Historic First Post-Transition Opening Ceremony at ICANN57
Honorable Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad talks about the Digital India program.
ICANN's Samiran Gupta, Head of India Stakeholder Engagement, kicked off yesterday's ICANN57 Opening Ceremony. The event featured speeches by ICANN Chair Stephen Crocker,  Ravi Shankar Prasad ( Minister for Law & Justice, and Electronics & Information Technology),  KT Rama Rao (Minister of Information Technology, Panchayat Raj and Municipal Administration and Urban Development of Telangana) , APNIC Director General Paul Wilson, and ICANN CEO and President Göran Marby. ICANN's Theresa Swinehart, Senior Vice President, Multistakeholder Strategy and Strategic Initiatives, presented the ICANN Leadership Awards.
The event was capped off by a Swagathanjali, a welcome dance conceived by Deepika Reddy, and performed by Reddy along with other eminent dancers.
Patrik Fältström, León Sánchez, Thomas Rickert, Jonathan Robinson, Izumi Okutani, Marc Blanchet
Congratulations, 2016 ICANN Leadership Award Winners! 
Yesterday, ICANN announced the recipients of the 2016 Leadership Awards. In years past, the award has recognized an individual in the community for extraordinary commitment to ICANN. This year, the leadership and dedication shown from many community members who contributed to a successful IANA stewardship transition made it impossible to select only one winner.  This year's winners are:

Alissa Cooper, Mohamed El Bashir and Patrik Fältström
IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group
Mathieu Weill, León Sánchez and Thomas Rickert
Cross Community Working Group on Enhancing ICANN Accountability
Lise Fuhr and Jonathan Robinson
Cross Community Working Group to Develop an IANA Stewardship Transition Proposal on Naming Related Functions
Nurani Nimpuno and Izumi Okutani
Numbering Resources: Consolidated Regional Internet Registry IANA Stewardship Proposal Team 
Marc Blanchet and Leslie Daigle
IANAPLAN Working Group

The winners were recognized during the ICANN57 Opening Ceremony.  
Today's ICANN57 Notable Sessions
08:30 - 09:30 
Hall 3 (Main)
08:30 - 09:45 
MR 1.02
08:30 - 10:30 
Hall 2
09:45 - 10:45 
Hall 3 (Main)
11:00 - 12:00 
MR 1.01
12:30 - 13:45 
MR 1.01
13:30 - 15:00 
Hall 3 (Main)
13:45 - 15:00
14:00 - 15:00 
Hall 4
15:15 - 16:30
Hall 4
Focus on Indian ISPs and Telcos
The half-day session, "ISPs and Telcos: Connect with What's Next - Companies, Clients and Connectivity" is especially designed for international and Indian Internet service providers and telecommunications companies attending ICANN57. The discussion will focus on the growth of the Internet in India.
If you are interested in understanding what role the ISPs and Telcos will play in the future of the Internet, recent developments in the Internet's Domain Name System, and how critical Internet infrastructure will add value to your business, this is a good opportunity to hear directly from industry experts.
The Internet Service Providers and Connectivity Providers Constituency has joined with the Cellular Operators Association of India and the Internet Service Providers Association of India to put on this session. The list of speakers includes senior executives from Indian and global companies such as BSNL, Qualcomm and Tata Communications. 
Please join us at the session. Come and share your views and network with your counterparts from the ISPs and Telcos during the provided lunch.
Two Tribal Ambassadors Attend ICANN57 
Funded by ICANN via a North American Regional At-Large Organization (NARALO) pilot project, Valerie Fast Horse and April Tinhorn - the first two ICANN Tribal Ambassadors from the First Peoples community - are immersing themselves in ICANN57. They have been mainly attending At-Large community sessions and ICANN Fellowship Program activities. This pilot project aims to increase the awareness of ICANN among tribal communities in North America. 
New GDD Initiatives: gTLD Marketplace Health Index and Registry Service Provider Certification Program
Tomorrow morning, join us for an overview of the gTLD Marketplace Health Index initiative. The beta index, published in July 2016, presents statistics and trends related to gTLDs. ICANN intends to publish these statistics twice a year.
Monday, 7 November:
09:00 - 10:15, Hall 2:  gTLD Marketplace Health Index Metrics
In the afternoon, members of the ICANN organization will host an early-stage discussion on the development of a certification program for registry back-end service providers. The session will explore how such a program could look, as well as its potential benefits.
Monday, 7 November:
Sunday Is Constituency Day at ICANN57
The stakeholder groups and constituencies of the Generic Names Supporting Organization will have open meetings to advance their work and engage with community members. This complements the joint meetings between these groups and the ICANN Board of Directors - also happening throughout the day. The joint meetings are also open. See the ICANN57 schedule for specific session details!
Walid Al-Saqaf (Yemen)
Chair of the Middle East and Adjoining Countries Strategy Working Group (MEAC-SWG)
Al-Saqaf has participated in four ICANN meetings.

Walid Al-Saqaf is a Postdoctoral Researcher at Stockholm University and a Board of Trustee member at the Internet Society. He is currently chairing the Middle East and Adjoining Countries Strategy Working Group (MEAC-SWG), whose aim is to provide a multistakeholder, community-­led avenue to develop a three-year ICANN regional strategy for 2016 - 2019. He is also a member of the Non-Commercial Users Constituency (NCUC). An ICANN Fellowship alumnus, he occasionally coaches newcomer ICANN Fellows. 
Call to action:
Increase involvement of new community members from the Middle East and Adjoining Countries at ICANN. This will lead to greater diversity at ICANN since it is an organization for the world and needs to to keep embracing active participants from across the globe.
Kasek Galgal (Papua New Guinea)
Board Member - Pacific Island Chapter of the Internet Society (PICISOC)

Kasek Galgal is a Papua New Guinean academic who serves as a Board member for the Pacific Island Chapter of the Internet Society (ISOC). With Internet governance being a relatively new field within his home country of Papua New Guinea, Kasek has pioneered various initiatives to build awareness of the importance of the Internet and how it is shaped - including running workshops on the Internet ecosystem and starting an Internet interest group at his university.
Kasek's involvement in ICANN started when he got involved in the Asia-Pacific Regional At-Large Organization (APRALO) after being elected to board of PICISOC, which is an At-Large structure. He became more engaged within the Internet community after being awarded a Fellowship to the 2015 New Zealand Internet Governance Forum (NetHui) as well as a Fellowship for APNIC 42 (the conference of the Regional Internet Registry for the Asia Pacific). He was later awarded an ISOC Ambassadorship to the 2015 Internet Governance Forum, where he made contributions to the main output document, policy frameworks for "Connecting the Next Billion." He is passionate about using the Internet for development and about increasing participation of small developing island states in the Internet space.
Dirgayuza Setiawan (Indonesia)
Dirgayuza Setiawan (Yuza), 27, is a technologist from Indonesia. He is an author of 12 books, 11 of which are on technology. Driven by his passion for making the Internet safer and better for children, in 2015 he decided to read a master's course on the Internet at Oxford University's Internet Institute. At Oxford, Yuza learned about the central role ICANN plays in ensuring the Internet's stable and secure operation. Wanting to find out more about ICANN, he applied and went to ICANN56 Helsinki as a NextGen delegate, and is now attending ICANN57 Hyderabad as a NextGen ambassador.