July 26, 1996
I have been a full-time Associate Director of the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science for approximately ten years. This past Spring, after much soul searching and discussions with my family, I have decided that this is an appropriate time to step down from this position and also an appropriate time to retire from MIT. My retirement also means that I will be leaving the post of Chairman of the W3C. I do this with the mixed feelings of elation and regret: elation stemming from the anticipation of a new adventure, and regret, because the Laboratory has been a great place to work.
For many reasons the decision to retire was a very difficult one; nevertheless the call to do something new and different is very strong at this time.
The launch of the W3C has been extremely successful, as it is populated by approximately 150 member companies world-wide, many of whom are major players in their field. So it appears to be a good time for a new Chairman of the W3C to come aboard. While my decision was made in the Spring, we delayed announcement until a replacement for the Chairman of the World Wide Web Consortium could be announced. I am happy to report that Jean-Francois Abramatic, the current Associate Chairman, will be joining the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science as Chairman of the W3C. When he returns from vacation, in approximately two weeks, I am sure he will make his own statement to the members.
My plan is to retire on September 30, 1996. I will do everything I can to ensure that the transition caused by my departure is as smooth as possible. I will, of course, be available after that time to help both Jean-Francois and Tim Berners-Lee with any remaining transitional issues.
I have immensely enjoyed my association with the Consortium and will miss not being part of its grand accomplishments. I will also miss Tim, Jean-Francois, the W3C team here at the Laboratory and at INRIA, and the interaction with the member representatives. I want to thank each of you for making my association with the W3C so gratifying.
When I have decided what my next adventure will be, I will let you know.