The DNA Leadership
The Current DNA Board of Directors
Joe Alagna, Afilias
Joe is a Director of Business Development at Afilias, best known for technology that supports a wide range of top level domains on the Internet. Specifically, Afilias runs the master directories and DNS for over 25 top level domains including .info, .pro, .mobi, and .green. Afilias is also the provider of choice operating back-end registry services for some of the world’s largest generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs) and country-codes (ccTLDs). These include, .org, .me, .in, and many others.
Prior to joining Afilias, Joe was the V.P. of Channel Development for 101domain.com, an international domain name registrar that specializes in ccTLDs , global brand development, and the new generic Top Level Domains. Earlier in his career, Joe was a National Accounts Manager for AT&T Wireless (LA Cellular property). He was responsible for the first mobile phone website ever online. That website eventually morphed into AT&T’s expansive online wireless business. As General Manager of North American markets for the London based registry, CentralNic, from 2001 until 2013, Joe spearheaded their Personal Net Names division which eventually became the model for their primary back-end registry service for new top level domains. CentralNic recently went public on the London Stock Exchange.
Joe has spoken for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN), The Direct Marketing Association, The Domain Name Conference, NamesCon, and several Targeted Traffic Conferences. He has also taught online marketing for the SBA and several Small Business Development Centers in Southern California. He is an avid domain name enthusiast with first-hand experience in several realms of the industry including registries, registrars, domainers, and resellers.
Joe enjoys posting interesting industry news on his personal blog, http://alagna.com. A Chicago native, he now resides in Southern California with his wife, Christine. In his spare time, he likes to read, dance, and mostly, spend time with his family.
Alvaro Alvarez, Donuts
Alvaro Alvarez provides Donuts legal counsel on its most important strategic and tactical initiatives. Alvaro has over twenty years of experience working with Internet-focused enterprises, including almost six years at Donuts, where he has helped to build its core businesses and expand its reach via acquisition, internal development, and investments in other technology companies. Prior to Donuts, Alvaro served as a senior International Business associate at Perkins Coie LLP, where he represented early-stage, private, and public companies, including domain industry companies. Alvaro received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and his Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School. Alvaro has also studied law at the University of Paris II (Panthéon-Assas) and the University of Havana, Cuba and pursued coursework at the University of London (King’s College) and the London School of Economics. Alvaro is admitted to the State bars of Washington and California (inactive).
Solomon Amoako, mmx
A tenured sales executive with over 20 years of sales, relationship management and operations experience spanning such industries as financial services, time and labor management, consulting and online identity. Sol has had the luxury of substantial work experience in almost all major facets of the domain space. As a Registrar, Solomon led global sales, AM, Technical support and Prof. services teams at Tucows. In the secondary marketplace his role was CSO and SVP of Sales at Sedo with a focus on the Americas. He also functioned as the VP of Sales for Rightside and today is the Vice President of Channel strategy for MMX Registry.
Matthew Bilsland, Google
Matthew is Head of the Domains business teams at Google, with responsibility for partnerships, marketing and operations. In the four years since joining Google’s domains efforts he has overseen the separate business teams responsible for both the inception and fast growth of Google’s domain registrar (domains.google), and the launch of multiple new innovative gTLDs including .google and .app for Google Registry (registry.google).
He has served in various business leadership roles at Google (including publisher advertising products like AdExchange, AdSense and DFP) and prior to that at Getty Images, and holds a Masters in International Intellectual Property Law from the University of Edinburgh.
Rich Merdinger, GoDaddy
Richard Merdinger focuses his extensive Domain Industry experience on furthering GoDaddy’s domain business, interfacing with industry leaders and developing new business opportunities to better serve small businesses.
Mr. Merdinger has been with GoDaddy since 1997 when he was hired as one of the company’s first technical employees. He graduated from the University of Iowa with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.
In his spare time, Mr. Merdinger enjoys hanging out at home with his wife and three daughters, with the occasional game of golf thrown in for sanity.
Yasmin Omer, Amazon
Yasmin Omer is Senior Manager of Operations and Partnerships at Amazon Registry Services and is responsible for Amazon’s new gTLD partnerships and operations at Amazon Registry. Prior to Amazon, Ms. Omer was Senior Compliance Specialist at Amazon in the Intellectual Property group, and has served in key roles at Neustar, Bombora Technologies/Ari Registry, and served as the general manager of the dotShabaka Registry for the شبكة (pronounced shabaka in English) Top Level Domain (TLD). شبكة was the first ‘borderless’ non-English TLD on the Internet.
