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More details on ICANN’s CEO handover

Kevin Murphy, December 28, 2022, 17:26:51 (UTC), Domain Policy

ICANN has published more information on its change of CEO, which saw Göran Marby’s shock resignation last week.

Interim CEO Sally Costerton has been employed on an automatically renewing six-month contract that will only end if she quits, is fired, or a permanent replacement is found.

The ICANN board of directors has approved a “monthly stipend”, a bonus payment while she holds the interim position, but the amount, based on advice from compensation consultancy Willis Towers Watson, was not disclosed.

In fact, Costerton’s salary has never been disclosed in the decade she has worked for the Org. It is assumed that she is paid via the UK-based company she set up with her husband around the same time she was hired by ICANN.

That company, Sally Costerton Advisory Ltd, had about £1.3 million ($1.6 million) in net assets as of March, company records, which include no income statement, show. ICANN’s tax returns, which report executive salaries, do not reflect any payments to the company.

The board’s resolutions also confirm that Marby, who will stay as a consultant until May 2024, has will have his contract renegotiated, but the terms were redacted.

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Comments (3)

  1. WebSniffer says:

    It should be mandatory for public interest organizations like ICANN to disclose the salaries of all executives, in order to promote better transparency and increase trust within the internet and domain community.

    • Steve Gobin says:

      Unless mistaken, ICANN’s annual report actually mentions some of the top executives (CEO, COO, CFO…)’ salaries and bonuses. The problem here seems to be that Costerton is not paid directly by ICANN but via an external company she set up with her husband.

      • Kevin Murphy says:

        The annual tax return does list salaries of directors and the highest-paid staff as you say, but it only lists payments to companies of over $1 million, so all we know is that Costerton has been historically paid less than that.

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