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Allen to Leave Microsoft Board

Paul Allen, who founded the software dynasty known as Microsoft Corp. with his friend Bill Gates 25 years ago, will resign from corporation's board of directors at its annual meeting on November 9.

According to its annual meeting proxy statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday, Allen will remain with Microsoft (www.microsoft.com) as a senior strategy advisor, particularly to Gates and Steven Ballmer, Microsoft's president and CEO. Also departing the board on Nov. 9 will be Richard Hackborn, a board member since 1994, who recently stepped down as chairman at Hewlett-Packard Co. (HP, www.hp.com).

Allen left his duties as head of research and product development at Microsoft in 1982 to battle Hodgkins disease, but retained his seat on the board and his position as the company's second-largest stockholder. He has since invested in more than 140 technology companies through his investment speculation firm, Vulcan Ventures, Inc. He also is one of the owners of the Seattle Seahawks of the NFL and the Portland Trail Blazers of the NBA. Allen is listed by Forbes Magazine as the third richest man in the world behind Gates and Larry Ellison, chairman of Oracle Corp. (www.oracle.com).

Allen is credited with being instrumental in developing some of Microsoft's most successful products, including MS-DOS, Word, Windows and the Microsoft Mouse. Microsoft will not replace Allen or Hackborn on its board and will reduce the body structure from eight to six members. - Ted Williams

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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