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Michiel Leenaars receives NLUUG Award

Life-time achievement award recognises significant contribution to a more open society

Utrecht, May 10th 2022

Today the NLUUG association dedicated the ninth NLUUG Lifetime Achievement Award to Michiel Leenaars, the current director of strategy at NLnet foundation. Leenaars received the Award from Patrick Reijnen, the chair of NLUUG, during the 2022 NLUUG Spring conference in Utrecht, the Netherlands.

NLUUG is the association of (professional) Open Systems and Open Standards users in the Netherlands, and one of the oldest computer-related associations in the world. Since the late seventies, NLUUG has brought together the community of systems administrators, programmers, researchers and IP network professionals in the Netherlands. Since 1997 the NLUUG Award is infrequently granted to individuals or organizations who have contributed to the improvement and/or proliferation of the (use of) Open systems or Open standards. The most recent laureate was Olaf Kolkman, a prominent internet standards contributor and former Internet Architecture Board chair who received the award in 2015.

During his career Leenaars has been involved with numerous important activities in the field of open standards, free and open technologies, open education and the open internet. In recent years this includes in particular the Next Generation Internet initiative championed by the European Commission, where he helped define the overall vision and leads several large research and innovation actions that provide major funding to open initiatives.

Leenaars is not the first NLnet employee upon which this honour is bestowed in NLnet's 40 year history - in 2010 NLnet co-founders Teus Hagen and Wytze van der Raaij were awarded together for their historical pioneering work on the internet, as was CWI's Piet Beertema ("godfather of .nl") who was the first awardee 25 years ago. The exclusive list of awardees also includes a number of high profile computer scientists such Wietse Venema (creator of ao. Postfix and SATAN), Guido van Rossem (creator of the Python programming language), Bram Moolenaar (creator of VIM) and prof. dr. Andrew Tanenbaum (Minix).

About NLnet

NLnet Foundation (in Dutch: Stichting NLnet) is a philanthropic (private) not-for-profit organisation that invests its own trust funds as well as funds that it manages on behalf of other organisations such as the European Commission to bring the open information society closer. The foundation supports strategic initiatives that contribute to an open information society, especially where these are aimed at development and dissemination of open standards and (network related) open source technology. Additionally the foundation wants to contribute to the societal debate on these subjects.