Read More About the Speakers Attending the 2019 Middle East DNS Forum


H. E. Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori

H. E. Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori currently holds the position of Director General, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority.
He was previously the Director General of UAE mGovernment, having held this position from April 2014 and the Deputy Director General of the TRA since May 2013.
Al Mansoori is amongst the eminent Emirati personalities who are endowed with the trust of the wise leaders which is illustrated in the nature of responsibilities entrusted to him in the positions he has held and the roles and responsibilities he has successfully accomplished.
Al Mansoori holds a Master’s degree in Computer Science from Middlesex University, London.Al Mansoori began his career in the year 1994 with his appointment as the Head of Development Department at Central Military Zone. Throughout his career, Al Mansoori has held leading positions in the field of Information Systems with several government entities; prominently with Dubai Police, General Directorate for Residency and Foreign Affairs, Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation, and Dubai Public Prosecution.
Some of the other important positions he held at the national level include: Director General for Mohammed bin Rashid Smart Learning Program and Director of Programs for National Portals.
Al Mansoori also holds the prestigious position of Chairman of the Emirates Institution for Advanced Science and Technology.
He is a Board Member of Emaratech, a technical and management consulting company
He is the Chairman/President of the Information Systems at Dubai Police control room, a member of the Higher Committee for Information Systems at the Ministry of Labour, and the Chairman/President of the eLink project.

Cherine Chalaby

Cherine Chalaby is the ICANN Board Chair. Chalaby’s extensive international career encompasses leadership roles in banking and technology.

Beginning in London in 1977, Chalaby joined one of the world’s largest IT services companies, Accenture. As senior partner, he held key managing positions, ultimately serving on Accenture’s Executive Committee and its Global Leadership Council. During his 28-year tenure at Accenture, he led several projects aimed at improving the flow of information between financial markets participants, projects that have been made possible by the expansion of the internet.

In March 2006, Chalaby joined Rasmala, a Middle East-based regional investment bank, where he held several positions including chairman of the supervisory board, chairman of the management board and chairman of the bank’s subsidiary in Egypt.

Chalaby has considerable board experience, having served on seven separate boards of directors. He was selected by the Nominating Committee to serve on the Board. His term will expire at the Annual General Meeting 2019.

Ai-Chin Lu

Ai-Chin Lu is the Vice Executive Director at Taiwan Network Information Center (TWNIC), managing Taiwan’s ccTLDs, .tw and .台灣. Ai-Chin has been associated with TWNIC since 1998. She has played a major role in creating the .tw/.台灣 registration guidelines and led the coordination of the domain name registration system, and DN Dispute Resolution Services. She serves as the Co-Secretary of the Chinese Domain Name Consortium (CDNC). She is also a member of the Joint Engineering Team. Before joining TWNIC, Ai-Chin worked at the Computer Center of the Ministry of Education and the Institute for Information Industry. She holds M.Sc. in Computer Science from University of Missouri-Rolla in USA.

Chris Buckridge

Chris Buckridge is External Relations Manager for the RIPE NCC, the Regional Internet Registry for Europe, the Middle East and parts of Central Asia. In this role, he oversees the Organization’s engagement with a broad range of stakeholders, including RIPE NCC members, the RIPE community, governments, law enforcement agencies (LEAs), academia and international organizations.

Born in Brisbane, Australia, Buckridge began working for the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) in 2003, before relocating to Amsterdam in 2006 to take up a position with the RIPE NCC. He joined the External Relations department when it was established in 2010.

Giovanni Seppia

Giovanni Seppia has been the External Relations manager at EURid since mid-2007. In this function, he is responsible for a team of 20 people, in charge of EURid relations with the European institutions, registrar relations, marketing and communication activities, and international relations. At EURid, he is also in charge of the environmental plan within the Eco and Management Audit Scheme framework. He previously worked at ICANN as the European Regional Liaison. Prior to that, he was the General Manager at CENTR.

He has also served as Head of External Relations for the Italian Registry (ITT-CNR) for five years and has three years of experience in various roles at the European Commission. He has been working as a consultant on EU programs for several national and international organizations and served as an EU programs lecturer for ten editions of the Master on EU policies and programs at the Venice International University.

Baher Esmat

Baher Esmat is ICANN Regional Vice President for stakeholder engagement in the Middle East. In his role, Esmat is a keen facilitator of collaboration and dialogue between ICANN and the broader Internet community, and promotes the further development of the region’s domain name industry.

