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Nominating Committee | Members 2003

This page contains some additional information about the members of the Nominating Committee: (1) the criteria by which they were selected, and (2) background biographical information about each member.

Criteria for Selection of Nominating Committee Members

The ICANN Bylaws, Article VII, set forth the criteria that were to be applied by the various bodies designated to select members of the Nominating Committee:


Delegates to the ICANN Nominating Committee shall be:

1. Accomplished persons of integrity, objectivity, and intelligence, with reputations for sound judgment and open minds, and with experience and competence with collegial large group decision-making;

2. Persons with wide contacts, broad experience in the Internet community, and a commitment to the success of ICANN;

3. Persons whom the selecting body is confident will consult widely and accept input in carrying out their responsibilities;

4. Persons who are neutral and objective, without any fixed personal commitments to particular individuals, organizations, or commercial objectives in carrying out their Nominating Committee responsibilities;

5. Persons with an understanding of ICANN's mission and the potential impact of ICANN's activities on the broader Internet community who are willing to serve as volunteers, without compensation other than the reimbursement of certain expenses; and

6. Persons who are able to work and communicate in written and spoken English.

Members of the Committee

Christian Ahlert

Christian Ahlert, a Dr. in political science, specializes in comparative media law and policy, internet regulation and the inter-relationship of globalization, technology and politics. He is a longstanding observer of the ICANN process, and was a founding member of the "NGO and Academic ICANN Study" (NAIS). Ahlert is currently working at the Programme in Comparative Media Law and Policy at the University of Oxford. Most recently he convened the international conference "Politics of Code".

Christian serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Mark Bohannon

Mark Bohannon is the General Counsel and Senior Vice President Public Policy for the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA). As the principal trade association of the software code and information content industry, the 800 members of the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) develop and market software and electronic content for business, education, consumers and the Internet. SIIA's members are software companies, e-businesses, and information service companies, as well as many electronic commerce companies. Our membership consists of some of the largest and oldest technology enterprises in the world as well as many smaller and newer companies.

Mr. Bohannon is responsible for the legal and public policy agenda of SIIA which includes a wide range of issues including, for example, taxation, privacy, standardization, eCommerce, customs modernization and trade facilitation, intellectual property protection, trade policy, education policy, internet security, electronic contracting. Mark Bohannon's experience includes detailed engagement with hundreds of companies developing online commerce services for the business, consumer and government markets.

Prior to joining SIIA, Mr. Bohannon was a senior official of the U.S. Department of Commerce where he served as Chief Counsel for Technology and Counsellor to the Under Secretary. During his tenure, his responsibilities included technology policy, examining technical barriers to trade, eCommerce, intellectual property issues, and Internet policy. Mark Bohannon served on numerous USG delegations to bilateral talks with major trading partners and to multilateral fora such as the Hague, UNCITRAL and WTO. He served as Vice Chair of the Working Party on Information Security and Privacy at the OECD.

A native of Austin, Texas, Mark Bohannon is a graduate of the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and of the George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Bohannon serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the Intellectual Property Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Leopoldo Brandt

Leopoldo Brandt Graterol is Legal Editor at LEGIS Editores-Venezuela and also teaches e-commerce law at the Universidad Catolica Andres Bello School of Law in Caracas, Venezuela. He is Founder and President of the "Asociación Venezolana de Derecho Informático y Nuevas Tecnologías (Avdint)," Co-founder and Legal Coordinator of the "Cámara Venezolana de Comercio Electrónico (Cavecom-e)" (E-commerce chamber), and is involved in numerous legal and Internet related organizations and activities. Brandt is
the author of two books, "Paginas Web: Condiciones, Políticas y Términos Legales" (2001, Legis), and "Evaluating Web Sites for Legal Compliance" (2002, Scarecrow Press). He was a member of the former ICANN Membership Implementation Task Force (MITF).

Brandt serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Pavan Duggal

Pavan Duggal is a practicing Advocate in the Supreme Court of India at New Delhi, specializing in Cyberlaw & E-Commerce law, and has done pioneering work in the field of Convergence Law. He is the Founder and President of Cyberlaw Asia and has been associated with UNESCO on Ethical, Legal, and Societal Challenges of Cyberspace in Asia and the Pacific. Duggal was a member of the former ICANN Membership Advisory Committee and a member of the former ICANN Membership Implementation Task Force (MITF).

Duggal serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Bret Fausett

Bret Fausett is a partner with the law firm of Hancock, Rothert & Bunshoft, LLP, resident in the firm's Los Angeles office, with a practice focused on Internet and technology law. He writes the "Legal Code" column each month for CMP's New Architect magazine, and he maintains a weblog with running news and commentary on the activities of ICANN.

