UWM alum Satya Nadella named to the 2018 Time 100 list

Microsoft CEO and UWM alumnus Satya Nadella has been named to the 2018 Time 100 List. Produced by the editors of Time magazine, it recognizes the 100 people who influenced world change during the previous year, regardless of the nature of that change.

Microsoft CEO and UWM alumnus Satya Nadella
Microsoft CEO and UWM alum Satya Nadella, pictured giving a campus lecture in 2013.

Nadella’s entry was written by Walter Isaacson, a former managing editor at Time who has written biographies on Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein and Benjamin Franklin. Isaacson praised how Nadella followed his principles while restoring the Microsoft’s “spirit of innovation,” including his dedication to product reliability. Since Microsoft named Nadella CEO in 2014, Isaacson noted, the company’s market value has increased 130 percent.

In Nadella’s recent book, “Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft’s Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone,” he recalls arriving at UWM in 1988. He was 21 years old and embarking on a computer science master’s degree in the College of Engineering & Applied Science. “It was beautiful, and my life in the United States was just beginning,” writes Nadella, who was raised in Hyderabad, India. He completed his UWM degree in 1990.

Nadella was once described by Business Week as a member of Bill Gates’ “kitchen cabinet of techno-whizzes.” He’d been with Microsoft for 21 years when he became the company’s CEO.

“I am a learner,” Nadella said in an interview at the time. “I fundamentally believe that if you are not learning new things … you stop doing great and useful things. Our industry does not respect tradition – it only respects innovation.”

The Time 100 was first published in 1999, when the magazine chose the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. It became an annual feature for the magazine in 2004.

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