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TERENA Secretary General Receives Royal Recognition for Contribution to the Internet

The RIPE NCC congratulates Karel Vietsch on his appointment as an Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau, which is one of the highest honours that can be bestowed in the Netherlands.

In a private ceremony in Leiden yesterday, Karel was recognised for his outstanding contribution to research and education networking, and to the Internet in general. Karel was part of the Dutch Ministry of Education and Sciences from 1984, and headed the Department of Information and Infrastructure from 1992-1996. As the secretary general of TERENA since 1996, Karel has continued to show a strong commitment to the organisation despite an illness that caused him to be on leave since 2012.

Another early achievement was Karel's contribution to the RIPE NCC, with his recognition that it should break away from TERENA and become an independent organisation. Daniel Karrenberg, RIPE NCC Chief Scientist and one of the founders of RIPE, said, "Karel contributed to it becoming a globally respected institution in the self-managed Internet. I am of the opinion that Karel's contribution to the self-management of the Internet was crucial in its formative period. Without Karel the Internet in Europe would perhaps have been less successful."

Speaking on behalf of TERENA staff, Acting Secretary General Valentino Cavalli said, "We owe a lot of what we are now to Karel and we are thrilled that his important contribution to research and education networking has been recognised with this royal honour. We congratulate Karel wholeheartedly on this achievement." 

TERENA has created a page where people can post messages of congratulations that will be passed on to Karel.