ICANN Monday announced that Baher Esmat has been appointed Managing Director for the Middle East and Africa (MEA) office in Istanbul, Turkey. He is replacing Nick Tomasso who has served as Managing Director for MEA since 2017 in addition to his role as Vice President, Global Meeting Operations, in which he will continue to serve.
Esmat is taking on this responsibility in addition to his role as Vice President, Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, which he has held since 2012. Esmat will continue to report to Sally Costerton, Senior Advisor to President & Senior Vice President, Global Stakeholder Engagement.
Esmat joined ICANN in 2006 as Regional Manager, Global Partnerships, Middle East. During his 14-year tenure at ICANN org, he has led the organization’s engagement efforts in the Middle East and overseen the development of regional engagement plans.
In his new role, Esmat will be responsible for the day-to-day management of the regional office in Istanbul. He will work with its functional teams to facilitate engagement and outreach activities in the region and ensure that the office serves the MEA region needs in alignment with ICANN’s 2021-2025 strategic plan.
Prior to joining ICANN, Esmat worked in public and private organizations, and led efforts to advance telecommunication infrastructure and Internet services in Egypt and the Middle East. He began his career as a network engineer and contributed to the introduction of the Internet in Egypt in the 1990s. He also worked for Newbridge Networks and was part of its regional pre-sales team developing technical solutions for telecom operators and ISPs across the Middle East. He later joined the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology of Egypt and led the planning of key national infrastructure projects and Internet Governance related work. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering from Cairo University, and a Master’s degree in Computer Science from the American University in Cairo.
ICANN’s mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique, so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.