Fausett serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Grant Forsyth

Since November 2000 Grant has been a representatives of the Business Constituency on ICANN's DNSO (now GNSO) council and is also currently a Council member of InternetNZ, the delegated authority and policy body for the .nz ccTLD. As Manager Industry & Regulatory Affairs, Grant is responsible for the development and articulation of regulatory and public policy for TelstraClear Ltd., New Zealand's second largest full service telecommunications company and first competitive challenger to the privately owned ex-monopolist incumbent. Prior to joining TelstraClear in 1998, he was for 5 years the CEO of TUANZ, the Telecommunications Users Association of New Zealand. This followed 13 years in the IT industry including periods of work in the USA and UK. Grant has an MSCE from the University of Washington in Seattle and an Executive MBA from the University of Auckland, NZ.

Grant serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, representing large business users, selected by the Business Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Henning Grote, Dipl.-Ing.

Grote was born 1963; he is married, with 3 children. He studied electrical engineering from 1983 to 1986, specialising in digital communications. He worked as a project engineer in a naval technology project for Krupp Atlas Elektronik in Bremen, Germany 1986/87. From 1987 on, he has been working for Deutsche Telekom AG (and its predecessor Deutsche Bundespost resp.) in Darmstadt, Bonn, and Oldenburg, Germany. For 15 years now, he has been actively involved in the area of online and internet technology and business; first with the German videotex system "Btx", later T-Online, responsible for specific technology convergence and international system bridging technology aspects but also dealing with customer side systems architecture and consulting. >From 1996 to present he has been working with the ISP Deutsche Telekom, having led the setup of the corporation's Network Information Center (which operates, e.g., the registrar DT) in its present form. Today he is responsible for research and development in this area as well as for developing technological strategies. With these acitivities also came the involvement in the internet policy and specifically the DNS deregulation process from its early stages on: CORE, IFWP, DNSO, ICANN.

Grote serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the gTLD Registrars Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Don Heath

Don Heath served as president and CEO of the Internet Society (ISOC) for five years, retiring in March 2001. During that time, he formed the International Ad Hoc Committee (IAHC) to look into the DNS administration and to make recommendations for its future. The results of that effort led to a series of additional activities including the processes which ultimately produced ICANN. He has spoken on many of the key issues affecting the Internet and supports a robust, but limited, ICANN. Heath spent his entire career, spanning 40 years, in the computer and telecommunications industries. Prior to his work with ISOC, Heath was COO of Transaction Network Services; Vice President of Data Marketing for MCI; president and COO of XtraSoft; Vice President of Operations for Tymnet; and 15 years with Sperry Univac.

Heath serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the gTLD Registry Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Didier Kasole

Didier Kasole is an ICT Consultant and Chief Technology Officer of Roffe Hitech Internet Service Provider in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Mr. Kasole also chairs the Democratic Republic of Congo Internet Society Chapter, and is a founding member of the Internet Service Provider Association Democratic Republic of Congo. He also is an active member of the African Network Operator Group, and is an Instructor at Afnog workshops. Previously, Mr. Kasole maintained the Aftld (African Top Level Domains) mailing list, and he has been in the forefront of the development of the Internet in Congo Universities. He has a Master of Science Physics from the University of Kinshasa, and is fluent in French, English, Swahili, and Lingala. His home town is Kinshasa.

Mr. Kasole serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Ram Mohan

Cedarampattu ("Ram") Mohan is Vice President, Business Operations & Chief Technology Officer of Afilias Limited, the registry services provider for the .ORG domain and operator of the .INFO domain. Prior to Afilias, Ram was at Infonautics where he co-founded CompanySleuth, Electric Library and Ram was in leadership positions at First Data Corporation, Unisys Corporation and KPMG India prior to Infonautics.

Ram is actively involved in various policy and standards-making bodies, including the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the ICANN Security and Stability Committee, the Whois Task Force, and the IDN Registry Implementation Committee. Ram serves on the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Career Center, and advises several Philadelphia-area technology companies, and is actively involved in cancer-related nonprofits.

Ram has a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Mangalore, India an MBA in Entrepreneurial Management from Bharathidasan University, India and is completing a second Master’s in Computer Science at Philadelphia’s Drexel University.

Ram serves as the non-voting liaison to the Nominating Committee appointed by the ICANN Security and Stability Advisory Committee.

Mike Roberts

Mike Roberts was the first President and CEO of ICANN, serving from 1998 to 2001. Previously he was a founder and the first Director of the Internet2 project in the United States. His professional career has been in computing and networking in higher education in the United States, where he has been widely published and has served in management and as a Director of many non-profit organizations associated with the Internet.

