The Global Network Initiative Announces New Executive Director Judith Lichtenberg

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April 9, 2015  |  News

WASHINGTON, DC – The Global Network Initiative is pleased to announce that Judith Lichtenberg has been appointed as our new Executive Director.

“We are delighted to have Judith join GNI during our next phase of growth and development, to help us expand our membership and extend our influence in support of freedom of expression and privacy rights worldwide,” said GNI Board Chair Mark Stephens.

“At a challenging moment for freedom of expression and privacy rights in the ICT sector, it is an honor and a privilege to join GNI,” said Ms. Lichtenberg. “When companies join forces with each other and with civil society organizations, investors, and academics, their potential to have impact on the laws and policies that threaten rights online is multiplied considerably.”

As Executive Director, Ms. Lichtenberg will be responsible for further strengthening GNI as a global multi-stakeholder platform for freedom of expression and privacy rights in the ICT sector. Ms. Lichtenberg brings to GNI extensive experience from her private sector career in telecommunications and her work with civil society on behalf of human rights.

Before joining the GNI, Ms. Lichtenberg was Head of Regulatory Affairs & Digital Rights at Vodafone Netherlands in Amsterdam, where she worked in a variety of roles since 2008. At Vodafone Netherlands, she previously served as Head of Privacy & Sustainability and before that as Head of Legal Affairs. Prior to joining Vodafone in 2008, she was Executive Director of the Lawyers for Lawyers Foundation, a Dutch NGO on whose board she continues to serve. Her international human rights experience includes serving as an international election observer in Ukraine and Armenia, and as a law clerk with the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

Judith’s background embodies GNI’s multi-stakeholder approach,” said Robert Mahoney, GNI Board member and Deputy Director of the Committee to Protect Journalists. “Judith’s experience with privacy and law enforcement compliance give her the perspective and credibility necessary to engage with companies seeking to uphold GNI’s core principles. And her work with at-risk lawyers around the world shows her deep commitment to human rights.”

“We’re particularly pleased to have a new Executive Director whose career has spanned law, technology, and human rights, and who brings to GNI both experience and enthusiasm to tackle the challenges facing ICT companies at the intersection of these issues,” said Bennett Freeman, Secretary of the Board of GNI.

Ms. Lichtenberg will begin her role at GNI on April 13, and will be based in Amsterdam, with regular travel to the United States and around the world.

“It is a natural next step in GNI’s evolution as a truly global network for our new Executive Director to be based outside of the United States and bringing an international perspective to our work,” said Steve Crown, GNI Board member and Vice President and Deputy General Counsel at Microsoft.

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