April 10th, 2013
Looking towards the future of Firefox OS
Today we are announcing changes to our executive leadership team as we build up our pivot to mobile and build upon the foundation that’s now in place to accelerate into the opportunities in front of us.
Where we started
Mozilla has always believed that the Web needs to be a place where anyone can access information, communicate, create and collaborate without boundaries or restrictions.
Firefox was introduced for desktop computers in 2004 at a time when the Web was being held hostage to proprietary interests. Under the leadership of Mitchell Baker, Brendan Eich and others, Mozilla put individuals in control of their experience for the first time, and helped shape the future of the Web for the public good as an open standards-based platform for innovation.
Pivot to mobile
In 2010, it was clear that while the desktop was an important target platform, that the future is mobile. And there was an opportunity to move people to the center of their connected experience and unlock untapped potential for innovation by enabling the Web as the platform.
With a deep background in mobile, Gary Kovacs was enlisted as CEO in October 2010 to lead the organization and establish the framework to accomplish these goals. Over the past two and a half years, we’re incredibly proud of what we have accomplished:
Building mobile DNA deep into the organization, with the launch of Firefox OS, HTML5 apps and Firefox for Android, while also creating the global, operational structure to support market growth.
Delivering at the speed of the market and competition: Firefox desktop is faster, more secure, more stable, evolving faster; launched important services with Persona and Sync and Apps marketplace and added new partnerships.
Trusted consumer advocacy in public policy debates with SOPA/PIPA, DNT and more.
At Mobile World Congress 2013, we showed the world that Mozilla was now fully a mobile organization as we announced rollout plans for Firefox OS with broad industry support and commitments from 20+ partners to bring devices to market.
Aligning for the future
With a solid foundation now in place, Mozilla is entering an exciting phase – as we launch mobile devices with our partners around the globe – and a reinvigorated mission in protecting the Internet freedoms for the next 2 billion people coming online in the coming years.
To gear up for this next chapter, we are announcing the following Mozilla Corporation leadership changes:
- Gary Kovacs, having accomplished the goals and objectives he and the team set out to achieve, will be stepping down as CEO later this year but will continue to provide vision and leadership as a member of our Board of Directors. An executive search will begin immediately for his replacement.
- Mitchell Baker has expanded her role to become our Executive Chair as she returns to a deeper involvement in Mozilla’s daily activities. She will also focus on ensuring that organizations and individual contributors have the tools they need to make meaningful contributions to unlock the potential of the Web.
- Brendan Eich will continue his recently expanded role as Chief Technology Officer & Senior Vice President of Engineering, managing the organization’s product and platform engineering teams.
- Jay Sullivan, previously SVP of Products, has been appointed Chief Operating Officer. Jay will continue to drive Mozilla’s product strategy and roadmap, to lead the product and user experience teams, and to lead the Firefox OS program. He will also take a broader role in managing Mozilla’s continued evolution and growth.
- Harvey Anderson has been appointed SVP Business and Legal Affairs. In this new role he will have oversight for the apps marketplace initiative and continue to lead mobile and strategic partnerships, public policy, and legal affairs. He will also continue to serves as Corporate Secretary.
- Li Gong has been appointed Senior Vice President, Mobile Devices, and will be tasked with leading our global work advancing the adoption of Firefox OS on mobile devices, including engagement with our device partners, as well as delivery and support for our partners. Concurrently in the role of President, Asia Operations, he is tasked to broaden the presence of Mozilla within the mobile ecosystem in the region, outside of Japan. He remains CEO of our subsidiary companies in China and Taiwan.
Mozilla is uniquely positioned to bring the full power of the web to the next 2 billion people coming online, and our public benefit nature means that we can continue to invest in the Web as an open and neutral playing field for everyone, giving both commercial players and individuals around the world the opportunity to create and innovate. Our focus will continue to be embracing this uniqueness and expanding our efforts to be the catalyst of positive change in Web ecosystem.
For more information:
- Quote from Gary Kovacs: “The past two and a half years have been pivotal in the evolution and rapid growth of Mozilla,” said Gary Kovacs, CEO. “I am very proud of our accomplishments as a team. In our mission to empower the next two billion Web users, we’ve made great advances in desktop and mobile and in our ability to lead at the pace of the market. With this solid foundation and a strong team in place, this is the right time for me to announce the transition plan and a vote of confidence in the abilities of the leadership team. I am grateful for the privilege of leading this organization during this period of rapid growth, and I look forward to helping guide Mozilla’s impact on the future of mobile.
- Quote from Mitchell Baker: “Gary’s leadership has been hugely important in helping Mozilla develop deep mobile outlook and capabilities. I want to thank Gary for all the contributions that he has made to the project during this period of our evolution. I believe that we have an incredibly strong team and organization in place to lead us in writing this next chapter of Web history,” said Mitchell Baker, Executive Chair, Mozilla. “Together we will also strive to embrace our uniqueness and non-profit core, and grow with our partners and community in new ways.”