Esmat is a founding Board member of Egypt ISOC Chapter. He has also served on several Internet Governance related groups including the UN Working Group on Internet Governance, the CSTD Working Group on IGF Improvements, and the IGF Multistakeholder Advisory Committee (MAG).

He earned 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.

Hisham Ibrahim

Hisham Ibrahim is the Middle East Technical Program Manager at the RIPE NCC, in charge of capacity building, technical engagement and community development in the MENOG community.

Massimiliano Stucchi

Massimiliano Stucchi is the IPv6 Program Manager and a trainer at the RIPE NCC. In this position, he travels around the RIPE region to deliver trainings on how to better use the resources assigned by RIPE NCC. Prior to this role, he was CTO, founder and owner of an ISP/ITSP/WISP and also a consultant with experiences ranging from web technologies to carrier-grade networking topics. He is the Vice President of the Italian FreeBSD Users Group (GUFI).

Nick Tomasso

Nick Tomasso joined ICANN in 2008, bringing with him a wealth of experience after leading IBM’s global meetings as Director of Global Events. Today he has various roles at ICANN. In his capacity as Vice President of Global Meeting Operations, Nick manages all ICANN meetings, in particular, the three annual public meetings held in different regions of the globe that allow attendees from around the world to participate in person. These meetings are an essential platform for ICANN and provide the opportunity for an internationally diverse group of individuals and organizations to come together and discuss and develop policies for the Internet’s naming systems. He is also the Managing Director for ICANN’s Middle East and Africa Regional Office in Istanbul, Turkey. In this role, he supports the organization’s strategic objective to evolve and further internationalize ICANN and better serve the global community.

Mukesh Chulani

Mukesh Chulani serves as ICANN’s Registrar Services & Engagement Senior Manager, where he functions as the liaison for ICANN-accredited registrars in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, and supports the development and implementation of various services for ICANN-accredited registrars. He is based in ICANN’s Regional Office in Istanbul, and holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines and a postgraduate diploma in application and management of information technology from the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada.

Patrick Jones

Patrick Jones is the Senior Director of Global Stakeholder Engagement at ICANN. He coordinates ICANN’s global engagement activities across its regional and functional teams. He joined ICANN in March 2006 and has been active in the Internet governance, policy, operations and security fields since 2000. Patrick is also an invited participant in ICANN’s Security and Stability Advisory Committee.

Raedene McGary

Raedene McGary is a barrister qualified in England, an attorney licensed in California, and a data protection certified practitioner. Her involvement in the domain name industry has spanned more than seventeen years. She is currently the Group General Counsel of CentralNic Group plc. One of the world’s leaders in the domain name industry, CentralNic is continuously developing to meet the domain market’s evolving challenges and opportunities. Headquartered in London, and with offices across the globe, the business services customers in over 250 countries. Raedene focuses on supporting ccTLDs in operational and policy development projects, assisting both dot brand and open TLD registry clients with policy support in relation its ICANN operator licenses and compliance for both registry clients and CentralNic Group owned registrars.

Rafik Dammak

Rafik Dammak is a computer engineer living in Japan. He has been involved in the civil society on issues related to the Internet Governance since 2007. He has been involved in ICANN policy-making spaces such as as NCUC and NCSG, CS organizations within ICANN, and as an individual end-user. He was the chair of NCSG and NCUC and he is currently a GNSO Councilor for NCSG and GNSO Council vice chair. He is also interested in the Internet Governance issues in MENA region and has collaborated closely with IGMENA project and took part in different capacity building efforts.Rafik Dammak is a computer engineer living in Japan. He has been involved in the civil society on issues related to the Internet Governance since 2007. He has been involved in ICANN policy-making spaces such as as NCUC and NCSG, CS organizations within ICANN, and as an individual end-user. He was the chair of NCSG and NCUC and he is currently a GNSO Councilor for NCSG and GNSO Council vice chair. He is also interested in the Internet Governance issues in MENA region and has collaborated closely with IGMENA project and took part in different capacity building efforts.

Samaneh Tajalizadehkhoob

Samaneh Tajalizadehkhoob has been a lead Security, Stability & Resiliency specialist at ICANN OCTO SSR group since October 2018. She has been an active researcher in Domain Name Abuse and Internet Security for the past six years. She holds a Ph.D. from Delft University of Technology (2018) on analyzing and improving security performance of hosting providers. Currently, she is managing ICANN ‘s Domain Abuse Activity Reporting (DAAR) project and conducting research to enhance and improve the project domain abuse detection and reporting.

Sarmad Hussain

Sarmad Hussain is ICANN’s IDN Programs Director, involved in Internationalized Domain Names program and Universal Acceptance initiative. He has over twenty years of research and development experience in local language computing, including Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs).

