Axel Pawlik has been Managing Director of RIPE NCC for 20 years. Over that period of time the organisation and the internet has changed dramatically. As MD of an organisation primarily concerned with IP addresses and networks he’s overseen the transition from an IPv4 world to one where IPv6 should be the norm (it still isn’t!). Over the past 20 years a lot of things have happened and I’m sure Axel would have some fascinating insights into it all.
Yesterday Axel announced at the RIPE meeting in Rotterdam that he was stepping down as MD. While the Executive Board of RIPE works on finding a replacement for Axel the organisation will be managed by Gwen van Berne (CFO), Kaveh Ranjbar (CIO) and Felipe Victolla Silveira (COO).
Here’s the full announcement:
Today, at the RIPE 79 Meeting in Rotterdam, Axel Pawlik announced that
he would step down as Managing Director of the RIPE NCC. Axel’s
announcement comes 20 years to the day since he joined the organisation.
The Executive Board would like to extend its sincere gratitude to Axel
for his outstanding service to the RIPE NCC membership and the RIPE
community over the past two decades. The RIPE NCC had 1,600 members in
1999 when Axel joined, and during his tenure the organisation has grown
to well over 20,000 members. This massive increase corresponds with the
growth of the Internet into a tool that is essential to billions of
people around the world. Axel’s assured leadership meant that the RIPE
NCC was more than able to meet the challenges involved in that growth.
As the Internet grew, new actors became involved in the Internet
ecosystem, and Axel embraced the role of representing the technical
community to governments and intergovernmental organisations, making the
voice of our community heard at the highest levels. He worked closely
with RIPE Chairs Rob Blokzijl and Hans Petter Holen to develop the RIPE
community as it not only grew but also incorporated new participants,
developed new topics for discussion, and dealt with no small amount of
contentious issues that needed to be addressed professionally and
Axel was also integral to efforts to grow technical communities
throughout our service region, and he was instrumental in the
establishment of the ENOG, MENOG and SEE communities. He is personally
proud of the RIPE NCC’s efforts to accommodate the voices of everyone
who is interested in the development of the Internet.
Axel’s very first Managing Director’s Report in 2000 concluded with “…
we look forward to continue working on the solid foundation of the RIPE
NCC principles of neutrality, impartiality and openness to serve the
Internet community and especially the RIPE NCC membership.”
Axel continued to make this the core sentiment of the RIPE NCC for 20
years. For this, and for so much more, we thank Axel and we look forward
to his continued involvement in our community.
The Executive Board will quickly start the process of recruiting a new
Managing Director. In the meantime, the Board has appointed a new
Management Team of Gwen van Berne (CFO), Kaveh Ranjbar (CIO) and Felipe
Victolla Silveira (COO), who will lead the RIPE NCC and ensure there is
continuity of service and operations during the interim period.
Best of luck to Axel in his new adventures, whatever they might be!