​​GÉANT ​Executive Team

The Executive Team operates in a unified manner across the two GÉANT offices.

This team provides collective leadership of all GÉANT activities, with each member having specific areas of lead responsibility. Click on the names of the team members for further information​.

Erik Huizer
Erik Huizer - Chief Executive Officer
Erik has been GÉANT CEO since July 2017.

Erik has a long-standing involvement with the NREN community and was previously CTO of SURFnet, and a member of the GÉANT Association Board until he stepped down to take up the CEO position. Before SURFnet he served as Managing Director for ICT at the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO).

Erik has fulfilled various board-level functions of Internet related organisations and for over 30 years has been involved in education and research networking, Internet standardisation and Internet governance. For his contributions to the Internet he was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame in 2014.
Alex de Leeuw - Chief Financial Officer
Alex joined GÉANT as Chief Financial Officer in April 2024. He brings close to 20 years of experience in the technology and telecoms industry. He worked at Deloitte, serving various Dutch and international companies. He also spent two years seconded at the World Economic Forum, gaining experience with public-private partnerships. After that, he joined Naspers (known in Europe as Prosus), where he gained deep financial and operational experience in managing hypergrowth technology companies.

He holds a master's in economics from Erasmus University in Rotterdam and in IT audit from Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, and qualifications in M&A and sustainability.
Cathrin Stöver - Chief Communications Officer
With more than 20 years of experience working in global telecommunications and the roll-out of network infrastructures across various continents, Cathrin is a highly effective global team leader, successfully working across borders and cultures in complex multi-dimensional projects. With superior levels of cultural awareness and inter-personal skills, she builds rapport at first encounter and delivers passionate messages about otherwise dry roll-outs of infrastructures, focusing on the benefits and opportunities. Cathrin is committed to collaboration and knowledge sharing and transfer as well as inclusive team building based on a foundation of mutual trust.

Cathrin has belonged to the GÉANT team since 1997, holding various positions as the organisation has grown and developed, always with a specific focus on growing the geographic reach of the GÉANT network and the deepening of the global R&E collaboration for the benefit of the global research and education community. Following the minor reorganisation at the beginning of 2020, Cathrin now carries the overall responsibility for the Marketing Communications and Design teams and additionally the EU Liaison Team.

Cathrin holds a European Business degree from the FH Osnabrück in Germany.
Bram Peeters - Chief Network Operations Officer
Bram joined GÉANT in January 2018, following a role at Nokia where he project managed the delivery of new technology solutions to Nokia customers.

Bram is well known to the GÉANT community thanks to his 10+ years at SURFnet, where he joined as a Network Expert, developing the SURFnet network and services. He quickly rose to Head of Network Services, where his team was responsible for the exploitation and innovation of SURFnet’s network services, from the fibre network up to the routed network; during his time at SURFnet he also acted as Program Manager for the “Connecting Infrastructures” innovation program covering both the fixed backbone network as well as developments in the ‘wire-free’ area.

Bram holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from The Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and an MBA from TiasNimbas Business School.
Matthew Scott - Chief Programmes Officer
Matthew joined GÉANT in June 1996 as Commercial Manager, responsible for its financial operations, later becoming CFO in February 2003 and then General Manager in 2010. Now as Chief Programmes Officer, he leads the GÉANT Project Office which oversees 20+ projects including GN4-3 and GN4-3N, and is responsible for the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) process.

An engineer and qualified accountant with 20 years’ experience in the R&E networking area, Matthew has a deep understanding of GÉANT’s key stakeholders’ requirements and uses his strategic outlook, combined with strong analytical and problem-solving skills, collaborative approach and attention to detail to help the organisation deliver to its objectives and where possible exceed expectations.

Matthew is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, qualified Chartered Accountant and holds an Engineering degree from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne.
Paul Rouse - Chief Community Relations Officer
Paul joined GÉANT in 2011 as Head of Procurement, leading and growing the procurement team, and quickly established himself as a highly effective, professional and valued member of the community. In that time he has overseen extensive procurement activity relating not only to the pan-European GÉANT network where he has secured extensive savings, but has also played a central role in the success of GÉANT’s Infrastructure-as-a-Service framework, as well as supporting research community engagement with EUMETSAT, ESA and ESnet. In fact, Paul’s involvement and influence continues to benefit numerous projects and initiatives across Europe and beyond, including the Eastern Partnership Connect project EaPConnect, the Collaboration Asia-Europe-1 (CAE-1) 100Gbps link between Singapore and London, as well as the BELLA submarine cable linking Europe and Latin America.

Prior to GÉANT, Paul held several procurement roles in commercial and public sector organisations and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply. He holds a BSc in Technology and Management Science, Business and Technology.

Paul was appointed Chief Community Relations Officer in early 2020, and is responsible for Partner and Stakeholder Relations, International Relations, Research Engagement, Community Support, and Learning and Development.
Klaas Wierenga - Chief Information & Technology Officer
Klaas has been appointed as Chief Information & Technology Officer, responsible for GÉANT's Trust & Identity, Security, Cloud, Product Management, Software Development and IT teams.

Klaas has an extensive background in innovation management, with an emphasis on identity, mobility and security. Before joining GÉANT, Klaas was a senior consulting engineer and identity architect at respectively Cisco Systems' Research and Advanced Development group and Cloud Infrastructure Services group. Before that, Klaas was an innovation manager and manager of Middleware services at SURFnet, the Netherlands NREN. There, Klaas built the first generation of federated identity systems at SURFnet and was the creator of the eduroam service for WiFi roaming in research and education.

In 2012 Klaas was the recipient of the first GÉANT (then TERENA) Community Award for creating eduroam. Klaas served as chair of the GÉANT Task Force on Mobility for more than 10 years, as chair of the IETF Abfab working group, as a member of the IETF Security Directorate and as a TNC programme committee member and chair.

Klaas is (co-)author of 'Building the Mobile Internet' (Cisco Press, 2011) and 'Wireless Networking in the Developing World' (2013), as well as three RFCs. He also holds five US patents.

In September 2019 Klaas was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame in recognition for his invention of eduroam - the global Research and Education WiFi roaming service.


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