Included in Forbes’ list of the world’s richest persons since 1987, American investor, philanthropist and Microsoft’s principal founder Bill Gates was also named one of the 100 most influential figures of the 20th century by Time magazine. Apart from launching a business that would become the largest PC software company worldwide, Mr. Gates’ merits also include a strong involvement in a variety of humanitarian causes that earned him awards and international recognition.
To pay tribute to the one ranked as the fourth most powerful person in the world by Forbes in 2012, we have created the Bill Gates Timeline, which highlights some of the most significant moments in his life and career.
Taking a keen interest in programming since his teen years, Gates wrote his very first computer program when he was just 14 and studying at Lakeside School. It was during his enrollment at this private preparatory school that he met Paul Allen, together with whom he would found Microsoft in 1975. Graduating with one of the highest SAT scores ever recorded, young Gates continued to display a remarkable level of intelligence devising innovative algorithms during his 2 years at Harvard. He nevertheless decided to drop out of college to fully dedicate himself to launching his own company – Microsoft.
After Microsoft went public in 1987, he became the youngest billionaire ever at 31 and held primary responsibility for the company’s product strategy until 2006. After that point, he gradually diminished his presence and active involvement and channeled his attention towards a series of important charity and humanitarian endeavors. As a result, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016, France’s highest national award (Legion of Honor) in 2017, and India’s third-highest civilian award for his social and philanthropic efforts.
The Bill Gates chronology was built with Office Timeline, a lightweight add-in for PowerPoint that enables users to quickly create professional-looking timelines and Gantt charts. The image is free to download and share and can be restyled or updated using the Office Timeline Plus Edition.
Download the Bill Gates Timeline for PowerPoint here.
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