Web Summit has new CEO
Former Wikipedia Foundation head Katherine Maher has been appointed the new CEO of Web Summit, replacing Paddy Cosgrave who stepped down earlier this month over his controversial statements over Israel’s bombardments in Gaza.
Paddy Cosgrave was forced to quit his post as CEO of the summit he co-founded in Dublin in 2009 after a wave of large technology giants and an avalanche of Israeli companies pulled out of this year’s Web Summit even tat runs in Lisbon between November 13-16 .
Since Paddy Cosgrave’s resignation, the company that runs the world’s larges technology and startup fair, has been run by a management team consisting of chief events officer Craig Becker; chief marketing technology officer Mike Sexton; chief operating officer Nida Shah; chief financial officer Patrick Kirwan; and chief commercial officer Kevin McDonald.
Katherine Maher was chief executive of the Wikimedia Foundation, the global non-profit behind Wikipedia, for five years and is currently the chair of the messaging platform Signal Messenger and is also a term member of the Council of Foreign Relations, a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, a security fellow at the Truman National Security Project, and a non-resident Senior Fellow on Democracy and Technology at the Atlantic Council.
Paddy Cosgrave owns an 81% share of the company behind Web Summit, but his co-founders have asked him to sell his stake to protect the company’s future and 300 jobs according to a report in the Irish Times.
“In a present where technology is interwoven into every aspect of our lives, and in a future where it represents our greatest hope and our greatest disruptor, Web Summit’s role as a place for connection and conversation is more urgent than ever,” said Katherine Maher. “Our immediate task is returning the focus to what we do best: delivering dialogue among all those connected with technological advancement.”