Python's Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL) Guido van Rossum today announced he's stepping down from the role.
On the Python mailing list today, van Rossum said, "I would like to remove myself entirely from the decision process. I'll still be there for a while as an ordinary core dev, and I'll still be available to mentor people—possibly more available. But I'm basically giving myself a permanent vacation from being BDFL, and you all will be on your own."
He credits his decision to step down as partly due to his experience with the turmoil over PEP 572: "Now that PEP 572 is done, I don't ever want to have to fight so hard for a PEP and find that so many people despise my decisions."
van Rossum says he will not appoint a successor and leave that to the development team to decide upon.
For old-time's sake, see Linux Journal's interview with Guido van Rossum from 1998.