Cole Quinn, Microsoft Corporation
Cole Quinn leads the corporate domains team at Microsoft within the Corporate, External, and Legal Affairs (CELA) group, where he manages the domain name portfolio and .brand TLD registry for Microsoft. Drawing from his respected network within the .brand community, and background with Agile and Lean program management, corporate domain management, security and DNS systems, Cole’s engineering and operations teams operate within a framework of continual improvement, team empowerment and a growth mindset. Cole serves on the Board of Directors for the Brand Registry Group, and chairs the BRG’s Strategic Vision Working Group and Registry Operations and Best Practices Committee.
Jeff Sass, .CLUB Domains
Jeff has over 30 years of experience in the technology and entertainment industries and has co-founded several start-ups including mobile commerce pioneer BarPoint.com in 1999. As Vice President, Chief Evangelist at Myxer from 2007 to 2012 Jeff played a significant role in growing the mobile entertainment company into one of the top 15 mobile websites in the U.S. He is a Co-Founder of EntrepreneurWiki, and Social Object Factory. Jeff joined the .CLUB team in March 2012, and has led the company’s marketing efforts throughout the process of acquiring and launching the .CLUB top level domain. Jeff has also written and produced for film and television and has a deep understanding of the content business that is unique for a tech executive.
A graduate of Cornell University, Jeff is a frequent speaker and panelist on domain names, mobile marketing, digital music, entrepreneurship and social media. He is also an online instructor for the University of San Francisco’s Mobile Marketing Program. Jeff has had articles published in AdAge, Forbes, DMNews, Mobile Marketer, iMedia Connection and others. He is a co-host of the Cast of Dads podcast and has written regularly for a number of blogs including Dadomatic.com, SocialNetworkingRehab.com, and his personal blog, Sassholes! He also served as an Intel Advisor and Sony Digidad.
Officers of the Domain Name Association
The Board of Directors are supported by the following non-voting Officers.
Sean Baseri, Neustar, (Treasurer)*
Sean is Manager of Registry Security and Product Management at Neustar, Inc.
Sean heads the registry security program for Neustar Top Level Domains (TLDs), manages a team focused on security threats across TLDs, and designs and manages development of registry services
Jothan Frakes, MERGE.SHOW and Private Label Registrar (PLISK.COM), (Executive Director)*
Jothan Frakes is the Executive Director of the Domain Name Association.
Jothan was co-founder of the MERGE.SHOW conference that gathers numerous conferences, meetups, and events under one roof for an amazing inter-disciplinary fusion of talent and networking. He also is the CEO of ICANN Accredited Registrar $$$ Private Label Internet Service Kiosk (plisk.com). Registering his first domain name in 1991, Jothan has developed, pioneered and worked with a variety of systems in DNS, security, messaging, naming and hosting since, holding key roles consulting on subject matter for major firms such as Mackenzie and KPMG, as well as a long career in numerous registries and registrars, auction, appraisal, advertising and aftermarket systems, as well as inventing a variety of technologies that are widely in use in Instant Service, Name Suggestion, Blockchain and Internationalized Domain Names (IDN).
Jothan is often jokingly referred to as the “unofficial mayor of ICANN”, because of his long tenure within the community, ability to speak thoughtfully while holding respect within a number of different groups, and his appreciation of the nuances and depths of subject matter and perspectives.
An early pioneer in IDN and Domain Name innovation, Frakes has contributes as a volunteer developer with Mozilla and Joomla, and played a vital role in the past decade ensuring ccTLDs and new TLDs would function in most browsers and certificate authorities through efforts in coordinating the Public Suffix List with ICANN’s contracting and Stability and Security Advisory Committee.
Statton Hammock, MarkMonitor, (Secretary)*
Statton Hammock is the Vice President of Global Policy and Industry Development for MarkMonitor. For more than 15 years, Statton has provided companies with strategic business advice and guidance on Internet policy, domain name strategy, compliance, and brand protection. As former general counsel and officer of several public, private, and non-profit corporations in the Internet industry including Network Solutions, Enom, Rightside, NameJet, and Name.com, Statton has led teams that have developed tactics, policies, procedures, and industry best practices to tackle several forms of abusive online behavior including consumer fraud, dissemination of counterfeit goods, illegal pharmacies, and trademark infringement. Statton holds a BA in Government from the University of Virginia and a JD from the University of Maine School of Law..