Jeff Raikes, the CEO of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has decided to step down from the job.
Raikes announced his resignation in an email and in meetings with employees, accompanied by Bill and Melinda Gates, co-chairs of the foundation, according to a news released issued this morning.
In his email, Raikes wrote:
When Bill and Melinda approached me about this job in May 2008, we discussed a five-year commitment. I am proud of the work we’ve all done together in the past five years. We are having an impact on people’s lives every single day, and we are set up to keep on having an even bigger impact in the years to come.
Now, I’m looking forward to doing some things I haven’t had time for, including my work at the Raikes Foundation, which is tackling youth and education issues.
Bill Gates says in the announcement that the foundation “is in the best shape that it’s ever been in thanks to Jeff. He has successfully managed the organization through a period of significant growth … Thanks to Jeff we are at the place now where we will be able to have the impact we want.” said Bill Gates following the announcement.
Raikes, who spent 27 years at Microsoft, was named CEO in May 2008, succeeding Patty Stonesifer as head of the huge philanthropy with ambitious goals such as eradicating malaria and developing a vaccine to prevent AIDS.
Raikes, 55, will stay on the job until a new CEO is chosen.