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Head of ICANN to leave next year

Nadi Chehadé, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers Photo by itupictures, Geneva, Switzerland via Wikimedia Commons

Fadi Chehadé will step down as president and CEO of ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), the keeper of the Internet address system, in March 2016, ending three years in the position.

Chehadé said he plans to move into a new career “outside the domain name industry.”

During his tenure, the organization began the roll out of hundreds of new generic top level domains on the Internet, some of them revered (like new codes for countries), others reviled, like dot-sucks and dot-porn, which go live June 1, much to the joy of sites like, that now have the option of a domain more specific to their genre.

He has also presided over beginning the process to transition of the U.S. government’s stewardship of the IANA functions to ICANN, a transition which could happen as soon as September 1.

“Fadi Chehadé has served as CEO of ICANN with tireless dedication, and I greatly appreciate his ongoing commitment to improve the accountability and transparency of the organization. NTIA remains committed to the responsible and timely transition of our stewardship of the Internet Domain Name System consistent with the conditions that NTIA outlined in 2014. A successful transition does not depend on the leadership of a single individual, but rather the engagement of the global multistakeholder community working collaboratively to ensure that the Internet remains open, secure, and resilient,” said Larry Strickling, assistant secretary of Commerce for communications and information and NTIA administrator.

At the request of the ICANN board, Chehadé has agreed to help ICANN with the transition to a new leader and advise the board on the implementation of the IANA stewardship transition.