Curriculum Vitae

Personal Information

Isabel Drost-Fromm

Isabel Drost-Fromm is a member of the Apache Software Foundation and president of the InnerSource Commons Foundation. She's interested in all things search and text mining, and has experience in open source project governance and open collaboration.

Talks, publications

see separate list of talks.


1999 - 2003
Dipl-Inf (FH) at the University of applied sciences Mittweida "Applied Computer Science" (specialization in Practical Computer Science)

Leadership experience

2020 - current
Co-founding director InnerSource Commons Foundation (President since May 2021)

2017 - current
Open Source Strategist Europace AG with a strong focus on InnerSource. Moved teams towards pull request based collaboration, in particular when crossing team boundaries. Reduced silos as a result. Enabled collaboration between Europace AG and other subsidiaries of Hypoport AG (helping with process, legal implications, tooling and community building). Resulting learnings were upstreamed and published within the InnerSource Commons Patterns group. Development of internal trainings closely linked to the InnerSource Commons learning path working group.

2017 - current
Co-Founder and Co-Organiser FOSS Backstage; responsible mainly for initial vision, promotion, community contacts, content selection. FOSS Backstage grew from being mainly composed of ASF contacts in 2017 to a truely neutral space for behind the scenes of Open Source discussions event. For sustainability reasons in the hands of Plain Schwarz, who took the event to the next level during the covid-19 pandemic.

2019 - 2020
Member of the inaugural Open Source and Intellectual Property Advisory Group of the United Nations Technology Labs (UNTIL)

2018 - 2019
Director Apache Software Foundation

2016 - 2017
Director Apache Software Foundation

2008 - current
Member of the Apache Software Foundation; mentored incubating projects OpenWhisk, Apache Drill, OpenNLP and Stanbol, supported mxnet during incubation period. Awarded "Member Apache Software Foundation" in 2010, GSoC mentor for Apache Mahout, in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Co-Founder, Committer, PMC member Apache Mahout; responsible mainly for community management, motivating and mentoring new contributors and committers, outreach.

2010 - 2015
Co-Founder and Co-Organiser Berlin Buzzwords; responsible mainly for promotion, initial sponsorship contacts, community management and content selection. Berlin Buzzwords grew from 330 attendees in 2010 to roughly 700 in 2012.

Nokia Gate5/ HERE Maps: Scrum master for the POI category search team; responsible for transforming the team to more effective communication, reflection on shared processes, supporting the team to self organise, impediment identification and removal.

Nokia Gate5/ HERE Maps: Community liaison - Responsible for managing the Search team's budget to sponsor technical conferences related to the team's technical tasks; identified conferences that should be supported, negotiated sponsorship contracts with conference organisers, established contacts between conference organisers and Nokia internal teams responsible for booth management, supported distribution of free conference tickets internally, supported engineers wanting to participate as speakers.

2010 - 2011
Neofonie GmbH: Member of the DICODE EU research project - three-fold role: Project manager for the Neofonie sub-team, responsible for aligning work both with internal Neofonie teams as well as research partners. In terms of development responsible for setting up and integrating Apache Hadoop, HBase and Mahout for social media monitoring. In addition DICODE was pitched to the EU for releasing results under OSS licenses, as such I provided guidance on how to run the project as an open source project as well as support for community outreach and bonding with open source projects.

2008 - 2011
Founder/ organiser of Berlin Hadoop Get Together. The meetup grew from 16 attendees in 2008 to roughly 70 attendees in 2011.

Co-organiser of the first European NoSQL meetup in Berlin (>80 attendees).

Development experience

2013 - 2016
Software Engineer at Elasticsearch GmbH; part of the query refactoring team fighting technical debt and increasing test coverage of each and every query that can be issued to Elasticsearch; before that development of template query and initial template search endpoint.

Software Engineer at Nokia Gate 5 GmbH/ HERE Maps; 2012/13: Software Engineer POI category search team working on category ranking and search quality; 2011/12: POI De-Duplication - software developer in the POI de-duplication team to eliminate near-duplicate search results; 2011: Location Analytics - administration of the Berlin research Hadoop Cluster, support for location teams (system introduction; data-intake, -conversion and -processing support) for Apache Hadoop, Scripe and Pig.

Junior Software Engineer at Neofonie GmbH.

Scientific assistant at the Max Planck Institut für Informatik. Development of a ranking algorithm based on click data.

Scientific assistant at the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. Development a ranking algorithm based on click data.

Internship at the Google Switzerland GmbH. Member of the search quality team.

since 2003
Scientific assistant at the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. Machine Learning and Link Mining. Development of new algorithms for mining linked data, such as web pages or scientific publications. Design and implementation of search engine spam web pages based on link- and content information. Development and implementation of clustering algorithms exploiting the link structure among documents for topic identification.

Teaching experience

Lecturer at TU Berlin/ DIMA. Topics: ``Large Scale Data Mining with Apache Hadoop'', integrated project/ seminar on ``Large scale data mining with Apache Mahout'' with the goal of motivating students to participate in the upstream open source projects.

2004 - 2005
Lecturer at HU Berlin. Topics: Seminar applied computer science II, Seminar Text Mining and Applications, Seminar KDD Cup 2004.

Language skills:

German: native proficiency, English: full professional proficiency, French: elementary proficiency, Russian: no proficiency