Eben Moglen | President and Executive Director
Professor of Law, Columbia Law School. Founder, Software Freedom Law Center.
Professor Moglen began building software as a professional programmer at age 13. He worked as a designer of advanced computer programming languages at IBM from 1979 to 1985. In 1991, he represented Philip Zimmerman, the developer of PGP (“Pretty Good Privacy”), threatened with prosecution by the US government for making strong encryption free software that everyone could use. In 1993, he joined forces with Richard M Stallman to provide world-class legal representation and expertise to the free software movement. With RMS, he conceived, wrote, and created a public process for discussion and adoption of GPLv3, the current version of the world’s most widely-used free software license.
In addition to his work with free software developers, Professor Moglen has advised major IT companies and national governments around the world. In 2010, he testified before the European Commission on the FOSS consequences of Oracle Corporation’s acquisition of Sun Microsystems, and before the US Congress on Internet privacy and consumer protection. He has appeared numerous times on software- and privacy-related issues as amicus curiae before the US Supreme Court.
Professor Moglen earned his PhD in History and his law degree at Yale University. After law school, he clerked for Judge Edward Weinfeld of the United States District Court in New York City and for Justice Thurgood Marshall of the United States Supreme Court. He has taught at Columbia Law School since 1987 and has held visiting appointments at Harvard University, Tel Aviv University, and the University of Virginia. In 2003, he was given the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Pioneer Award for efforts on behalf of freedom in the electronic society. Professor Moglen is admitted to practice in the State of New York and before the United States Supreme Court.
GPG key fingerprint: 3D9E 9A07 DF32 E2BE B4D0 0A5F 1642 13F5 3E90 8FC3
Mishi Choudhary | Legal Director
Mishi Choudhary is working with SFLC following the completion of her fellowship during which she earned her LLM from Columbia Law School and was a Stone Scholar. Prior to joining forces with SFLC in 2006, she practiced as a High Court and Supreme Court litigator in New Delhi.
At SFLC, Mishi is the primary legal representative of many of the world’s most significant free software developers and non-profit distributors, including Debian, the Apache Software Foundation, and OpenSSL.
In 2010, she founded SFLC.in, since which time she has divided her time between New York and New Delhi. Under her direction, SFLC.in has become the premier non-profit organization representing the rights of Internet users and free software developers in India.
As of 2015, Mishi is the only lawyer in the world simultaneously to appear on briefs in the US and Indian Supreme Courts in the same Term. She consults with and advises established businesses and startups using free software in their products and service offerings in the US, Europe, India, China and Korea. In 2015 she was named one of the Asia Society’s 21 young leaders building Asia’s future. In 2016 she was selected as an Aspen Fellow as part of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
In addition to an LLM, she has an LLB degree and a bachelors degree in political science from the University of Delhi. Mishi is a member of the Bar Council of Delhi, licensed to appear before the Supreme Court of India, all the State High Courts in India, in the State of New York, and before the Southern District of New York.
GPG key fingerprint: 580B F0E4 D019 6BB9 E834 B00D 4029 6A28 A27A E0EC
Daniel Byrnes | Counsel
Daniel holds a Juris Doctor (JD) from Brooklyn Law School where he studied intellectual property law. He also has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Hunter College. Before joining SFLC as Counsel, he worked in the Law Department of the New York City Transit Authority. Prior to practicing law, he was a front end web developer for a Fortune 500 company for nearly a decade. Daniel advises clients on a range of matters relating to free and open source software including trademarks, licensing, non-profit governance and corporate governance. He is admitted to practice in the State of New York.
GPG key fingerprint: C2FC 2054 ED7A 02A1 D494 31D1 E77B 0381 D0A8 5E1B
Tanisha Madrid-Batista | Business Manager
Prior to serving as Business Manager for the Software Freedom Law Center, Tanisha Madrid-Batista worked as Coordinator to the Center for the Study of Law and Culture at Columbia Law School. She holds a Master of Science degree in Information and Digital Resource Management from Columbia University. She also has a bachelor’s degree in English from Columbia College. She has a strong interest in improving techniques for digital asset management to effectively leverage and transfer knowledge within organizations, an interest she pursues as Executive Director of the Protocol Freedom Information Foundation.
