Chris Beard Named Interim CEO at Mozilla

Chris Beard
Chris Beard

Mozilla Corp. named Chris Beard as interim chief executive officer to replace Brendan Eich, who stepped down after being criticized for donating money to a group opposing same-sex marriage.

Beard is an executive in residence at venture-firm Greylock Partners and previously served as marketing chief at Mozilla, maker of the Firefox Web browser.

Eich’s resignation this month exposed a rift in Silicon Valley between support for left-leaning issues and advocacy of unrestricted freedom of expression. Beard, who will also join Mozilla as a director, has been involved with the group since it shipped the first Firefox browser.

“Chris has one of the clearest visions of how to take the Mozilla mission and turn it into programs and activities and product ideas that I have ever seen,” Mitchell Baker, executive chairwoman of Mozilla, said on Mozilla’s blog Monday.

The appointment isn’t the only link between Mozilla and Greylock. John Lilly, a Greylock partner, was previously CEO of Mozilla. Lilly was also one of three board members who resigned when Eich was named CEO on March 24. Eich stepped down less than two weeks after taking the CEO post, after being criticized for donating $1,000 to a group that favored California’s Proposition 8 to ban same-sex marriage.

Beard is also a strong candidate to become Mozilla’s CEO on a permanent basis, Baker said.

SOURCE: Peter Burrows
Bloomberg

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