The NomCom provides the opportunity to all Nominees to publish a blog post here. I post this on behalf of Mirjam.
For 30 years, the RIPE Community has successfully served individuals and organisations that have an interest in the way the Internet is managed, structured and governed. It provides the neutral platform for network operators and others interested in IP networking to coordinate all aspects of networking, technical and policy related. I have been a proud, vigorously supportive member of this community in one form or another almost since its inception and would feel qualified and privileged to serve as its Chair.
For the past ten years I’ve been the Senior Community Builder at the RIPE NCC. Initially hired to set up RIPE Labs as a new, informal communication and engagement channel for the RIPE NCC, this quickly turned into a wider community building effort. In this role, I collaborated with colleagues from various communities including technical, security, academic and government, and consequently further strengthened and widened my extensive professional network. I also worked closely with IXPs and local Network Operators Groups and helped to bring them together and include them as an essential part of the larger RIPE Community.
Becoming the RIPE Chair may be seen as a continuation of my work in engaging and uniting diverse communities.
I believe it is essential to further strengthen this community and to make sure we adapt to new challenges and developments. This includes being open to new participants and stakeholders. We need to ensure we are welcoming and accessible for anyone who has an interest in IP network operations.
The respect and credibility I’ve earned over the years was achieved by being open, honest and knowledgeable, and by connecting people with different expertise or interests, technical and non-technical.
I am enthusiastic and diplomatic. I can relate to and engage with different people, independent of their background and culture. Many essential tasks in the RIPE community are done by volunteers such as chairing RIPE Working Groups and being on the RIPE Meeting Programme Committee. Throughout my entire career I’ve worked with these and other volunteers and I know what it means to drive people forward and encourage them to do what they are good at. I developed strong leadership qualities and I’ve been a role model for others, especially younger colleagues.
Our RIPE Chairs Rob Blokzijl and Hans Petter Holen have inspired me enormously by their examples to guide and develop the community. Working with them has provided me a full understanding of the role of RIPE Chair and its responsibilities.
More recently I was the main contact for Hans Petter Holen supporting him in his RIPE Chair-related activities. I also worked closely with the RIPE WG Chairs and the RIPE PC, for instance by providing training.
The RIPE NCC and RIPE are separate entities. Should I be selected as the RIPE Chair, I would therefore take a leave of absence from my role at the RIPE NCC.
Being part of the RIPE Community has inspired my career path, and I’ve made many friends within it over the years. Its underlying goals and principles of an open, resilient and sustainable Internet match with my core beliefs, and I am passionate about the people who defend those goals.
I obtained a Masters of Computer Science at the Technical University Berlin, Germany.