Get to Know the Board’s Governance Working Group
ARIN’s Board of Trustees established a Governance Working Group (GWG) in January 2020 to assess the structure and design of ARIN’s Board. The ultimate intention for the GWG is to identify any changes that may be needed to meet the long-term goals of ARIN, and we plan to wrap up our findings in early 2022.
ARIN’s Board maintains authority over the scope, mission, and along with the President and Chief Executive Officer, John Curran, establishes the strategic direction and fiscal oversight of the organization. The Board also has oversight authority of the nomination, appointment, and election of individuals to Board committees and similar roles. Currently, the Board consists of seven members. Six members are elected by ARIN’s membership, and the President of ARIN serves as the seventh Trustee.
With a goal of strengthening ARIN’s ability to serve its community, the Board of Trustees established the GWG and seated Nancy Carter, who serves as the Chair, Peter Harrison and Catherine Middleton. Since formation, we have been focused on finding ways to increase the effectiveness of the role of the Board as a complement to Management’s ongoing continuous improvement activities to better serve the ARIN community.
To do this we worked with an external advisory firm to help our assessment and identification of change opportunities within the Board. Some activities we have focused on over the past two years include:
- Looking at the best practices and standards of governance, then shifting those selected for further study and application
- Reviewing current policies, procedures, bylaws and other documentation to look for areas of opportunity for change
- Benchmarking key ARIN practices against other relevant organizations
- Prioritizing areas of governance for evolution, participating in facilitated discussions, and developing a work plan for the GWG to manage governance evolution
- Developing recommendations for possible future implementation
As a result we are offering a number of recommendations in the following areas to assist the Board in improving its current structure and design:
- Strategic Board focus
- Community understanding
- Board structure and membership
- Board operations
The GWG has prioritized our recommendations based on potential impact, urgency, and anticipated level of implementation efforts. We are excited to bring our findings to the community in the near future for feedback, and we hope you will participate in the resulting consultations about recommended improvements to ARIN’s governance.
Forecasting the future of the Internet is difficult. The Board must swiftly adapt to the tide of shifting global realities, and the fluid needs of the community. The consultations will guarantee the ebb and flow of ideas, not just today, but for decades to come. They will help guarantee the Board stays alert and nimble in all conditions. By charting the Board’s course to broader representation, healthier turnover, deeper knowledge and demonstrable integrity, ARIN will be more resilient. The winds of change we all expect externally will be better handled by the results of these internal discussions.
ARIN and its Board of Trustees welcomes community participation, so stay tuned to ARIN announcements and subscribe to our ARIN Consultations mailing list so you can be sure to give us your feedback.
On behalf of the Governance Working Group, we would like to express our appreciation for the support we received from management, staff, and the other members of the Board of Trustees. The recommendations of the GWG set out a clear pathway for improved corporate governance including greater transparency for the community. The Working Group looks forward to the feedback generated through the consultation process.
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