Follow us:

Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

June 19, 2007 at 12:39 PM

Musical chairs in the philanthropy world

We knew about big changes going on over at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, but it’s getting hard to keep track of all the comings and goings.

The Gates Foundation hired a new communications director, Heidi Sinclair, a Seattle native who is currently president and CEO of PR firm Burson-Marsteller in Europe. In September, Sinclair will start to oversee the foundation’s communications strategy and act as senior adviser to Bill and Melinda Gates.

Her past positions include vice president of corporate strategy at software company Borland, hardly Microsoft’s biggest fan. Back then Sinclair complained Microsoft was stifling competition.

“Microsoft resembles the IBM of yore: the 800-lb. gorilla that sits anywhere it wants,” she said in a 1993 Time magazine article.

She’s not the only one swapping seats. Senior policy officer Monica Harrington will leave the foundation this month to work with NGOs on innovation initiatives and help build a new online photo editing service called picnik.com.

Two figures in the Seattle philanthropy scene recently moved to Google.

Jacquelline Fuller, former deputy director of the global health program at the Gates Foundation, is now leading Google.org’s advocacy efforts.

And Blaise Judja-Sato, founder of Seattle-based non-profit VillageReach, is now working on global economic development at Google.org.

Incidentally, Gates’ recent commencement address puzzled Harvard economics professor Robert Barro, who argues Microsoft provides more benefit to society than the charitable foundation.

Comments | More in Philanthropy

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►