Bill Gates shows up at Microsoft to celebrate its non-profit efforts

Microsoft co-founder and chairman Bill Gates only makes rare appearances at the company he helped to build these days. Indeed, he's stated more than once that he has no plans to return full time to Microsoft, as he is too busy with his non-profit efforts with the the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

This week, Gates returned to the company's Redmond, Washington headquarters for one of those rare visits to join with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in celebrating the company's employees. Specifically, Microsoft said in a press release that Gates and Ballmer revealed at a town hall event that the company and its team members have now raised $1 billion in the past 30 years for about 31,000 nonprofits and community organizations.

Currently, 35,000 of the company's employees, or about 65 percent of Microsoft’s US workforce, participate in its Employee Giving Campaign. Microsoft matches employee donations to non-profits and also matches any employee's volunteer time to those kinds of groups at $17 per hour.

Gates is quoted in the release as saying:

From its earliest days, Microsoft employees have been involved in their communities and have helped contribute to their vitality and growth. Thirty years and $1 billion later, that impact can be felt around the world. The company and its employees have much to be proud of at this remarkable milestone and, I know, will continue to make a positive impact in the years ahead.

Source: Microsoft press release | Image via Microsoft

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Wonder when he'll be getting his Nobel prize.

On second thoughts - probably never. Now that it's a joke of a prize and given to nobodies or people undeserving.

Thank you Bill for helping India get their IT game going just to steal jobs away from the U.S. Great efforts man!

Over the years, Bill and Steve Jobs kept in touch with each other outside of their work lives. Although they were serious business competitors they still shared a friendship. During that time, I believe Steve shared with Bill he was dying from cancer early on, probably after 2005 Steve realized it was too late. This I also believed caused Bill to re-evaluate his own life and think about whether saving a life, doing something for humanity was more important than launching a new version of Windows/Office. Bill probably saw from early on that Microsoft will always be here, even when he is dead in some form, whether it will become a completely services/devices company or something similar to IBM.

Its probably something Steve probably would have liked to have done too, not sure. He said he wanted to do something in philantropy when he started NeXT, but had to cancel it because it required too much of his time. I should also note personally, Steve is a notoriously mean person, his kindness only happened when it benefitted him or Apple.

He has so much money for 3x life time. Very nice of him to give 1/2 of his fortune and his philanthropy work to help third world countries.

Svggarden said,
He has so much money for 3x life time. Very nice of him to give 1/2 of his fortune and his philanthropy work to help third world countries.
Interesting to note Bill Gates has pledged 95% of his net worth to his charities.. Might want to check your facts before you find your foot in your mouth.

That said, he will probably be able to live comfortably off of the interest on the remaining 5%..

Svggarden said,
He has so much money for 3x life time. Very nice of him to give 1/2 of his fortune and his philanthropy work to help third world countries.

When his net worth was $50Bn, he used half of it to start the foundation.
When his net worth climbed back to $63Bn, he diverted half of that wealth back into the foundation. He helped Warren Buffet create the Billionaire Challenge, to which many American billionaires have pledged support.

Your comment is a perfect example of the entitlement attitude plaguing the US right now. Your connotation seems that you believe that his wealth would be better spread around domestically. That is completely preposterous and absurd. That's why America is a democracy. If you think your country needs help from billionaires, try doing some research and elect officials who will support lifting people up out of poverty and educating them.

Bill's focus is for the millions of people who would not otherwise get a shot at LIFE. You get your shot by being born in a 1st world country, or at the very least immigrating to one. NOW do YOUR part and make it the best first world country there is by participating in the democratic process.

deadonthefloor said,

When his net worth was $50Bn, he used half of it to start the foundation.
When his net worth climbed back to $63Bn, he diverted half of that wealth back into the foundation. He helped Warren Buffet create the Billionaire Challenge, to which many American billionaires have pledged support.

Your comment is a perfect example of the entitlement attitude plaguing the US right now. Your connotation seems that you believe that his wealth would be better spread around domestically. That is completely preposterous and absurd. That's why America is a democracy. If you think your country needs help from billionaires, try doing some research and elect officials who will support lifting people up out of poverty and educating them.

