The International Game Developers Association, a group that advocates for the gaming industry worldwide, has lost its executive director. After nearly five years there, Kate Edwards is stepping down from the association. Trent Oster, who is currently on the IGDA’s board of directors and is also CEO of Beamdog, is taking over as interim executive director until the IGDA finds a replacement.
“Kate has been an important industry leader for the IGDA in this role, doing heroic work as an advocate for developers of all backgrounds,” Oster said in a statement. “Her accomplishments have carried the IGDA through tough times and helped countless developers on their journeys. We look forward to seeing what Kate accomplishes in what is certain to continue to be a bright career.”
In a news release, the IGDA called out some of Edwards’ notable achievements during her time with the association, including the establishment of chapters in Bangladesh, Egypt, Estonia, Georgia, and Tunisia.
“Under the guidance of the IGDA’s board of directors, Edwards took firm stances on social issues, being among the first to speak out against the misogyny and hate perpetuated by GamerGate and against the detrimental practice of ‘crunch’ time, standing up to the NRA which tried to blame tragedies such as Newtown Connecticut on video games, and advocating on behalf of the international game developer community when President Trump’s administration recommended the travel ban,” the statement says.
Speaking to VentureBeat, Edwards said it was always her intention to stay for a period of around three to five years, so leaving now is not a surprise. She added that her split from the IGDA was amicable. Additionally, Edwards confirmed that she doesn’t have another gig lined up as of yet, though she’s contemplating a number of paths.
“I’m entertaining a variety of options, from another leadership role, other forms of advocacy, and of course my core consulting expertise in content culturalization,” Edwards said.
You can read the full story here at VentureBeat.
For more, you can check out GameSpot’s interview with Edwards from May 2015, when she told us about harassment in gaming, the need for developers to take on risks, and more.