REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Microsoft Alumni Foundation announced the winners of its prestigious Integral Fellows Award program for 2013, and hundreds of Microsoft alumni were on hand to hear from several leading American philanthropists – Warren Buffett (Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.) and Microsoft alumni Bill and Melinda Gates (Co-chairs and Trustees, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation). It all happened at the Foundation's fifth annual celebration event Friday night, November 1, on the Microsoft campus.
The Integral Fellows Award program, also in its fifth year, honors Microsoft alumni who have made a meaningful difference in the daily lives of others through philanthropy and nonprofit work.
The winners are:
"As a member of the Microsoft alumni community, I witness firsthand the energy, business savvy, and creativity that my peers bring to the philanthropy world," said Jeff Raikes, Chairman of the Board, Microsoft Alumni Foundation, and CEO, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "This year's Integral Fellows Award winners, Ida Cole of Seattle Theatre Group, and Hadi Partovi of Code.org, represent some of the best examples of Microsoft alumni tackling big problems and striving to make a difference in the world."
The winners each will receive a $25,000 grant for their nonprofit organizations. They were chosen from among five finalists and 21 nominees considered for the awards.
Here is more information about each and their nonprofit organization:
Ida Cole is Founding Director of Seattle Theatre Group (Seattle, Wash.), originally known as Seattle Landmark Association. She created STG with the initial vision of saving a beloved historic theater from demolition, and eventually transformed it into the largest cultural institution in King County. From the acquisition of the Paramount Theater, to educational outreach at the Moore Theater, to diverse programming for the Neptune Theater, STG has become a model for cultural innovation that other cities now emulate. Ida believes in the common humanity we can discover through art is a cause worth saving—a cause that can unite communities and inspire every age and ethnic group. Ida served as Director of International Products and Marketing and Vice President of Applications while at Microsoft.
Hadi Partovi, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Code.org (Seattle, Wash.), is leading the charge to create a strong, widely implemented computer science curriculum as a way for students to secure stable employment and solve discrepancies in social mobility. Hadi has identified 10,000 schools interested in a 21st century computer science curriculum and 25,000 software engineers who have volunteered to help create one. Hadi's father was a co-founder of Iran's primary technology university, and Hadi received his first computer at the age of 10. He started coding immediately thereafter, since his father said "learn to write your own," instead of buying his son software or games. Now Hadi seeks to have all American students have the opportunity to write their own. Hadi was a General Manager while at Microsoft.
Judges for the Integral Fellows Award program included:
- Phyllis Campbell, Chairwoman, Pacific Northwest, JPMorgan Chase & Co.
- Bill Drayton, Chair and Chief Executive Officer, Ashoka: Innovators for the Public
- Dr. Chris Elias, President, Global Development Program, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Constance Rice, Managing Director, Knowledge Management, Casey Family Programs
- Mark Shriver, Senior Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, and senior advisor to the CEO, Save the Children
- Thomas J. Tierney, Chairman and Co-founder, The Bridgespan Group
The Beacon Award, previously called the Member's Choice award, was given to Suzi LeVine, Board Chair and Board Co-founder, Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences Advisory Board (http://ilabs.washington.edu). The Award was renamed to honor the philanthropic impact of Bill Henningsgaard, last year's inaugural Award winner. Prior to the event, alumni had the opportunity to vote for the nominee whose nonprofit would receive a $2,000 grant.
"Five years ago we introduced the Integral Fellows Award to recognize and support the alumni whose post-Microsoft pursuits are dedicated to improving their communities, whether on a local scale or global," said Marylou Brannan, Microsoft Alumni Foundation Executive Director. "It is a joy to gather together at our annual 'Reunion with a Purpose' with the award winners and nominees, fellow alumni and friends to reaffirm our commitment to changing lives and making a positive difference in the world."
Before the awards presentation, alumni had the opportunity to meet the Integral Fellows nominees, with each one using a Microsoft Surface Pro that was generously donated by the company.
Alumni also previewed upcoming technology, seeing up-close, the next-generation gaming console, Xbox One. Surface was also used as part of a photo booth allowing alumni to have their photos taken next to significant icons from Microsoft history.
Generous support for the 2013 Microsoft Alumni Foundation Celebration comes from Microsoft Corp., JeffreyM Consulting, Financial Reserve, Kisameet Glacial Clay, Microsoft Alumni Network, UVL Rx Therapeutics, and others.
About the Microsoft Alumni Foundation
The Microsoft Alumni Foundation was established to catalyze the collective power of the Microsoft Alumni family and leverage its resources to make a difference for others. Launched in 2007, the Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public nonprofit organization with its worldwide headquarters based in Bellevue, Wash., USA. Board members are Jeffrey Raikes (chair); Charles Hirsch (vice president); Akhtar Badshah (vice president); Craig Bruya (treasurer); Sharon Maghie (secretary), Tony Audino, Carla Lewis, Brad Smith and Dawn Trudeau. The Executive Director is alumna Marylou Brannan.
Note to editors: For more information about the Microsoft Alumni Foundation, please visit http://www.microsoftalumni.org/
SOURCE Microsoft Alumni Foundation