Hi all, I’m excited to officially welcome Grant Ingersoll as our Chief Technology Officer! Grant will be starting September 23. He’ll be based in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Grant comes from a long history of working on open source projects. Most recently, he served as the Chief Technical Officer of Lucidworks, an AI-powered open-source search services company which he co-founded. He is a Lucene and Solr committer, co-founder of the Apache Mahout machine learning project, and a long-standing member of the Apache Software Foundation. He’s an author, having written a book for Java developers on how to wrangle unstructured text for search, text-mining, and the like. He’s also a long-time, committed remotee, having worked with the distributed Lucidworks team from his home in North Carolina for nearly a decade. In Grant’s own words, “The power of learning and knowledge have always stood as key pillars in my career. I'm a big believer that access to free, trusted knowledge is of vital importance as society looks to tackle large scale challenges. My wife, Robin, and I recently moved from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, our home for 10 years, to Charlotte, North Carolina, where our daughter lives. We also just dropped our son off at college for his freshman year. We're adjusting to the empty nest life with our dog Allie (a black lab mix). When not traveling or exploring Charlotte, I can usually be found on a bike, out kayaking, or writing code.” Grant will be working with myself, Erika Bjune (who is transitioning to VP, Technology), and others in the leadership of the technology department to determine a set of priorities for his first year. I expect these will likely focus around evaluating our current capacities and co-creating a vision for the continued evolution of our technical platforms, supporting the staff of the department, working with the finance and operations folks on planning and budgeting for the future, and of course, getting to know our technical community and the broader movement. Under Grant’s leadership, we will continue the work of improving and modernizing our technical ecosystem to respond to our future needs, as laid out in the movement strategy. I’m thrilled to have the CTO role filled, and to bring Grant in at a time when the movement is digging into the question of what it means to “become the essential infrastructure of free knowledge.” From our first meeting, I was struck by his curiosity. He was genuinely interested in how Wikimedia works, and was willing to get into what I often think of “Wiki PhD” level conversations about the nuances of our community and values. I have generally found that the folks who bring that sort of openness and humility to their work are the folks who thrive in the challenges of our mission and movement. As our movement expands, I’m glad to have Grant’s experience, curiosity, and passion for building things on board here at the Foundation. I want to also thank Erika Bjune for her work as interim CTO. She passionately advocated for the importance of our platforms, embodied partnership and cooperation, and her expertise on the interview panel was invaluable. I’m thrilled she’ll be working so closely with Grant as we move forward. Please join me in welcoming Grant to the Wikimedia Foundation! Katherine -- Katherine Maher (she/her) Executive Director Wikimedia Foundation <https://wikimediafoundation.org/>
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