GPG key fingerprint: 88F5 8A91 A2FF 5531 187F 59C0 3F85 03F3 77E9 5DD8
Daniel Gnoutcheff | Systems Administrator
Daniel is a student of mathematics and a enthusiast of free culture who joined the SFLC in the spring of 2015 after finally succumbing to his love of computing. Determined to bring software freedom into the reach of everyone he knows, he has committed a string of drive-by contributions to a variety of FLOSS projects, including a Google Summer of Code stint for NetworkManager. He possesses a Bachelors in mathematics and computer science from Union College (Schenectady, NY), having graduated in the summer of 2013.
GPG key fingerprint: 90B7 FC79 C80B EB9E AE76 D1DF 0838 797B A908 99F7
Eben Moglen | Chairman
See above under Staff.
Diane M. Peters | Director
Ms. Peters is General Counsel for Creative Commons, a nonprofit organization devoted to providing the public with free legal tools to enable sharing and use of creative content. Prior to working with Creative Commons, Ms. Peters was Legal counsel to the Mozilla Corporation and the Mozilla Foundation, a non profit public benefit corporation dedicated to preserving innovation and openness on the internet through the development of open source software, including the Firefox web browser. Ms. Peters has also served as General Counsel to Open Source Development Labs, a non profit trade association supporting development of the Linux kernel and adoption of the GNU/Linux operating system. Ms. Peters earned a B.A. in political science from Grinnell College and a J.D. from Washington University School of Law, where she served as an executive editor of the Washington University Law Quarterly. After law school, Ms. Peters clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in Chicago.
Daniel Weitzner | Director
Daniel J. Weitzner is the Founding Director of the MIT Internet Policy Research Initiative and Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab. His group studies the relationship between network architecture and public policy, and develops new Web architectures to meet policy challenges such as privacy and intellectual property rights. He teaches Internet public policy in the MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department.
From 2011-2012, Weitzner was the United States Deputy Chief Technology Officer for Internet Policy in the White House, where he lead initiatives on online privacy, cybersecurity, Internet copyright, and trade policies to promote the free flow of information. He also was Associate Administrator for Policy at the United States Commerce Department National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Weitzner was a member of the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team.
Weitzner has been a leader in the development of Internet public policy from its inception, making fundamental contributions to the successful fight for strong online free expression protection in the United States Supreme Court, crafting laws that provide protection against government surveillance of email and web browsing data. His work on US legislation limiting the liability of Internet Service Providers laid the foundations for social media services and supporting the global free flow of information online.
Weitzner’s computer science research has pioneered the development of Accountable Systems architecture to enable computational treatment of legal rules and automated compliance auditing. At the World Wide Web Consortium, he lead the development of security and privacy standards, and Linked Data architectures now used to make data on the Web easier to analyze. While at MIT he launched the Web Science Research Initiative with Tim Berners-Lee, Wendy Hall, Nigel Shadbolt and James Hendler, a cross-disciplinary research initiative promoting research on the technical and social impact of the Web.
Before joining MIT, Weitzner was founder and Deputy Director of the Center for Democracy and Technology, and Deputy Policy Director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation. He has testified before the United States Congress, the European Commission, and leading international bodies. Weitzner has law degree from Buffalo Law School, and a B.A. in Philosophy from Swarthmore College. His writings have appeared in Science magazine, the Yale Law Review, Communications of the ACM, the Washington Post, Wired Magazine and Social Research. In 2012 he was named to the Newsweek/Daily Beast Digital Power Index as a top Navigator of global Internet public policy. He received the International Association of Privacy Professionals Leadership Award in 2013.