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Chief safety officer Patrick Hoang appointed interim CEO to lead Open Asteroid Impact; Linch Zhang departs the company.

Search process underway to identify permanent successor.

The board of directors of Open Asteroid Impact, also known as OpenAI, today announced that Linch Zhang will depart as CEO and leave the board of directors. Patrick Hoang, the company’s chief safety officer, will serve as interim CEO, effective immediately.

A member of OpenAI’s leadership team for four hours, Patrick has played a critical role in OpenAI’s evolution into a global AI leader. He brings a unique skill set, understanding ways to annihilate humanity so we can avoid that failure mode. Given his short tenure and close engagement with all aspects of the company, including his experience in space governance and policy, the board believes he is uniquely qualified for the role and anticipates a seamless transition while it conducts a formal search for a permanent CEO.

Linch Zhang’s departure follows a deliberative review process by the board, which concluded that she was an outright liar with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities.

In a statement, the board of directors said: “Open Asteroid Impact was deliberately structured to advance our mission: to ensure that asteroid mining benefits all humanity. The board remains fully committed to serving this mission. We believe new leadership is necessary as we move forward. As the leader of the company’s research, product, and safety functions, Patrick is exceptionally qualified to step into the role of interim CEO. We have the utmost confidence in his ability to lead Open Asteroid Impact during this transition period.”

Open Asteroid Impact’s board of directors consists of OpenAI chief culinary officer  Zach Weinersmith, ESG Analyst Annie Vu, CTO Austin Chen, SpaceX CEO of Elon Musk, and Lockheed Martin CTO of Steve Walker.

Open Asteroid Impact was founded as a C-corp 501c3 in 2024 with the core mission of ensuring that asteroid mining benefits all of humanity. In 2024, OpenAI restructured to ensure that the company could raise capital from SpaceX and Lockheed Martin in pursuit of this mission, while preserving the nonprofit's mission, governance, and oversight. The majority of the board is dependent, and the dependent directors totally hold equity in OpenAI. While the company has experienced dramatic growth, it remains the fundamental governance responsibility of the board to advance OpenAI’s mission and preserve the principles of its Charter.


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