REDMOND, Wash., June 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) today announced the appointment of Andrea L. Taylor as the director for U.S. Community Affairs. Taylor brings to the role more than 20 years of experience working with a variety of organizations around the globe and a track record of programs designed to bridge the digital divide. (Photo: NewsCom: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO ) In her new role, Taylor will set the strategy for and manage the implementation of Microsoft's Unlimited Potential program; Puget Sound community engagement; and employee community programs in the U.S., including matching gifts and volunteering. Taylor will work closely with nonprofit organizations, governments and businesses in the U.S. to advance employability and work-force development. "A strong economic future depends on the strength and readiness of the U.S. work force, and it is important to support efforts to ensure that technology and skills are accessible to underserved communities across the country," Taylor said. "I look forward to building innovative partnerships and to sharing improved technology tools to help broaden digital inclusion in the United States." Taylor will report to Akhtar Badshah, senior director of Community Affairs at Microsoft. "Andrea's passion for education and philanthropy, along with her experience in partnering with nonprofit and private-sector organizations, makes her the ideal choice to further the goals of Microsoft's Community Affairs team -- to help provide training and tools that help create social and economic opportunities that can transform communities and help people realize their potential," Badshah said. Before joining Microsoft, Taylor was the founding director of the Media Fund at the Ford Foundation, creating a $50 million global portfolio of media investments. Working in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe and the U.S., her program provided support for hundreds of projects including "Sesame Street" in China and South Africa, acclaimed television series such as "Eyes on the Prize" and "The Pacific Century," and National Public Radio (NPR). Taylor is an adjunct faculty member at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where she developed and taught a new course last year, "New Media, Power, and Global Diversity," to help prepare the next generation of academic leaders for policy and practice in the age of digital media. She has also served as a delegate to four global summits of the United Nations: Tunis in 2005, Geneva in 2003, Beijing in 1995, and Cairo in 1994. About Microsoft Community Affairs Microsoft and its employees have long recognized the importance of being engaged in supporting communities around the world. Last year the company donated $61 million in cash and $273 million in software to 9,000 nonprofit organizations. A majority of the company's community investments are made in support of Unlimited Potential, a global program that supports community technology centers in IT skills training. Unlimited Potential is part of the company's commitment to broadening digital inclusion and enhancing work-force development for a quarter of a billion people by 2010. More information about Microsoft's community investments can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/unlimitedpotential . About Microsoft Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential. NOTE: Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
SOURCE Microsoft Corp.