telecommunications provider.

Previous volunteer positions include work with Transatlantic Partners Against AIDS and work on high-level panel of experts on ICT for the UN in 2000.

Andrey’s educational background includes studies in semiconductor technology at the Moscow Institute of Applied Chemistry.

ccNSO Council

J. Beckwith Burr (Becky) is a US citizen and has been reappointed to the ccNSO Council where she will serve a second term. Becky’s reappointment will allow her to continue contributing to the increasing policy workload of the ccNSO, sharing her insights as an accomplished lawyer with long experience of Internet issues pre-dating the creation of ICANN.

Becky is a partner at law firm Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr in Washington D.C. where she specializes in telecommunications and Internet regulation, electronic commerce, information privacy and security and Internet governance. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at George Washington University.

Previously, Becky served from 1997 to September 2000 as Associate Administrator Director of International Affairs at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Dept. of Commerce, and from 1996 to 2000 on the White House Working Group on ecommerce as primary editor of "A Framework for Global Electronic Commerce" (June 1997). Becky was also part of the Domain Name working group which was responsible for drafting the Green and White Papers). Becky’s educational background includes a B.A. from Yale University and J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center. Her other volunteer work includes or has included membership of the Advisory Board of the BNA Privacy and Security Law Report, membership of the founding board of directors of the International Association of Privacy Professionals and the advisory board of Privacy and American Business, and Chair of the Board of Directors of The Kingsbury Center Washington, D.C.