Melinda French Gates

Co-Chair
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Before she ever dated Bill Gates, let alone married him, Melinda French was a damned good product manager at Microsoft. She brought to market Microsoft Publisher, which popularized the step-by-step wizards that have since spread through software everywhere. And she made a valiant, if failed, effort to radically simplify computers with Microsoft Bob. Now, with her husband, she heads the world's largest charitable foundation, bringing to philanthropy a rare combination of compassion and the business skills she honed at Microsoft. Ms. Gates received a bachelor's degree in computer science and economics from Duke University in 1986 and a master's in business administration from Duke's Fuqua School of Business in 1987. She is a mother of three and a former member of the board of trustees of Duke and a former co-chair of the Washington State Governor's Commission on Early Learning.

Posts With Melinda Gates

Melinda Gates on “Generation C”

“Reject the cynics that say technology is flattening your experience of the world. The people who say that technology has disconnected you are wrong, but so are the people who say technology has automatically connected you.”

Melinda Gates, delivering the commencement speech at Duke University

Tech Scores on Forbes’ 100 Most Powerful Women List: Gates, Sandberg, Mayer and More

Sandberg, Mayer, Gates and more rate.
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Education Documentary Featuring Bill Gates Gets First Distribution Deal at Sundance

Bill Gates was at the Sundance Film Festival this weekend–not just to sample some of the fare at the well-known independent film festival, held annually in Park City, Utah, but also to appear at the screening of a documentary about the crisis in public education in which he appears and that scored the first distribution deal at the event. The worldwide rights for “Waiting for Superman,” directed by Davis Guggenheim and produced by Participant Media, were sold to Paramount Vantage, a unit of the Viacom movie studio.

A Grim Year for PC Sales

QOTD: They Can Have All The Zunes They Want, Though

There are very few things that are on the banned list in our household. But iPods and iPhones are two things we don’t get for our kids.”

Melinda Gates on the two items you don’t want to be caught dead with in the Microsoft chairman’s home

The Entire D6 Interview With the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates (4 of 4)

We’re posting all the interviews from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference that took place in late May. Here’s Part 4 of 4 of an interview Walt Mossberg did with the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates. In this video, Melinda Gates answers questions from the audience about the time frame for the foundation, models of philanthropy, how businesses can become more philanthropic, how to improve troubled schools by eliminating “facelessness,” entrepreneurs and how to get better teachers.

The Entire D6 Interview With the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates (3 of 4)

We’re posting all the interviews from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference that took place in late May. Here’s Part 3 of 4 of an interview Walt Mossberg did with the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates. In this video, Melinda Gates talks about the best ways to fix the broken parts of the public high school educational system in the U.S.

The Entire D6 Interview With the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates (2 of 4)

We’re posting all the interviews from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference that took place in late May. Here’s Part 2 of 4 of an interview Walt Mossberg did with the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates. In this video, Melinda Gates talks about how the massive foundation focuses its efforts, its vaccine programs, her and her husband’s increased involvement and the public broken high school educational system in the U.S.

The Entire D6 Interview With the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates (1 of 4)

We’re posting all the interviews from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference that took place in late May. Here’s Part 3 of 4 of an interview Walt Mossberg did with the Gates Foundation’s Melinda Gates. In this video, Melinda Gates talks about her early days as a Microsoft product manager, how to take technology to the developing world, the politics of vaccines and how the Gates Foundation can be “catalytic” wedge.

D6 Conference Recap

Here are all of the highlights from the sixth D: All Things Digital conference, organized by day and speaker: Day One Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, Microsoft You would have loved Windows 1.0. Walt. You would have LOVED it.” –Ballmer Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Windows 7 Demo Day Two Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com People loved their horses, too. But you don’t keep riding your horse to work just because you love it.” –Bezos on the difference between physical books and digital ones Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Bobby Kotick, Activision The social element has really transformed the gaming experience.” — Kotick on the impact of games like Guitar Hero Session post  |  Video Guitar Hero IV Demo with Tony Hawk and Paula Abdul Howard Stringer, Sony If we were any more successful, we’d be bankrupt.” –Stringer on the success of Sony’s LCD business Session post  |  Video Barry Diller, IAC Hollywood is a community that’s so inbred, it’s a wonder the children have any teeth.”   Session post  |  Video Michael Dell, Dell I could take him.” –Dell on his chances of success in a brawl with Apple CEO Steve Jobs Session post  |  Video Jerry Yang and Sue Decker, Yahoo I will never be a CEO again.” –Yang Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Jeff Bewkes, AOL AOL is the Rodney Dangerfield of the Web. We don’t get no respect.”   Session post  |  Video Nathan Myhrvold, Intellectual Ventures We invest in the creation of ideas… It’s like Baby Mama, with me as the mama.”   Session post  |  Video Demo: G.ho.st Web Operating System Lets users access their desktop from any computer with an Internet connection. Session post  |  Video Tom Glocer, Thomson Reuters We have one great advantage over bloggers: we write once, and sell many times to many different media outlets.” Session post  |  Video Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook I won’t ever stop until you’re either the biggest thing around, or you’re dead.” –Kara Swisher on her relentless coverage of Facebook Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Rupert Murdoch, News Corporation I want to meet Obama. I want to know if he’s going to walk the walk.”     Session post  |  Full Session Videos: One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six Day Three Demo: evri An application that graphs the Web via grammatical information. Session post  |  Video Demo: 23andMe Web-based, direct-to-consumer genome services. Session post  |  Video Melinda Gates, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation All lives are equal.” Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Demo: TransMedia’s Glide A mobile-operating system that cuts across all operating systems. Session post  |  Video Tom Rogers, TiVo The TV set and its primary position in the home isn’t going anywhere in the future.” Session post  |  Videos: One and Two Demo: Deka The “Luke Arm” prosthesis, a state-of-the-art bionic arm. Session post  |  Video Kevin Martin, FCC and Lowell McAdam, Verizon Wireless You’re the chairman of the FCC. How did you allow this to happen?” –Walt Mossberg grills Martin on the lousy broadband situation in the States Session post  |  Videos: One and Two
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