Working directly with Mozilla Executive Chair Mitchell Baker, this role is part strategic thought partner; part chief of staff and part alliance builder, both within and beyond Mozilla. A key function: helping Mitchell think through ‘what’s important and what’s possible?’ across the whole scope of Mozilla, and then figuring out how to rally resources and people to make it happen. The successful candidate could be an experienced chief of staff, a seasoned player from the open internet space or even a former tech exec looking to have renewed impact on the world.
Mozilla is the global technology not-for-profit dedicated to building the Internet as a global public resource, open and accessible to all. Mozilla is best known for making Firefox. Mozilla also engages in a range of additional activities aimed at building a healthy internet and supporting the community of people taking action to do so.
Mozilla programs are quite varied. They include: products and technologies that allow people to take control of their internet-connected lives; public policy programs that influence governments worldwide to adopt practices like net neutrality; internet standards and protocols programs that ensure the internet remains a level playing field for consumers and businesses alike; leadership development programs for individuals working on making the Internet a healthier environment; and advocacy programs to assist individuals in making their voices heard.
Structurally, Mozilla is made up of two parts: the not-for-profit Mozilla Foundation (“the Foundation”) and the Mozilla Corporation (“the Corporation”). The Corporation is a wholly owned, taxable subsidiary that serves the non-profit, public benefit goals of the Foundation. The Corporation is responsible for product development, marketing and distribution of Mozilla products, and the bulk of related technical programs. The Foundation acts as a champion and support system for people around the world who are working for a healthier internet by offering fellowships, running citizen campaigns and publishing an annual Internet Health Report. These activities mutually supportive and aim towards the same mission, as set out in the Mozilla Manifesto.
Mitchell Baker, Co-Founder of Mozilla
Mitchell Baker is the co-founder of Mozilla and the board chair for both the Mozilla Corporation and its parent the Mozilla Foundation.
Mitchell plays a number of roles that have developed over the course of 20 years leading the Mozilla Project. This includes: acting as the most senior public voice and representative of Mozilla as a whole; guiding the long range scope, vision and culture of Mozilla; and serving as the ‘Pan Mozilla’ link between the different organizations within the broader Mozilla Project.
Mitchell also serves as the chair of both the Mozilla Foundation and Mozilla Corporation, playing a lead in the governance of both organizations. In addition to these roles within Mozilla, Mitchell is a leading public voice and champion within the open internet community. She has received numerous awards and recognition, including the 2018 Webby Lifetime Achievement Award, induction into the Internet Society’s Hall of Fame founding cohort in 2012, the Aenne Burda Award for Creative Leadership in 2010, and the Anita Borg Institute’s 2009 Women of Vision Award. Mitchell co-chaired the from its inception in March 2016 until August 2017, served on the United Nations High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment, and the ICANN High Level Panel on Global Internet Cooperation and Governance Mechanisms.
The Office of the Chair
The Office of the Chair (“OOTC”) is a small group that works directly with Mitchell on matters that pan the whole scope of Mozilla. It currently includes four broad areas of activity:
1. Weaving all parts of Mozilla into a whole.
Mitchell is broadly chartered with the overall direction and scope of Mozilla, and with the relationship between Mozilla Corporation and Mozilla Foundation. This includes: creation and structure of Mozilla organizations; operating models between the Mozilla Foundation and Mozilla Corporation; decisions as to whether the overall scope of Mozilla matches the needs and opportunities of the times. Work of this scope is identified as “Pan Mozilla.”
2. Continued integration of Mozilla values into our culture, management, leadership and technology.
In the past this has included identifying the need for the Mozilla Manifesto, the Mozilla Manifesto Addendum, and the Community Participation Guidelines, which set out our commitment to diversity and inclusion and also function as our Code of Conduct. In the future this may include designing the application of the Manifesto and Addendum to day-to-day activities. It might include development of operating values that reflect the expanded Manifesto. In the past this has included Mozilla’s commitment to open-source and community -based process through the Mozilla Open Source Software award program. In the future it may also include new ways of integrating our values into our work.
3. Represent Mozilla and its values to the world.
Mitchell is a key spokesperson for Mozilla, with extensive speaking engagements, press interactions, and participation in a range of policy and thought leadership activities. The Chief, Strategy & Operations, has both strategic and operational involvement in Mitchell’s public voice on behalf of Mozilla and the Open Internet. The strategic side involves the oncoming decisions about how and when and where to magnify this voice, and the operational side involves oversight of the many elements involved (e.g., PR firm, comms function, graphics designer). The breadth of topics is large and the ability to address new issues with nuance and sophistication is critical.
