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ICANN names Egypt-based head of Istanbul office

Kevin Murphy, August 19, 2020, 19:23:05 (UTC), Domain Policy

ICANN has appointed veteran staffer Baher Esmat as the new head of its regional office in Istanbul, Turkey.

His new job title will be managing director for Middle East and Africa, having previously headed ICANN’s partnership programs for the region. He’s basically become ICANN’s point man in the region.

He’s replacing Nick Tomasso, who’s sticking around at ICANN in his main role as VP of meetings but appears to be leaving Istanbul.

Esmat currently lives in Egypt, which isn’t even in the same time zone, and there does not appear to be a short-term plan to move him to Istanbul

The ICANN board noted in its resolution promoting Esmat:

There will be a fiscal impact on ICANN in FY21 only to the extent of travel and related costs for Mr. Esmat as he will continue to reside in Egypt for the time being, but ICANN will save on the costs associated with Mr. Tomasso’s having resided in Istanbul during his tenure as the representative of the liaison office in Turkey, Istanbul.

It’s not clear whether the decision to stay in Egypt is coronavirus-related, but I imagine working from home in Egypt isn’t much different from working from home in Turkey.

Esmat has been at ICANN for 14 years. Tomasso ran the Istanbul office from 2017. The handover is effective at the end of the month.

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Comments (3)

  1. Tom Barrett says:

    Baher is a well-suited for this role. ICANN picked a great person for this position.

  2. Anonymous staffer says:

    As a staff member who has worked closely with Baher, this is an awesome decision. Baher is a quiet, effective leader. He leads by example with his work ethic, his smarts, his people skills, and with his humility. One of my favorite people in the company.

    The good team won this time!

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