UWM grad Nadella named Microsoft CEO

Satya Nadella, a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, has been named chief executive officer of Microsoft Corp.

Nadella, 46, is the third CEO since the Redmond, Wash.-based company was founded in 1975. He replaces Steve Ballmer, who is retiring. Nadella previously served as enterprise and cloud chief.

Nadella graduated from UWM in 1990 with a master’s degree in computer science. Microsoft’s cloud and enterprise group builds and runs the company’s computing platforms, developer tools and cloud services. Nadella received the UWM Chancellor’s Innovator Award in 2013.

A native of Hyderabad, India, Nadella also has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Mangalore University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Chicago. He worked in Sun Microsystems’ Chicago office before joining Microsoft in 1992.

Since he joined the company, Nadella has driven strategic and technical changes across Microsoft’s product suite, particularly in the area of cloud infrastructure and development.

“Microsoft is one of those rare companies to have truly revolutionized the world through technology, and I couldn’t be more honored to have been chosen to lead the company,” Nadella said. “The opportunity ahead for Microsoft is vast, but to seize it, we must focus clearly, move faster and continue to transform. A big part of my job is to accelerate our ability to bring innovative products to our customers more quickly.”

Founder Bill Gates will shift to a new role, technology advisor, while John Thompson will replace him as chairman.

“During this time of transformation, there is no better person to lead Microsoft than Satya Nadella,” Gates said. “Satya is a proven leader with hard-core engineering skills, business vision and the ability to bring people together. His vision for how technology will be used and experienced around the world is exactly what Microsoft needs as the company enters its next chapter of expanded product innovation and growth.”

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