Tom Barrett

Tom Barrett has over 30 years of experience in technology, including over 20 years of experience in internet development and management. Currently, he is the President and Founder of ICANN-accredited Registrar: EnCirca, Inc. EnCirca is the leading registration, security and validation provider for restricted Registries, including the .BANK, .REALTOR, .PHARMACY, and .JOBS TLDs. EnCirca is also a Trademark Agent for the Trademark Clearinghouse. He was previously the CEO of NetNames, which he sold to NetBenefit (LSE:NBT) and Vice President at Thomson Compumark (part of ThomsonReuters), where he led the development of the SAEGIS trademark research platform. Previous affiliations also include Neustar, Ziff Davis Interactive (Interchange), Accenture (Andersen Consulting), General Electric – Aircraft Engines, and Pratt & Whitney Aircraft. He holds engineering degrees from MIT and WPI.

Imran Bulan Khan

Imran Bulan Khan is a digital security architect in Etisalat, UAE. With more than fifteen years of expertise in Cyber Security Consulting, Designing and Architecting solutions for Enterprise and Government Customers, Imran has successfully executed and managed large and complex projects in the region. His primary skills include building enterprise security strategy and architectures, Cloud Security, IOT/OT/ICS Security, Consulting, Audit and Assurance, Information Security GRC and Risk Management.

Caitlin Tubergen

Caitlin Tubergen currently serves as Senior Policy Manager for the Generic Names Supporting Organization Team. Within this role, she currently supports the Expedited Policy Development Process on the Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data. Prior to joining ICANN, she served as a Legal Case Manager at the World Intellectual Property Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. Tubergen is based in Los Angeles, California.


Joe Alagna

Joe Alagna has played pivotal roles in the growth of registries (and a registrar) for almost twenty years. Starting with a privately owned London based domain name registry when they sold 5 or 10 domain names per day, he led their sales and marketing efforts; That company went public in 2013. He spent the next four years at 101domain, a retail, ccTLD-focused Registrar. For the last 18 months, he is spearheading the marketing efforts for Afilias’ Registry Services Platform.


Abdalmonem Galila

Abdalmonem Galila is the Deputy Manager of .masr (.مصر) IDN ccTLD of Egypt. He is also a member of Task Force on Arabic Script IDNs (TF-AIDN) that focuses on secure deployment and ease of use of Arabic IDNs. With TF-AIDN he is contributing to root zone and second level LGRs and universal acceptance for the Arabic script domain names. He is a member of Universal Acceptance Steering Group “UASG”, the group concept is that all domain names should be treated equally, recently he is elected to be UA ambassador since March 2018.

Alister Paterson

Alister Paterson is Head of Government Affairs and Strategic Adviser at auDA. He is a former television journalist and news anchor with the Seven and Ten TV Networks in Australia. Alister spent ten years as a State Member of Parliament in Australia from 1992 to 2002 and served on the then Multimedia Policy Committee overseeing the Government’s response to the development of the internet from the perspective of the Executive and the Legislature. He has also consulted to many companies in the fields of government relations and reputation management.

Elena Plexida

Elena Plexida is part of ICANN’s Government and IGO engagement team. Based in Brussels, she is focused, among others, on engagement with the European Institutions. Prior to joining ICANN, she worked for the European Commission DG CONNECT, the Permanent Representation of Greece to the EU as a Telecom Attaché and the Hellenic Ministry of Telecom.

Fahd Batayneh

Fahd Batayneh has been with ICANN since October 2013, and serves as a Stakeholder Engagement Manager for the Middle East. Prior to ICANN, he held several positions within Jordan’s National IT Center (NITC), last of which was managing both the ccTLD and IDN ccTLD of Jordan. Batayneh has attended ICANN meetings on a regular basis since 2008, and was active in several working groups. Batayneh has also provided consultancy on Internet Governance, new gTLDs, and Internet Policies. He holds a B.Sc. in Computer Engineering with honors, and an MBA.

Jawad Abbassi

Jawad Abbassi’s career experience in ICT and Media spans 24 years. Before joining the GSMA as head of MENA in Oct 2015, Jawad managed the Arab Advisors Group which he had founded in 2001. Jawad Abbassi is also a frequent guest speaker at conferences and seminars related to technology, communications and media in the Arab World. Before founding Arab Advisors Group, Jawad’s career experience included working as a senior telecommunications and technology consultant with the Yankee Group in Boston – USA. Between 1998 and 2000, Mr. Abbassi was a Senior Analyst with the communications research arm of the Economist Intelligence Unit in Boston.

