While Microsoft execs were hosting an all-day event for press today, they interrupted the schedule to say they were making an important announcement at 1:30 -- Bill Gates will transition from a full-time role at Microsoft to a full-time role at Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in two years.
Brier Dudley wrote April 17 that Gates will start shifting more of his attention from software development to charity work, and will increase his involvement with the $29 billion Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation he and his wife started in 2002.
The next day, Gates responded to Brier's column in an email. Brier had posted the response on his blog.
Here is what Gates said:
"The evolution of the Foundation organization is something that makes sense for the foundation. Melinda and I have the same role we have always had. Patty [Stonesifer, head of the foundation] does a great job running the foundation and using the finite time she gets from us very effectively.
"Patty has driven a number of organization changes as the foundation has grown and they have been critical to the ambitious goals the foundation has.
"So this organization doesn't reflect anything about the co-founders role related to the foundation."