In a shock announcement, the Board of Directors of .ORG the Public Interest Registry announced today that Alexa Raad, the President and Chief Executive Officer of PIR, has decided to resign from her positions with the company effective on September 24th, 2010. Her resignation concludes 3 1/2 years of service and leadership at PIR.Ms Raad will be replaced by Maarten Botterman, current chairman of the board, as an interim CEO while PIR seeks a full time replacement.Under Ms. Raad’s leadership, PIR’s .ORG base grew by 42 per cent, from 5.5 million to over 8.5 million registrations of .ORG domains. As a result of that growth, .ORG now also leads the industry in terms of the numbers of users that retain .ORG domains after the first and subsequent years. Moreover, during Ms. Raad’s tenure, PIR pioneered efforts in internet security, such as PIR’s launch of DNSSEC.ORG and initiated and led industry collaboration efforts such as the DNSSEC Coalition and Registry Infrastructure Security Group to make the domain name space a safer and more secure place.”I have been fortunate to work with an extraordinary team and lead PIR through a period of change to tremendous achievement. While I remain personally committed to .ORG and its core mission, the time has come for me to seek new challenges and opportunities in the private sector,” said Alexa Raad.The board expressed its gratitude for the work of Ms Raad, with the Chairman of the board expressing his gratitude for her work and achievements.”We are grateful to Ms. Raad for all she achieved with her team over the years, renovating and growing the company from a young start-up to leading in the industry. She was the right candidate to provide a positive and focused leadership, which served PIR well. We wish her well in her future endeavors,” said Maarten Botterman, Chairman of the Board.About Interim CEOMaarten Botterman is an expert in Information Society policy issues with extensive international experience, with emphasis on the impact of technology on society and governance issues, and global information security and privacy issues. He has been on the PIR Board since January 1, 2008 and is actively involved in Internet governance development. He is founder of GNKS Consult, and has an advanced degree in Business Economics.