On behalf of the ICANN Board of Directors, I'd like to thank the community for all your hard work and continued engagement in 2022 and wish you a very happy and prosperous new year.
We begin the new year with change, opportunities, and challenges. This will be a defining year in how we achieve our goals, and our success depends on all of us working together as one. The Board looks forward to continuing its discussions and collaboration with the community. We also support the leadership of Interim President and CEO Sally Costerton, and look forward to working alongside her, and the entire Executive team, to ensure that the dedicated and talented ICANN organization (org) team is able to progress its work.
Last year marked the welcome return to hybrid ICANN meetings, after more than three years of virtual-only participation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a true testament to the strength of the ICANN community that we were able to continue our important work despite the ever-changing circumstances of the past few years.
As we look back at 2022, I'm pleased to say that the ICANN Board, community, and org accomplished much together. In many cases, we were able to advance key projects in support of ICANN's mission and the global public interest. Here are just a few highlights that I'd like to share with you:
In March, the Board directed ICANN org to conduct an Operational Design Phase for the New Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) Subsequent Procedures (SubPro), to assess the organizational impacts of the 300-plus recommendations included in the SubPro Policy Development Process Final Report. In December, ICANN org delivered the resulting Operational Design Assessment to the Board to inform our deliberations.
The Board also decided to allocate US$1 million in financial assistance to support access to Internet infrastructure in emergency situations. The focused support was for maintaining Internet access to users within Ukraine affected by the Russia-Ukraine war.
In June, the Board approved the recommendations of the Cross-Community Working Group on New gTLD Auction Proceeds and directed ICANN org to begin design and implementation planning. The implementation work on the ICANN Grant Program has begun. The program, which reflects years of work by the ICANN org and community, has the potential to benefit the Internet ecosystem and people across the world, consistent with ICANN's mission.
The ICANN community and org have dedicated considerable time to exploring what we can do to mitigate threats to the DNS and enhance consumer trust in the Internet. The Board formed the Caucus on DNS Abuse to commit resources to this important issue and complement the work of the community and org. We have full confidence that together we can address the challenges and create DNS-related policies to ensure continuous delivery on our mission.
You will hear from me again soon ahead of our first Board Workshop of 2023 with an overview of the agenda. Thank you again for your many contributions. I can't wait to see what we accomplish this year!