Bill Gates, who co-founded Microsoft, and his wife Melinda, divorce after 27 years of marriage.
The couple, who co-chair the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a global health and development charity, announced their split on Twitter, saying they would continue to work together on the foundation.
“After a lot of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we made the decision to end our marriage,” they said in a joint statement posted by each on their Twitter feed. “Over the past 27 years, we have raised three amazing children and built a foundation that works around the world to enable everyone to lead healthy and productive lives. We continue to share our conviction in this mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe that we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our life. We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life. “
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The couple met in 1987 after Melinda became a product manager at Microsoft and sat side by side at a business dinner in New York City.
In a 2019 Netflix documentary titled “Inside Bill’s Brain,” Melinda laughed at the memory of finding a whiteboard in Bill’s bedroom that listed “the pros and cons of getting married,” CNBC reported.
Melinda Gates spent a decade developing multimedia products at Microsoft before moving on to focus on family and philanthropy, according to the Gates Foundation website. The couple have three children: Jenn, Rory and Phoebe.
In 2015, Melinda Gates launched Pivotal Ventures, an investment and incubator to help solve issues facing women and families. Her book, “The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World,” was published in 2019.
In a 2019 USA TODAY editorial, she denounced the still-present gender gap. “Based on data from its well-respected Global Gender Gap Index, the WEF estimates that it will take the United States another 208 years to achieve gender equality. You read that right. At the current rate. change, gender equality will not come to the United States until 2227. “
The Gates Foundation, founded in 1994, has more than 1,600 employees and has provided grants of more than $ 54.8 billion, according to the foundation’s website.
Last year, Bill Gates, formerly the richest person in the world, said he was stepping down from Microsoft’s board to focus on philanthropy.
Gates was CEO of Microsoft until 2000 and since then he has gradually reduced his involvement in the company he started with Paul Allen in 1975. He left his day-to-day role at Microsoft in 2008 and served as chairman of consulting until 2014..
Gates, 65, is No. 4 on the Forbes billionaire list. with $ 124 billion, behind Jeff Bezos ($ 177 billion), Elon Musk ($ 157 billion), Bernard Arnault & Family ($ 150 billion) … and ahead of Mark Zuckerberg ($ 97 billion).
Contribute: The Associated Press
This story is developing and will be updated.
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