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Our International Office Strategy

26 June 2017
By Göran Marby

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When I first joined ICANN, many of you had asked me about how we manage our offices around the world. We've now formalized this in our international office strategy so that we operate more consistently and effectively together, serving you, the global community.


We've moved from having three global hubs to having five regional offices: Los Angeles (headquarters), Brussels, Istanbul, Montevideo, and Singapore. We have engagement centers in Washington, D.C.; Geneva; Beijing; and Nairobi. We also have strategic partnerships in Asunçion, Cairo, and Seoul that help us reach more stakeholders around the world.

Los Angeles is the headquarters, as the community decided during the IANA stewardship transition that ICANN would be a California-based organization with a mission to serve the global community.

The intention of this structure is to ensure we provide the best possible service to you, the community. Since your needs vary greatly by location, so will our services and support in the offices. For example, the EMEA region is so large and diverse and community needs vary from country to country. We recognized this fact by leveraging our office in Brussels to further support the wide-ranging needs in this region.


I am also pleased to announce that Nick Tomasso, VP of Meeting Operations, will be the new Managing Director of the Istanbul office starting 1 September 2017. I'm grateful he's accepted this role and is relocating to Istanbul. David Olive has done a tremendous job creating and leading the Istanbul office since its inception in 2013. David is moving back to Washington, D.C. at the end of August to continue in his capacity as Senior VP, Policy Development and Support. I thank him for his service and dedication to building the Istanbul office from the ground up.

In addition, after 12 years at ICANN, Olof Nordling, VP of Policy Development and Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) Relations, is retiring from ICANN on 31 July 2017. He has done a superb job running the Brussels office. I know the GAC and the Brussels team will miss him greatly – and will say their goodbyes here in Johannesburg.

Jean-Jacques Sahel, VP of Stakeholder Engagement for Europe, will become the Managing Director of the Brussels office. I want to thank Jean-Jacques for accepting this role. Jia-Rong Low continues in his capacity as Managing Director for Singapore. Rodrigo de la Parra will become the Managing Director for Montevideo, serving the Latin American and Caribbean region. Tarek Kamel is the Managing Director for Geneva, and Duncan Burns is the Managing Director of the Washington, D.C. office.

All Managing Directors (Duncan Burns, Jia-Rong Low, Jean-Jacques Sahel, Nick Tomasso, Rodrigo de la Parra, Tarek Kamel) are responsible for their office's strategic plan, operating costs, and staff assigned to their location. They will continue to report to their functional lead, and have a dotted reporting line to me. We are leveraging the successful model we've had in place in Singapore and Istanbul for some time now, and will operate more consistently across locations.

I am confident that these changes will position the organization to best support the global community and its diverse needs. Having a consistent approach will help provide clearer roles and responsibilities within the organization which also helps improve accountability.

Below is a summary of these changes.

ICANN offices

Regional Offices

  • Brussels – Jean-Jacques Sahel, Managing Director (from 1 August)
  • Istanbul – David Olive (until August 2017), then Nick Tomasso (from 1 September 2017) Managing Director
  • Los Angeles – Göran Marby, Managing Director
  • Montevideo – Rodrigo de la Parra, Managing Director
  • Singapore – Jia-Rong Low, Managing Director

Engagement Centers

  • Beijing – Jian-Chuan Zhang, Office Head
  • Geneva – Tarek Kamel, Managing Director
  • Nairobi – Pierre Dandjinou, Office Head
  • Washington D.C – Duncan Burns, Managing Director


  • Asunçion – partnership with the National Secretariat for Information and Communication Technologies of Paraguay
  • Cairo – partnership with National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority
  • Seoul – partnership with Korea Internet & Security Agency


Göran Marby

Göran Marby

Former President & CEO