The Sovrin Foundation

The Sovrin Foundation is a private-sector, international non-profit that was established to govern the world’s first self-sovereign identity (SSI) network. The Internet is missing a layer for secure identity which is currently costing us hundreds of billions of dollars each year. The Sovrin Foundation is showing the world that when we control our own identities, many exciting and liberating possibilities are at our fingertips.

Providing an enduring solution for global identity requires significant effort and careful planning. The Sovrin Foundation exists to provide the human governance and trust frameworks that will be needed to establish ground rules and ensure the integrity of the network. To be effective at this task, the Sovrin Foundation has been designed to establish trust through transparency, diffusion, and neutrality.

The Sovrin Foundation has intentionally invited board members to represent expertise from across multiple industries and geographies, ensuring that special interests – whether commercial, governmental, or otherwise – do not unduly influence decisions. Our intent is to devise a process so that the elected Board of Trustees will be representative of the people and organizations who own identities on the Sovrin network.

Sovrin Foundation is a non-profit. We don’t actually own the network – no one does, much like the Internet itself. The Sovrin network is public: everyone can get a Sovrin identity. Individuals and organizations own and control their identities. The Sovrin network is permissioned: the infrastructure for ensuring consensus on identity transactions is provided by carefully vetted and permissioned stewards who independently own and operate their nodes on the network. These combine to form a system of checks and balances that earns trust through action rather than promises.

We are the Sovrin Foundation.

FAQ

Rondle Amstutz

Vice Chairman, Sovrin Foundation; Executive Vice President, Desert Schools Federal Credit Union

Bio
Arizona

Ron is a 34 year credit union veteran who has been with Desert Schools since 1998 with responsibility for Information Technology, Product Management, Digital Strategy, Marketing and Community Development. Among other accomplishments, Ron was directly responsible for the development and implementation of “Internet Banking” and bill payment services for the credit union as well as a revitalization of the organization’s brand image in 2001.

He has represented the credit union industry on multiple advisory boards and steering committees such as CULedger and Corelation Inc. Prior to arriving in Phoenix, Ron worked at four other credit unions in Indiana and South Carolina, leading their technology teams. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from Bethel College.

 

Phillip Windley, Ph.D.

Chairman and President, Sovrin Foundation; Office of the CIO, Brigham Young University

Bio
Utah

Phil Windley is an Enterprise Architect in the CIO’s office at Brigham Young University. A passionate tech educator, he is the co-founder and organizer of the Internet Identity Workshop, serves as an Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at BYU, writes the popular Technometria blog, and is the author of the books The Live Web published by Course Technology in 2011 and Digital Identity published by O’Reilly Media in 2005. Phil serves on the Boards of Directors and Advisory Boards for several high-tech companies.

Phil has been a professor of Computer Science at Brigham Young University and the University of Idaho. In addition, Phil was the Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Kynetx, the company behind the open-source connected-car product, Fuse. He also spent two years as the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the State of Utah in 2001-2002, serving on Governor Mike Leavitt’s Cabinet and as a member of his Senior Staff. Before entering public service, Phil was Vice President for Product Development and Operations at Excite@Home. He was the Founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of iMALL, Inc. an early creator of ecommerce tools. Phil received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from University of California, Davis in 1990.

 

Drummond Reed

Secretary, Sovrin Foundation; Chief Trust Officer, Evernym

Bio
Washington

Drummond has spent over two decades working on Internet identity, security, privacy, and trust frameworks. He joined Evernym as Chief Trust Officer after Evernym’s acquisition of Respect Network, where he was CEO, co-founder, and co-author of the Respect Trust Framework, which was honored with the Privacy Award at the 2011 European Identity Conference. Drummond has served as co-chair of the OASIS XDI Technical Committee since 2004, the new semantic data interchange protocol that implements Privacy by Design. Prior to starting Respect Network, Drummond was Executive Director of two industry foundations: the Information Card Foundation and the Open Identity Exchange, the international not-for-profit clearinghouse for Internet trust frameworks. He has also served as a founding board member of the OpenID Foundation, ISTPA, XDI.org, and Identity Commons. In 2002 he was a recipient of the Digital Identity Pioneer Award from Digital ID World, and in 2013 he was honored as an OASIS Distinguished Contributor.

 

Tim Brown

VP of IT Innovation Research and Development, USAA

Bio
Texas

Tim Brown is a Vice President of Information Technology Services at USAA, a leading financial services company headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, with offices throughout the United States and Europe. The association has been serving military families since 1922 and has become well known for its exceptional service, offering its more than 10 million members a full range of insurance, banking and investment products, financial advice and planning, and other services designed to help them meet their financial needs.

Tim leads the IT Innovation Research & Development team who excels in researching innovations, evaluating business and technical applicability and feasibility, conducts business and market assessments, and delivers emerging innovative capabilities into the company in close partnership with business stakeholders. Tim brings a unique blend of entrepreneur, marketer, technologist, strategist and business developer to the role.>

Joining USAA in 1988 Tim has held many leadership positions during his tenure, culminating with his appointment to Vice President in August 2014.

Tim earned a B.S degree in Business Analysis from Texas A&M University and a MBA from St. Mary’s University.

 

Mawaki Chango, Ph.D.

Founder & Managing Director, DigiLexis Consulting

Bio
Togo

Mawaki is a consultant and an entrepreneur as well as a scholar in the field of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). He is particularly enthusiastic about assisting African countries develop a truly digital economy through inclusive and evidence-based ICT-enabling policies. He has nearly 20 years of experience on issues of ICT & Society, consulting with organizations including UNESCO, the International Development Research Center, the Open Society Foundations, the African Union’s NEPAD Agency, UN’s Economic Commission for Africa, Hivos, the Association for Progressive Communications, etc. Mawaki has a PhD in Information Science and Technology from Syracuse University (Syracuse, New York) with a research focus on digital identity challenges and a dissertation titled “Becoming Artifacts: Medieval Seals, Passports and the Future of Digital Identity.”

