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Bill Gates Leaves Microsoft Board To Focus On Philanthropy Efforts

The company says Gates is departing to focus on his philanthropic priorities including “global health, development, education, and his increasing engagement in tackling climate change.”

Microsoft co-founder and technology adviser Bill Gates has stepped down from the Redmond, Wash.-based tech giant’s board of directors.

The company said Gates will dedicate more time to his philanthropic priorities including “global health, development, education, and his increasing engagement in tackling climate change.” Microsoft said Gates will continue to serve as technology adviser to CEO Satya Nadella and other leaders in the company.

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In 2008, Gates moved out of a day-to-day role in the company to spend more time on his work at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He served as Microsoft’s chairman of the board until February 2014.

“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,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in a statement. “And Microsoft and the world are better for it. The board has benefited from Bill’s leadership and vision.”

The Microsoft board will now consist of 12 members, including Nadella, John W. Thompson, Microsoft independent chair; Reid Hoffman, partner at Greylock Partners; Hugh Johnston, vice chairman and chief financial officer of PepsiCo; Teri L. List-Stoll, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Gap, Inc.; Sandra E. Peterson, operating partner, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice; Penny Pritzker, founder and chairman, PSP Partners; Charles W. Scharf, chief executive officer and president of Wells Fargo & Co.; Arne Sorenson, president and CEO, Marriott International Inc.; John W. Stanton, chairman of Trilogy Equity Partners; Emma Walmsley, CEO of GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK); and Padmasree Warrior, founder, CEO and president, Fable Group Inc.

Microsoft shares declined 3.26 percent to $153.65 in after-hours trading Friday after the news.

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