Microsoft has announced that co-founder Bill Gates has stepped down from the company’s Board of Directors.
Gates has not had a day-to-day role in the company since 2008, when he transitioned away to spend more time with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Even following today’s announcement, he will continue on as Technology Advisor to CEO Satya Nadella.
“It’s been a tremendous honor and privilege to have worked with and learned from Bill over the years. Bill founded our company with a belief in the democratizing force of software and a passion to solve society’s most pressing challenges. And Microsoft and the world are better for it. The board has benefited from Bill’s leadership and vision. And Microsoft will continue to benefit from Bill’s ongoing technical passion and advice to drive our products and services forward. I am grateful for Bill’s friendship and look forward to continuing to work alongside him to realize our mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.
“On behalf of our shareholders and the Board, I want to express my deep appreciation to Bill for all his contributions to Microsoft. As a member of the Board, he challenged us to think big and then think even bigger. He leaves an enduring legacy of curiosity and insight that serves as an inspiration for us all,” said John W. Thompson, Microsoft independent board chair.
Even though Gates will continue to have input in his role as Technology Advisor, there’s no denying this is the end of an era for Microsoft.