Who are the new OpenAI board members?

Not only did OpenAI bring Altman back but higher management also reshuffled the board that had played role in CEO’s dismissal
OpenAI CEO Sam Altman. — X/@sama
OpenAI CEO Sam Altman. — X/@sama

ChatGPT-maker OpenAI has been the talk of the town for several days as the high-drama surrounding its CEO Sam Altma’s ouster and then rejoining grabbed all attention.

OpenAI brought Altman back just days after his ouster as well as installing a revamped board that could bring sharper scrutiny to the startup at the heart of the AI boom, but strong support from investors including Microsoft may give Altman more leeway to commercialise the technology.

Not only did OpenAI bring Altman back the higher management also agreed to reshuffle the board of directors that had played a major role in the CEO’s dismissal.

Read more: Sam Altman to rejoin OpenAI as CEO

Reuters reported that OpenAI's new board will boast more experience at the top level and strong ties to both the US government and Wall Street.

Bret Taylor, formerly co-CEO of Salesforce and Larry Summers, former U.S. Treasury Secretary, along with Quora CEO and current director Adam D'Angelo will be part of the board, OpenAI said.

Let's get to know the new board members:

  • Taylor, 43, is an American computer programmer and entrepreneur, who is also a board member at Shopify. Taylor will chair the OpenAI board.
  • Summers, 68, is an American economist who has served as U.S. Secretary of the Treasury from 1999 to 2001. A professor at Charles W Eliot University, Summers is also President Emeritus at Harvard Summers is also on the board of Jack Dorsey's Block Inc (SQ.N) and Skillsoft Corp.
  • D'Angelo, 39, is an American internet entrepreneur, best known as the founder of California-based social question-and-answer website and online knowledge market Quora. A Computer Science graduate, D'Angelo was previously CTO of Facebook for nearly two years till June 2008.

‘Altman seems awfully powerful’

Reuters, citing analysts, reported that Altman’s return will likely strengthen his grip on the startup and may leave the ChatGPT creator with fewer checks on his power as the company introduces technology that could upend industries and corporate governance experts.

Director of the Centre for Investor Protection at the National University of Singapore Business School Mak Yuen Teen said: "Sam's return may put an end to the turmoil on the surface, but there may continue to be deep governance issues."

"Altman seems awfully powerful and it is unclear that any board would be able to oversee him. The danger is the board becomes a rubber stamp," he said.

Endorsing Teen’s views, GlobalData analyst Beatriz Valle said: "Altman has been invigorated by the last few days, but that could come at a cost.”

“He has too much power now," she added.

Valle stated: "The fact that Summers and Taylor will join OpenAI is quite extraordinary and marks a dramatic reversal of fortunes in the company.”

It should be noted that OpenAI's previous board consisted of entrepreneur Tasha McCauley, Helen Toner, director of strategy at Georgetown's Center for Security and Emerging Technology, OpenAI chief scientist Ilya Sutskever, as well as Quora CEO Adam D'Angelo, who also sits on the new board.

It was not immediately clear if any of the other directors would remain, including Sutskever, who joined in the effort to fire Altman and then signed onto an employee letter demanding his return, expressing regret for her "participation in the board's actions."