Roberts serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, representing small business users, selected by the Business Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Michael St. Johns

Michael St. Johns has over a quarter century of experience in all facets of Computer Networking, Architecture and Systems design. In the early days of the Internet, he was responsible for managing the development of the devices that made the then 30 to 200 network Internet work. Since then he's been involved in a number of projects to extend the reach and usability of networking. This included managing a wide-scale research program in computer networking at the US Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the agency that started the Internet. Most recently he's directed Internet projects at start-ups like Entera/CacheFlow Inc and Excite@Home.

Mr. St. Johns is a retired US Air Force Major. He holds a BS degree in Computer Science from Illinois Institute of Technology, and a MS degree in Information and Computer Science from Georgia Tech. He is currently employed as Director, Network Implementation Strategies for Nominum, Inc. He is an active, long-term participant and technical contributor within the Internet Engineering Task Force and a current member of the Internet Architecture Board.

Mr. St. Johns serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the Internet Architecture Board.

Marc Schneiders

Marc Schneiders studied Divinity, History and Celtic in Utrecht (Netherlands). Subsequently he did research on the history of the early Irish church. At present he works parttime for a university, and as a writer and consultant. He was a candidate in the 2000 At Large
elections, a member of the Names Council task force on the .ORG redelegation, and is now a member of the AdCom of the Non-Commercial Users Constituency of ICANN. He also operates nameservers. His interests are in both the technical and political aspects of the DNS.

Schneiders serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, representing consumer and civil society groups, selected by the Non-Commercial Users Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

Tony Staley

The Hon. Tony Staley is currently the Independent Chair of the .au Domain Administration (auDA). He is a former Minister for Communications in the Australian Government, and is currently involved in variety of business and community Boards and Committees including: Chairman of the Council of the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman Scheme; Chairman of the Council of the National Museum of Australia; and President of the Governing Board of Australian Photonics Cooperative Research Centre.

Mr. Staley serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, appointed by the ICANN Board as the delegate of the country-code top-level domain registries.

Antonio Tavares

Antonio Tavares lives in São Paulo, Brasil. Owner of an ISP company since 1993, Tavares is the ISP representative to the Brazilian Internet Steering Committee, a national council named by the government of Brazil for local Internet governance. He has been a founder and President of ABRANET, the National Association of ISPs for 5 years, and remains a member of its Superior Council. Previously, Tavares worked for VIA NET.WORKS for 3 years, living in the USA.

Tavares serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the Internet Service Providers Constituency of the Generic Names Supporting Organization.

German Valdez

German Valdez is Director & Coordinator of Public Policy Development for LACNIC.

Valdez graduated as a Computer Systems Engineer from the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM) back in 1994. He is a candidate to the Sciences Master Program in Information Technologies Management offered by the same institution. Since 1995, he has been working for different telecommunication companies in Mexico, deeply involved on the start up and development of this sector in Mexico. From 1998 to date, he runs the IP Addresses Coordination of Mexico's Network Information Center - NIC MX. His major responsibility there is to administer the IP addresses space and assign IP addresses to organizations formally established inside Mexico.

He is also responsible to coordinate the development of the Domain Names Policies under the Country Code Top Level Domain .mx. For 2 years, he was an active member of ICANN Address Council, representing the Latin American region. He is also a founding member of the Board of Directors from the Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry (LACNIC), where he is responsible to coordinate the proposal and development of public policies in order to assure the efficient assignment of Internet resources for the Latin American and Caribbean community.

Valdez serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the Council of the Address Supporting Organization.

Danny Weitzner

Daniel Weitzner is Director of the World Wide Web Consortium's Technology and Society activities. As such, he is responsible for development of technology standards that enable the web to address social, legal, and public policy concerns such as privacy, free speech, protection of minors, authentication, intellectual property and identification. He is also the W3C's chief liaison to public policy communities around the world, and was a member of the ICANN Protocol Supporting Organization's Protocol Council.

As one of the leading figures in the Internet public policy community, he was the first to advocate user control technologies such as content filtering and rating to protect children and avoid government censorship of the Intenet. These arguments played a critical role in the 1997 US Supreme Court case, Reno v. ACLU, awarding the highest free speech protections to the Internet. He successfully advocated for adoption of amendments to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act creating new privacy protections for online transactional information such as Web site access logs.

Weitzner holds a research appointment at MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science and teaches Internet public policy at MIT.

Before joining the W3C, Mr. Weitzner was co-founder and Deputy Director of the Center for Democracy and Technology, a leading Internet civil liberties organization in Washington, DC. He was also Deputy Policy Director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Mr. Weitzner has a degree in law from Buffalo Law School, and a B.A. in Philosophy from Swarthmore College.

