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John Palfrey

Chair of the Board and Trustee

John Palfrey was elected chair of Knight Foundation’s board of trustees in March 2014. He joined the board in 2011. He chairs the Nominating Committee and is an ex-officio member of all committees.  

Palfrey, an authority on technology and civic engagement, is the head of school for Phillips Academy, Andover. Previously, he was founding board chair of the Digital Public Library of America, executive director of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, and the Henry N. Ess III Professor of Law and vice dean for library and information resources at Harvard Law School.

Palfrey is author of BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google,” (Basic Books, 2015). He is also co-author of “Born Digital: Understanding the First Generation of Digital Natives,” (Basic Books, 2008), “Interop: The Promise and Perils of Highly Interconnected Systems” (Basic Books, 2012) and “Enhancing Child Safety and Online Technologies,” a report for a multi-state group of attorneys general.