Bill's focus is for the millions of people who would not otherwise get a shot at LIFE. You get your shot by being born in a 1st world country, or at the very least immigrating to one. NOW do YOUR part and make it the best first world country there is by participating in the democratic process.

Yea, so true! Have you seen the poor people here in the states compared to the poor and starving in Africa and other places. The one's here are fat as ****!

Bills work in this area is well documented. Say what you will about MS but you don't pull that off without a strong backing and culture of donating/helping:

"Currently, 35,000 of the company's employees, or about 65 percent of Microsoft's US workforce, participate in its Employee Giving Campaign. Microsoft matches employee donations to non-profits and also matches any employee's volunteer time to those kinds of groups at $17 per hour."

Thats pretty cool and $1Bn over 30 years, tip of the hat MS and its employees.

tsupersonic said,
That's nice of Bill and Microsoft!

I'm not trolling, but you'd never see Apple do this. And can you imagine Steve Jobs doing anything for a charity let alone dedicate his life to it? The thought is laughable. Yet i've heard some people call him a "hero" before, which i think is disgusting.

Bill is a better man in every way, including at running a business as MS completely dominated Apple when Bill run the company.

NoClipMode said,

I'm not trolling, but you'd never see Apple do this. And can you imagine Steve Jobs doing anything for a charity let alone dedicate his life to it? The thought is laughable. Yet i've heard some people call him a "hero" before, which i think is disgusting.

Bill is a better man in every way, including at running a business as MS completely dominated Apple when Bill run the company.

For this reason I gave up using social networks for, like, a month, until all those idiots stopped crying all over the internet. Hero, my ass. The amount of idol worshiping was freakishly annoying.

There are only two things in the world that make a man - a better man: serving in the police force (which I think is the most noble thing a person can do in their life, instead of wasting it away in some needless war) and giving to charity. Robin Hood was my greatest childhood hero - yes, he was kind of evil, but he had a good cause. Mr. Gates isn't the perfect man either, but he decided to make other people's lives better, and that's what counts in my book.
Steve Jobs did none of it.

Gornot said,

For this reason I gave up using social networks for, like, a month, until all those idiots stopped crying all over the internet. Hero, my ass. The amount of idol worshiping was freakishly annoying.

There are only two things in the world that make a man - a better man: serving in the police force (which I think is the most noble thing a person can do in their life, instead of wasting it away in some needless war) and giving to charity. Robin Hood was my greatest childhood hero - yes, he was kind of evil, but he had a good cause. Mr. Gates isn't the perfect man either, but he decided to make other people's lives better, and that's what counts in my book.
Steve Jobs did none of it.


Being in the Marine Corps and having served on a combat deployment, I would disagree with your comment. Our work is equally important, just because we aren't directly helping US citizens, we are helping the villagers in that country. I certainly know I've sacrificed 5 years of my life with no want of recognition, Just because you don't see the war doesn't mean good isn't being done, despite the media only covering the negatives.

Anyway, Bill Gates is a great man, and he has done a lot for people.

NoClipMode said,

I'm not trolling, but you'd never see Apple do this. And can you imagine Steve Jobs doing anything for a charity let alone dedicate his life to it? The thought is laughable. Yet i've heard some people call him a "hero" before, which i think is disgusting.

Bill is a better man in every way, including at running a business as MS completely dominated Apple when Bill run the company.

I think you are not completely correct. First of all, Steve Jobs wasn't as rich as Gates, but yes he did give a lot to charity. But these things were never disclosed. His wife is on the board of many charitable organizations. They do have a foundation, but it's not as famous as the Gates foundation. Steve was a very private man. Secondly, even Apple has a charity payment matching program for employees. Apple employees can donate to any charity and Apple will match that payment and donate to that same charity.

NoClipMode said,

I'm not trolling, but you'd never see Apple do this. And can you imagine Steve Jobs doing anything for a charity let alone dedicate his life to it?

i can't, at least since he died...