News

Wikimedia Foundation welcomes Ryan Merkley as Chief of Staff to the office of the Executive Director

Ryan Merkley

Digital commons expert brings more than 15 years of experience in executive leadership and public sector strategy.

The Wikimedia Foundation is pleased to announce that Ryan Merkley will be joining the organization as the new Chief of Staff to the office of the Executive Director. Ryan joins the Foundation from Creative Commons, the nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding the availability, re-sharing, and accessibility of creative works, where he served for five years as Chief Executive Officer. While there, he led the collaborative development of Creative Commons’ (CC) five-year strategic plan, the Global Network revitalization, and built a more sustainable organization.

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that operates Wikipedia and other free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single person can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. Together, Wikipedia and the Wikimedia projects are visited by 1.5 billion unique devices every month from around the world. “Ryan has been a champion of the open movement and a longtime partner in building the sustainable digital commons,” said Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation. “His leadership experience and deep expertise in open communities will be invaluable to the Wikimedia movement as we prepare for this next phase of our mission.”

As Chief of Staff, Ryan will enact strategic initiatives originating from the office of the Executive Director. First among these will be to support the Wikimedia 2030 movement strategy, including the implementation of recommendations from the global Wikimedia community to evolve Wikimedia’s structures and systems. Ryan will also take up the role of Board liaison, ensuring smooth and effective functioning of board initiatives and communications between Trustees and Wikimedia Foundation staff. He will be the leader on special interdepartmental projects as they arise, and support the office of the Executive Director with decision-making and operational efficiency.

“I’m thrilled to join the Wikimedia team as Chief of Staff,” Ryan said. “It’s never been more urgent to provide trusted, free knowledge to every person. With its strong commitment to independence, neutrality, and transparency, Wikimedia wields tremendous public trust to help communities around the world. The Wikimedia movement’s goals are ambitious, and I can’t wait to help realize them.”

Prior to his work at CC, Ryan was Chief Operating Officer of Mozilla, served as Director of Corporate Communications for the City of Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Games, and was a Senior Advisor to Mayor David Miller in Toronto, where he led the Mayor’s budget policy and initiated Toronto’s Open Data project. Ryan is an experienced campaigner and advocate for social causes, and has advised political campaigns at the local and national levels. He is an affiliate of the Harvard Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society for the 2019–2020 academic year.

Ryan lives in Toronto, where he will be based, with his daughter, his wife Kelsey, and their dog Barkley. He will join the Wikimedia Foundation on 16 September.

Related — 有關

Read further in the pursuit of knowledge

Wikimedia Foundation welcomes Amanda Keton as General Counsel

Communications Foundation Legal

The Wikimedia Foundation is excited to announce the appointment of Amanda Keton as General Counsel. Amanda brings more than a decade of legal, nonprofit management, and compliance experience to the role. She will join the organization on 7 October. The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that operates Wikipedia and other free knowledge projects. Together,….

Read more
Grant Ingersoll

Wikimedia Foundation welcomes Grant Ingersoll as Chief Technology Officer

Communications Foundation Technology

The Wikimedia Foundation is excited to announce the appointment of Grant Ingersoll as Chief Technology Officer (CTO). Grant brings two decades of experience in open source software development and natural language processing engineering to the Foundation. He will join the Foundation on 23 September. The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that operates Wikipedia and….

Read more
Robyn Arville

Wikimedia Foundation welcomes Robyn Arville as Chief Talent and Culture Officer

Communications Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is excited to announce the appointment of Robyn Arville as Chief Talent and Culture Officer (CTCO). Robyn brings 20 years of experience in human resources to the Foundation, most recently as the Head of People and Culture at the Public Library of Science (PLOS), where she worked to develop PLOS’s people strategy….

Read more

Help us unlock the world’s knowledge.

As a nonprofit, Wikipedia and our related free knowledge projects are powered primarily through donations.

Donate now

Connect — Échanger

Stay up-to-date on our work.

Get email updates

Subscribe to news about ongoing projects and initiatives.

Contact a human

Questions about the Wikimedia Foundation or our projects? Get in touch with our team.

Contact