Former HP open-source exec hired by GNOME Foundation

Peters to become group's executive director

As its open source desktop software grows in popularity across a wider range of electronic devices, the GNOME Foundation has decided to hire a new executive director to continue its spread.

In an announcement Monday at its user conference in Istanbul, Turkey, the foundation named Stormy Peters, who co-founded the foundation and formerly managed the open source program at Hewlett-Packard, to be the group's new executive director.

Peters, who recently worked for OpenLogic, an open source enterprise management software company, will be responsible for continuing to build GNOME's market base, according to the group.

Peters could not be reached for comment today. At OpenLogic, Peters was the director of community and partner programs. She will continue to have an advisory role in the company.

At HP, she was responsible for HP's open source strategy, policy and business practices. Peters joined HP 10 years ago as a software engineer in the Unix Development Lab after graduating from Rice University with a B.A. in computer science.

"It is extremely gratifying to see the GNOME Foundation grow to the point where it needs an executive director to drive additional industry support and further increase adoption of GNOME," said Simon Phipps, chief open source officer at Sun Microsystems and a foundation advisory board member, in a statement.

"During the past year there's been tremendous growth in the number of devices that ship with GNOME and other free and open source software installed from laptops to phones, and even GPS devices," Phipps said. "An executive director will help GNOME capitalize on this momentum, exactly at a time when more of the world is realizing the value of free and open source software, and understanding the necessity of a great user experience as part of that platform."

The foundation hasn't had an executive director in several years.

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