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*Wikimedia Foundation welcomes Eileen Hershenov as General Counsel *

*Experienced general counsel brings nearly three decades of leadership in
media, intellectual property, civil liberties, and not-for-profit law*

(San Francisco, California) May 16, 2017 - The Wikimedia Foundation is
pleased to announce that Eileen Hershenov has joined the organization as
General Counsel. Eileen brings nearly 30 years of experience in media and
intellectual property law, civil rights and civil liberties law,
not-for-profit law and governance, and privacy and cyber-security.
Throughout her career, she has worked with mission-driven organizations to
promote equality, free expression, and openness.

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that supports
Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia projects. Together, Wikipedia and the
Wikimedia projects are visited by more than a billion unique devices every
month. The Wikimedia Foundation is driven by its mission to build a world
in which every single person can freely share in the sum of all human

As General Counsel, Eileen will lead an experienced team of attorneys and
public policy experts to defend the Wikimedia projects, communities, and
Foundation. She will be responsible for maintaining and developing the
legal infrastructure, policy, and relevant legal defenses for the Wikimedia
Foundation. She will also advise the Foundation on ethical and policy
positions around access to knowledge, freedom of speech, privacy,
copyright, and other issues relevant to the Wikimedia movement.

“Eileen is deeply committed to the values that make the Wikimedia movement
possible: free expression, access to knowledge, and a secure, open
internet,” said Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia
Foundation. “Her knowledge, passion, and leadership make her an excellent
addition to the Wikimedia Foundation and our global community.”

Previously, Eileen served as the founding general counsel for Consumers
Union, the not-for-profit publisher of Consumer Reports magazine and In that role, in addition to defending against legal
attacks on the organization’s product reviews and investigative journalism,
she was part of the executive leadership team charged with rethinking the
organization’s approach to public policy and advocacy. Eileen supported the
work of tens of thousands of volunteers who advocated for healthcare reform
and net neutrality, among other issues. She also played a lead role in
developing and implementing Consumer Reports’ evolving business policies,
which are designed to ensure and protect the organization’s independence
from commercial influence and special interests.

Prior to joining Consumers Union, Eileen spent 11 years at the Open Society
Foundations, where she served as General Counsel to the global foundation
network. In this position, Eileen led the development of an in-house legal
counsel department, overseeing the legal work of the foundations in more
than 30 countries. Her work with the Open Society Foundations supported the
efforts of local advocates in the former Soviet Union, Central Europe, as
well as in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. During her time at the Open
Society Foundations, Eileen also served as the founding general counsel for
Central European University, the first U.S.-accredited liberal arts
university located in a former communist country.

“Wikimedia is a shining example of what’s possible when the values of the
free and open internet are preserved,” Eileen said. “I’ve spent much of my
career supporting many of the same principles that have allowed Wikipedia
to flourish. I’m thrilled to join a global movement of people who are
committed to these values.”

Eileen began her career in public interest as an organizer and advocate for
victims of toxic substances who were denied court access to seek
restitution. Her legal work for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
marked the start of her passion for supporting free expression, free
access, and freedom of association. She currently serves on the boards of a
number of public interest justice organizations, including the advisory
board of the Future of Privacy Forum, and the governing board of the
Appleseed Foundation.

Eileen received her BA in Economics from Yale College, and graduated from
Yale Law School. She currently lives in the state of New York with her
family, and will be relocating to the Bay Area this summer.

*About the Wikimedia Foundation*
The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that supports and
operates Wikipedia and its sister free knowledge projects. Wikipedia is the
world’s free knowledge resource, spanning more than 40 million articles
across nearly 300 languages. Every month, more than 200,000 people edit
Wikipedia and the Wikimedia projects, collectively creating and improving
knowledge that is accessed by more than 1 billion unique devices every
month. This all makes Wikipedia one of the most popular web properties in
the world. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation is
a 501(c)(3) charity funded primarily through donations and grants.

*About Wikipedia*
Wikipedia is the world’s free knowledge resource. It is a collaborative
creation that has been added to and edited by millions of people from
around the globe since it was created in 2001: anyone can edit it, at any
time. Wikipedia is offered in hundreds of languages containing a total of
more than 40 million articles. Wikimedia and its sister projects are the
largest collection of free knowledge in human history.

*Wikimedia Foundation press contact*
Juliet Barbara
(415) 839-6885

*Samantha Lien*
Communications Manager
Wikimedia Foundation
149 New Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
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