Munir Badr

Munir Badr is a young Internet entrepreneur and the Founder/CEO of AEserver.com, an award-winning, UAE based domain name registrar and web host. AEserver.com is an accredited .ae registrar by TRA of UAE since 2008. Hosting 15,000+ businesses from all over the world.

Munir has lived more than 22 years in Dubai and has seen the country grow from desert to a futuristic city, this was his fuel for passion to start and grow a business within the domain name/web hosting industry. Munir is also a prominent speaker at various forums such as MEDNSF, APTLD, MENOG, and others.

Nitin Walia

over two Decades of rich extensive experience of IT sector and involvement in the global Internet community. Well-established expert in Email solution and Email Internationalization (EAI), Data Centers, Internet etc. Advocating for Universal Acceptance globally. Director and Head Sales & Marketing in various technology companies of Data Group of Industries whose software products like XgenPlus, SpamJadoo, DATAMAIL, etc has got 25 Million consumers world over and won multiple recognition`s including bringing in first of its kind IDN email “XGENPLUS” supporting email addresses not just in ENGLISH but also in various Indian languages along with several international languages.

Seher Sagiroglu Ayhan

Seher Sagiroglu Ayhan is compliance specialist with a five-year experience in implementing and maintaining processes to monitor compliance and streamline enforcement in ICANN Contractual Compliance Department. Before she joined ICANN, she was a project analyst with experience in creating, analyzing, and documenting the requirements for businesses interacting with the Nic.tr Administration (“.tr” ccTLD Registry Operator)

Emily Taylor

Emily Taylor is the CEO of Oxford Information Labs. She is an Associate Fellow of Chatham House and is the Editor of the Journal of Cyber Policy. She is also a founder of ICANN accredited registrar, Netistrar Limited. A lawyer by training, Taylor has worked in the domain name sector for 20 years.

Pavel Khramtsov

Pavel Khramtsov is the DNS project manager in JSC Moscow Internet Exchange and Head of Application development department of Technical Center of Internet (Backend operator of .RU & .РФ). He is the coordinator of “Netoscope” project (Domain Reputation Service for .RU & .РФ).
He is also an associate professor in National Research Nuclear University (faculty of cybernetic, department of system analysis) and lectures the courses: “World Information Resources” and “Open Systems”. He holds a Ph.D. in Technical Sciences (1998), along with an academic status as Associate Professor (2003).

Amr Elsadr

Amr Elsadr is a member of the Generic Names Supporting Organization’s (GNSO) Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group (NCSG). He regularly participates in GNSO policy development, mainly on issues concerning gTLD registration data (WHOIS), and is now a member of the GNSO Expedited Policy Development Process on the Temporary Specification for Registration Data. He has, in the past, served on the GNSO Council for a number of years, and has also supported policy development in the GNSO as a Policy Manager with ICANN.

Andi Budimansyah

Andi Budimansyah is the Chairman and CEO of PANDI (Pengelola Nama Domain Internet Indonesia), the CCTLD .id. As the CEO, he was responsible to the Executive Board for the general operation of PANDI since 2011. During his administration term, PANDI was developed into a more advanced organization and promote .id as a trusted domain name, achieved ISO9001 certification for quality assurance and ISO27001 certification for security, and engaged with multistakeholder initiatives domestically and globally.

Jan Žorž

Jan Žorž started his professional career in networking back in 1992 and is now the Internet Society’s Operational Engagement Program Manager. He works on operational initiatives to ease the deployment of IPv6, DNSSEC, and other technologies. He is also working to help the industry document best-current operational practices and to improve operator feedback to the IETF.

Anoop Sharda

Anoop Sherda is the Chief Technology officer, running 3 data centers across countries holding multiple certification across Linux, Windows, AWS, Azure. Pioneer in revolutionizing the local hosting Business in UAE.

Mert Saka

Mert Saka has been working for ICANN since 2014 as the Registry Services and Engagement Manager. Based in ICANN’s Istanbul Office, he works closely with the Registry Operators in EMEA region.

Having an engineering degree in electronics and very good communication skills in English and Turkish, he worked for various international organizations over the last decade, his experience covers the Internet, software and related fields and his specialties include business/technology analysis, solution and strategy championing, and communications.

Stephen Deerhake

Stephen Deerhake has been involved in the active management of the .AS (American Samoa) ccTLD for over twenty years. He has been actively involved in the ccNSO for almost 10 years, and currently serves on the ccNSO Council as one of the three representatives from North America.