4. Board Related Activity.
This includes many traditional board-related activities, as well as inter-board matters. More information on the boards of directors can be found on Mozilla.org and the Mozilla wiki.
The OOTC works closely with the chief executives, board members and management of Mozilla Corporation and with its parent the Mozilla Foundation to magnify Mozilla’s impact in the world. In general this is done by designing a strategy plus a framework for action, with the bulk of execution delegated to Mozilla Foundation and / or Mozilla executives and teams . The OOTC also operates a select set of initiatives directly, with support form throughout the Mozilla organizations. It is also the home to the Pan Mozilla Committee, which includes Mitchell as well as the Mozilla Corporation CEO and the Mozilla Foundation Executive Director.
Chief, Strategy and Operations Role
The Chief of Strategy and Operations is the most senior role working within the Officer of the Chair (OOTC). The OOTC is small, and not intended to grow into a large group.
As the successful candidate, you will work hand in hand with the Executive Chairwoman in all aspects of the strategic and operational activities of the OOTC. You will oversee operations, manage outside resources and a very small team. You’ll represent the OOTC inside and outside Mozilla as appropriate.
You will be a thought partner, helping chart a path in areas where there are few clear models. You will be a master at turning broad brush-strokes and strategic goals into an operational plan and implementing and will own the subsequent implementation. You’ll bring strong analytic skills to nuanced, multi-faceted ideas. You appreciate creativity and thrive at adding structure. You will be comfortable working collaboratively in a cross-functional fashion.
Much of the work of the OOTC is carried out in conjunction with other executive functions. A key aspect of this role is being able to work well with the C-level execs and at the same time work with their teams without relying on hierarchy.
- Serve as key strategist and thought partner for the Chairwoman in initiating, developing and evolving strategies and initiatives.
- Prototype and implement long- and short-range OOTC initiatives such as those described above. Examples might include: exploring whether Mozilla ought charter some new form of activity or organization to help fulfill our mission; or, developing a coalition of senior government and industry leaders to champion a big idea or policy, such as the introduction of ethics and humanities into STEM curriculum.
- Run the Pan Mozilla Committee, the structure through which the Chairwoman, Mozilla Foundation Executive Director and Mozilla Corporation CEO coordinated on strategic, Mozilla-wide topics. This includes leading strategic initiatives with the Chairwoman. For example, updating the operating model or combined strategic focus across the operating model across the Foundation and Corporation in org to point more of the whole organization’s energy at a specific, high impact goal.
- Act as proxy and extension of presence for the executive chair when appropriate. Serve as a public face for Mozilla and the OOTC. For example, attend meetings of senior government or corporate officials on behalf of the Chairwoman.
- Oversee operational aspects of Executive Chairwoman’s thought leadership, visibility and governance work. Also, manage planning and budget, goal setting and human resources of the small OOTC team.
Skills and Experience
- The person who takes on this role will have a truly unique set of experiences and skills spanning technology; business; community; policy and organizational leadership.
- As a foundation, they will need a deep understanding and passion for the internet, “open internet” topics, and the internet’s effect on individuals and societies. Ideally, they will already know of Mozilla in some way.
- They will also be exceptional skill at turning broad brush-strokes and strategic goals into an operational plan, and then rallying resources and building alliances to make them happen. This a person with a proven track record of leading large projects across complex organizations and ecosystems and getting everyone involved to commit and get things done. They have a high facility with collaboration, strong discretion, judgment, and diplomacy.
- In terms of experience, they could could be an experienced chief of staff, a seasoned player from the open internet space or even a former tech exec looking to have renewed impact on the world. They will be either mid- or late- career, with 15+ years experience demonstrating the skills listed above, or will have some other particular experience that makes a strong fit for this role. A strong technical background with ability to get hands-on with products would also be beneficial.
Mozilla exists to build the Internet as a public resource accessible to all because we believe that open and free is better than closed and controlled. When you work at Mozilla, you give yourself a chance to make a difference in the lives of Web users everywhere. And you give us a chance to make a difference in your life every single day. Join us to work on the Web as the platform and help create more opportunity and innovation for everyone online.
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