Andreas Gal, former director of research and VP of mobile and research at Mozilla, has been named chief technology officer.
Gal is stepping into the shoes of Brendan Eich, one of Mozilla’s cofounders, who occupied the job for many years. Eich was named CEO recently and quickly resigned after widespread backlash from the media and the community due to his support of an anti-gay marriage law years ago.
When Eich decided to step down from his new job, he also left the company, leaving both the CTO and CEO chairs empty.
“Today, I am starting my role as Mozilla’s new Chief Technology Officer. Mozilla is an unusual organization. We are not just a software company making a product. We are also a global community of people with a shared goal to build and further the Web, the world’s largest and fastest-growing technology ecosystem. My new responsibilities at Mozilla include identifying and enabling new technology ideas from across the project, leading technical decision making, and speaking for Mozilla’s vision of the Web,” the new CTO writes in a personal announcement.
Gal explains that for him, the open Web is a unique ecosystem because no one controls or owns it. The only thing that Mozilla does is distribute a web browser. “Every browser vendor can prototype new technologies for the Web. Once Mozilla led the way with Firefox, market pressures and open standards quickly forced competitors to implement successful technology as well. The result has been an unprecedented pace of innovation that has already displaced competing proprietary technology ecosystems on the desktop,” Gal states with pride.
Andreas Gal will be responsible for leading the technical decision making group, represent Mozilla externally on technology and manage the company’s R&D programs. In parallel, he will continue to serve as vice president of Mobile as the company continues to focus its efforts on delivering and scaling Firefox OS.
Ever since the start of April, when Eich resigned, the CEO position remained unoccupied for nearly two weeks. Then, the company named former exec Chris Beard as interim CEO until a final decision was made.