Over the last dozen years, Mawaki has been actively involved in Internet governance spaces such as the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), particularly as a councilor in matters of policy regarding the Internet’s top-level generic domain names; the global civil society’s Internet Governance Caucus; and the UN-led process, Internet Governance Forum, both at global level and on various levels in Africa.

Founder of DigiLexis Consulting (upcoming: www.digilexis.co), Dr. Chango intends to increasingly engage his thoughts and actions to help spur Internet-enabled entrepreneurial opportunities in Africa and related private sector development, as well as governments to embrace the most adequate policies in that regard while improving their own operations in the digital age. Currently residing in Togo, Mawaki speaks English, French and Portuguese.

Heather Dahl

CEO & Author, CynjaTech

Bio
Washington D.C.

Heather is the co-founder and CEO of CynjaTech—building privacy platforms for brands, schools, organizations and consumers to protect and secure children, senior citizens and families. She’s also a co-author of a book series for children about technology called The Cynja. She is the former Director of Global Analyst Relations at Neustar, a technology and information services company serving the telecommunications, Internet, marketing and media industries. Heather is frequently cited as a thought leader on industry best practices. She continues to consult tech firms about their industry analyst relations programs.

Heather also spent time as a Senior Producer at Fox News Channel and has experience covering news for Public Radio International, KUOW Seattle, PBS NewsHour, National Public Radio, C-SPAN and Reuters TV. She also served on the staff of U.S. Senator Gordon H. Smith from her home state of Oregon. Heather serves as Chairman of the Board for Sense About Science USA. She’s also Board Chairman Emeritus for both the National Press Foundation and the Congressional Radio & TV Correspondents’ Association. Heather earned a B.A. from Willamette University, a Masters in Journalism from Columbia University and holds an MBA from The Johns Hopkins University.

Jason Law

Chair of Technical Governance Board, Sovrin Foundation; Chief Technology Officer, Evernym

Bio
Utah

Jason is a proven team leader and seasoned architect with twenty-plus years in information technology, most of which successfully building and directing high-talent technical teams. History of building solid working relationships with cross-functional and diverse groups, both technical and functional, local and offshore, and providing ongoing success in keeping projects prioritized, on time, and within budget. Self-driven and resourceful, motivated by challenging projects, and enjoys teaching and mentoring others. Holds an executive position, but loves writing code up and down the stack, prototyping and building proofs of concept.

Bram Neuteboom

Co-Founder, Qiy Foundation

Bio
Netherlands

Bram Neuteboom is co-founder of Qiy Foundation, creating a scheme and an open standard to put people back in control of their personal data. He is the chairman of the WorkStream Functionality & Technology. As CTO of Digital Me he’s responsible for developing technologies and services that meet the needs of people and businesses for more security, flexibility and control in everything they do online.

Antti Poikola

Researcher at Aalto University, Founding Member of MyData Global Network and Open Knowledge Finland

Bio
Finland

Antti Poikola is an advocate and experimenter of openness in society. He has expertise is in developing solutions for the open collaboration between citizens, companies and the public sector organisations. He is active and well connected in MyData and Open Data movements in Finland and internationally. His research focuses around questions on how to utilize personal data for the benefit of individuals. He is the main author for the guidebook, My Data – human centric way to organize personal data published by the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communications and core organiser of the big international MyData conferences that take place in Helsinki and Tallinn.

Joyce Searls

Co-Founder, Searls Group

Bio

Joyce Searls is a serial entrepreneur whose business, management and marketing instincts have been successfully applied across diverse industries, including apparel, hospitality, real estate, and technology. Following 25 years as a fashion industry professional, Joyce co-founded The Searls Group, with husband Doc Searls, renowned journalist and Internet visionary. As Managing Partner, Joyce is a co-collaborator, editor, advisor and key strategist, with discretionary oversight of all projects.

Joyce was an early investor and board member of Linux Journal. Together with Doc and others, she co-founded Customer Commons in 2013, a non-profit dedicated to restoring the balance of power and trust between individuals and the organizations that serve them.

Kazue Sako, Ph.D.

Senior Engineer, NEC

Bio
Japan

Kazue Sako received her B.S. degree and Ph.D. from Kyoto University. Her research interest is in cryptographic protocols that enhance privacy and fairness, e.g. electronic voting protocols, group signature schemes and digital lottery systems. In order to promote the use of anonymous authentication, she edited ISO/IEC 29191 and ISO/IEC 20008-2. She served as Program co-Chair/ Chair for ASIACRYPT 2012, 2013 and RSA conference 2016 Cryptographer’s Track. She is a strong advocate of Personal Data Ecosystem, which empowers individuals with their own data. She is also a member of the Science Council of Japan.

Peter Simpson

Founder & Director, iRespond

Bio
Washington

Peter Simpson is the director and head of research at iRespond.org an international non-governmental organization providing open standards based technology solutions for global and public health. Peter’s background is in medical informatics and computer science with a focus on large scale distributed health information systems, patient tracking with identity and encryption. Currently, his primary area of research has been focused on the use of new and innovative biometric modalities in new born and infant identity both in the hardware sensor and the user interface experience to improve the quality of electronic health data collected in remote and resource constrained areas of the world.

Peter has been a project leader or team member in the deployment of several successful health technology projects provided by partners and supported by organizations and governments around the world, and is part of an international team working on protected identity in nomadic and cross-border populations to improve infectious disease epidemiology.