His publications on communications policy have appeared in the Yale Law Review, Global Networks, MIT Press, Computerworld, Wired Magazine, Social Research, Electronic Networking: Research, Applications & Policy, and The Whole Earth Review. He is also a commentator for NPR's Marketplace Radio.

Mr. Weitzner serves as a voting member of the Nominating Committee, selected by the ICANN Technical Liaison Group.

Christopher Richard Wilkinson

Christopher Wilkinson is Head of the Secretariat for the ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC). He was a GAC Vice Chair, 2001-2002. He is Adviser, Internet Governance at the Directorate General for Information Society. Since January 2003 the GAC Secretariat is based in the European Commission, Brussels.

Christopher Wilkinson was born in Fujian, China in 1941. After returning to England in 1951 he was educated in Yorkshire and at Cambridge university, where he took degrees in Natural Science and Economics. He studied management at the London Business School (1971) and international relations at Harvard (1982-83). He taught economics in London (1962-63) and the College of Europe (1989-90). He speaks French and Spanish.

Following a career with the Commonwealth Secretariat, OECD and the World Bank, including periods living in Madrid and Lagos, he joined the European Commission as Head of Division in 1973. There, he managed several Divisions dealing with regional development, industrial policy and international, economic and technological aspects of the information society. He participated in the first EU exploratory missions on science and technology cooperation to Hungary, Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union (1990). He led the European Commission delegation to the ITU World Radio Conference (1992).

Since 1996, as Adviser in the Directorate General for Information Society (DG XIII), he has been closely associated with the reform of the DNS and the creation of ICANN and GAC. In 1998 he was nominated in his personal capacity by the Internet Society as a member of the Policy Oversight Committee (POC) of the gTLD MOU.

In his capacity as Head of the GAC Secretariat, Mr. Wilkinson has been designated to serve as the GAC's non-voting liaison to the Nominating Committee.

Linda S. Wilson (Chair)

B.A. Newcomb College, Tulane University; Ph.D. in Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Honorary doctorates from University of Maryland, and Tulane University. Former Vice President for Research, University of Michigan and President Emerita, Radcliffe College, Harvard University.

Linda has contributed long service on national committees in the United States addressing research and development, and university-industry-government relationships. She has extensive experience on governing boards of non-profit and for-profit organizations. Currently, she is a member of: Board of Directors, ICANN; Board of Administrators, Tulane University; Board of Directors, Myriad Genetics, Inc.; Board of Directors, Inacom, Inc.; Board of Advisors for Dean of Letters and Sciences, University of Wisconsin; Dean's Advisory Council, Newcomb College; and Board of Trustees, Committee on Economic Development. She is an Elected Member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences; Fellow of the American Association for Advancement of Science; and American Chemical Society.

Linda serves as the non-voting Chair of the Nominating Committee, appointed by the ICANN Board.

Pindar Wong (Associate Chair)

Pindar Wong is Chairman of VeriFi (Hong Kong) Ltd., an Internet infrastructure consultancy. Since co-founding Hong Kong's first licensed Internet Service Provider (ISP) in 1993, Pindar has remained actively involved with helping to develop and promote the Internet in the Asia Pacific region.

Currently, he is interested in the stability and evolution of the Domain Name System (DNS), the development of internet exchange points, the promotion of rural networking and encouraging internet entreprenuership for the youth. He serves as the Vice-Chairman of the Business Domain for the ITU's Telecom World 2003 and is on the Steering Committee for the Youth Forum. He also serves on the technical advisory board of the Packet Clearing House, the international advisory boards of the UNDP Asia-Pacific Development Information Programme, the advisory board of CDT's Global Internet Policy Initiative and the Asia Pacific Networking Group, the editorial advisory board of Cisco System's Internet Protocol Journal. Pindar is also an Associate member of Orbicom Network - the international network of UNESCO Chairs in Communications.

Previously, he has served as Chairman of the Asia Pacific Internet Association, the Executive Committee Chairman of the Asia Pacific Regional Internet Conference on Operational Technologies, the alternate chair of the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre. He was appointed by the Internet Architecture Board to the Policy Oversight Committee and served as the Vice Chairman of ICANN's Board of Directors and the At Large Study Committee.

Prior to his involvement in commercial Internet services, he was a doctoral candidate and Sir Edward Youde research fellow at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. Before gaining his doctoral fellowship, Mr. Wong was briefly a banker after graduating with first class honors in computing science from the Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine.

His interests include photography and the Internet.

Pindar serves as the non-voting Associate Chair of the Nominating Committee, appointed by the Chair.

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."