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Longtime Apple Board Member Bill Campbell Passes Away

billcampbellFormer Intuit chairman and Apple board member Bill Campbell has passed away following a prolonged battle with cancer, reports Re/code. Known as "The Coach" around Silicon Valley, Campbell was known for providing sage advice to the leaders of some of the Bay Area's biggest companies, including Apple and Google. At one point, he was even assisting Apple and Google at the same time, something Steve Jobs wasn't happy with. From a 2014 interview with Fortune:
"Steve would say, 'If you're helping them you're hurting me.' He would yell at me," recalls Campbell, whose normal banter typically needs to be sanitized for most publications. " I'd say, 'I can't do HTML, come on. I'm just coaching them on how to run their company better.'
A longtime friend of Steve Jobs, Campbell first joined Apple under John Sculley, where he took on the role of Apple's Vice President of Marketing. After disagreements with Sculley, Campbell, who was a onetime coach of the Columbia Lions football team, he then founded Go Corporation, which was sold to AT&T.

From there, Campbell took on the role of CEO of Intuit and joined Apple's board of directors when Steve Jobs returned to the company in 1997. Campbell remained on Apple's board of directors for 17 years until his resignation in July of 2014.


Campbell was with Apple through all of its transitory periods, and following his retirement, he had kind words to share about Apple's current direction under Tim Cook. "Apple is an institution now," he said in the same Fortune inteview. "Tim's done an amazing job of building bench strength within the organization. There's a whole set of new and smart people who are taking over. You're watching that company grow up."

Update: Apple has posted a tribute to Bill Campbell on its website homepage, a day after his death.

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Top Rated Comments

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37 months ago

Good guy.

....He didn't really die on tax day, did he?


... don't we all (just a little bit) ?
Rating: 10 Votes
37 months ago
I remember watching his speech at Steve's Apple campus funeral, great storyteller. Sad.
Rating: 7 Votes
37 months ago
Sad to hear. A well spoken, and great supporter of Apple and helped with their regrowth. Will be missed by longtime fans of Apple for sure!
Rating: 7 Votes
37 months ago
RIP. I never understood why Quicken for Mac sucked so hard while he was Intuit's CEO and on Apple's board.
Rating: 5 Votes
37 months ago
Given Google's current market share in phone OS's it seems Steve was indeed right.

Apple in reality should have purchased significant ownership in Google along the way. It would have had more impact than share buy-backs and dividends. They could have entered into a hardware contract with their partner and freeze out Samsung, HTC, and all the other handset manufacturers who have no hope of a good OS. Also would not be open source.
Rating: 2 Votes
37 months ago
The second photo with the soup cans in the background made me chuckle. Clearly a man with a sense of humor. RIP
Rating: 2 Votes
37 months ago
A gentle man, a gentle soul. I remember his speech at Steve's celebration of life like I watched it today.
Rating: 2 Votes
37 months ago
That's a shame. Curse you cancer.
Rating: 2 Votes
37 months ago
Sigh. Cancer. It has struck my family numerous times. I am saddened anytime I hear this disease claim another life. There is still much love and life to be lived at 75. RIP.
Rating: 2 Votes
37 months ago
Like a 'rebuild' with sport teams... Apple needs to step up their college recruiting/start up acquisitions for talent, while the old guard is still around to pass on knowledge.
The Jony Ives, Phil Schillers of Apple aren't going to be around forever... like this guy, they will all soon move on, or pass away..it would be a shame if all that knowledge/wisdom is lost and the next gen has to sit there and reinvent the wheel.
Rating: 2 Votes

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