OpenAI names Twitch co-founder Emmett Shear as interim CEO amid leadership shakeup
What a weekend it’s been! OpenAI went through a tumultuous period of leadership change in the past 72 hours. On Friday, the board of directors made the abrupt decision to oust Sam Altman, the co-founder and CEO. Following Altman’s departure, Mira Murati, a longstanding executive at OpenAI, was appointed as the interim CEO.
However, it became clear that the company was actively seeking a more permanent leader. This morning, the OpenAI board announced that Emmett Shear, co-founder and former CEO of Twitch, would replace Mira Murati as the interim CEO. According to a memo viewed by The New York Times. The board stated that Shear has a “unique mix of skills, expertise and relationships that will drive OpenAI forward.”
The news came just hours after Microsoft reported hiring Sam Altman and Greg Brockman to lead an advanced AI research team.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella expressed excitement about the development, saying, “We’re extremely excited to share the news that Sam Altman and Greg Brockman, together with colleagues, will be joining Microsoft to lead a new advanced AI research team,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a post on X.
Emmett Shear stepping into the role of interim CEO at OpenAI is undoubtedly a positive move for the company. His wealth of experience, leadership acumen, and dedication to ethical AI position him as a solid candidate to guide OpenAI through its present obstacles and toward a promising future.
Shear brings over two decades of experience in the tech industry, having held leadership roles at various companies, including Twitch, YouTube, and Mozilla. He has a proven track record as a successful CEO, steering Twitch through substantial growth and profitability. Shear is also recognized for his role in developing Twitch’s groundbreaking live-streaming platform.
Beyond his tech expertise, Shear possesses a deep understanding of the ethical and societal aspects of AI. His commitment lies in ensuring that OpenAI’s work benefits humanity as a whole.
Meanwhile, in the memo, the OpenAI board again defended Altman’s firing on Friday, saying:
“The board firmly stands by its decision as the only path to advance and defend the mission of OpenAI. Put simply, Sam’s behavior and lack of transparency in his interactions with the board undermined the board’s ability to effectively supervise the company in the manner it was mandated to do.”
The memo, signed by all four directors on OpenAI’s board—Adam D’Angelo, Helen Toner, Ilya Sutskever, and Tasha McCauley—asserted the board’s unwavering commitment to their decision as the sole means to progress and safeguard OpenAI’s mission.