On behalf of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees I am delighted to announce that the new Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation will be Lila Tretikov. Lila is a widely respected Bay Area technology leader, most recently with SugarCRM.

Photo of incoming WMF Executive Director Lila Tretikov

Lila was born in the Soviet Union and moved to the United States as a teenager. She’s been working for technology companies, primarily in open source, in the Bay Area for the past 15 years. In 1999 she started her career at Sun Microsystems. Shortly afterwards she founded GrokDigital, a technology marketing company. She spent three years as senior director of development at Telespree, a company that provides cloud-based wireless data services for mobile carriers. For the past eight years, she was at SugarCRM, where she held positions of increasing responsibility as the organization grew, including being in charge of internal IT, marketing, customer support and professional services, engineering, and product development. She has a stellar reputation as a leader who is highly skilled, collaborative, open, passionate and curious.

The Executive Director Transition Team, chaired by me, has unanimously recommended Lila to the Board to be our next ED, and the Board has unanimously approved the recommendation. We believe she will be an excellent leader in the Wikimedia movement. She strikes us all as smart, brave and unpretentious, and we believe she has the skills the Foundation needs.

Lila is going to spend the next few weeks in learning-and-listening mode, and will take over the ED position on June 1, 2014. Her first priority will be to immerse herself in deepening her understanding of the Wikimedia projects.

I want to close this post with a heartfelt and deeply appreciative thanks to Sue Gardner, who has been the Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation for the past seven years. Sue’s leadership has built the Foundation into an effective, well-funded and well-managed organisation with integrity and a clear sense of purpose, and her steady and committed presence throughout the search process was integral in helping us come to this excellent result. We will be forever grateful for her leadership and vision, and I hope we can continue to rely on her support in the months and years ahead.

In June Sue will move into a new role as a special advisor to me and Lila. She’ll also take a well-earned holiday, and maybe even a bit of a wiki-break, before beginning to think about what she’s going to do next. Many of us will get a chance to see her in London, at Wikimania, in August.

The Wikimedia Foundation is delighted to have reached such a successful outcome to the search. My thanks to Lisa Grossman of m/Oppenheim for helping us with it, and I ask you to please join me in extending a warm welcome to Lila Tretikov, our new ED.

Jan-Bart de Vreede, Chair, Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees