Jim Rutt is the former CEO of Network Solutions — a technology and Internet company whose main focus is domain name registration, but also provides web hosting, search engine optimization, and pay per click management. He is also the former chairman of the Santa Fe Institute.
Rutt was hired by Network Solutions in 1999 during the dot-com boom, and negotiated the company’s $15 billion acquisition by Verasign, as it continued to operate as an independent subsidiary. He stepped down as a Verasign executive, and left the company in 2001.
After his retirement, Rutt was appointed by the governor of New Mexico to serve on the State Investment Council. The council manages New Mexico’s $20.5 billion permanent endowment, including the Land Grant & Severance Tax permanent funds, as well as investments for 21 other governmental clients. The permanent funds deliver more than $800 million in benefits for New Mexico schools and taxpayers every year.
He was researcher in residence at the Santa Fe Institute from 2002 to 2004, studying the application of complexity science to financial markets, social simulations, agent based models, and evolutionary artificial intelligence. Subsequently, he joined the Board of Trustees of the Santa Fe Institute, and was elected chairman in 2010.
Rutt was also the executive producer of the award-winning film “Zombiewood” and in 2012 he co-founded the Game-B Network for social and political change.
Most recently, Rutt co-founded a makerspace in a historical renovated building in downtown Staunton, Virginia. It serves as a communal space for community members to come together to make things, learn about manufacturing and tools, share ideas, and create new projects.
Rutt received his bachelor’s degree in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.