Leaving Microsoft … words we keep hearing from Redmond; as of late!

The latest to leave Microsoft, Microsoft Windows Vice President Brad Brooks marks the third high profile employee to announce their departure from Microsoft this year. With us, only 20 days into the new year does this mean bad for Microsoft?

Last year saw a few departures and it is to be expected for any company, especially one the size of Microsoft. What is notable is the employees themselves, and the reason they are leaving!

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  • Brad Brooks will leave Microsoft for Juniper as Vice President of Worldwide Enterprise Marketing and Solutions. He will join Juniper CEO Kevin Johnson, who left Microsoft in 2008 as President of what was then called Microsoft’s Platforms and Services Division to become Juniper CEO. Brooks will be leaving Microsoft during the first week of February.

Brad Brooks is credited with the Windows 7 Ad Campaign, Windows 7 Was My Ideas! Brooks joined Microsoft in 2002 to start working on Windows XP Media Center Edition


  • Bob Muglia, President of Microsoft’s Stalwart Server & Tools Division will be leaving Microsoft this coming summer but has not made his future plans public.

Muglia worked with the The Server and Tools division which makes corporate infrastructure software such as Windows Server, SQL Server and virtualization software and credited by other other employees as a key employee with Windows and Office. Muglia joined Microsoft in 1988 as a program manager for SQL Server, then worked on Windows NT. He managed the Office group, then worked on .NET. He joined the Server and Tools group in 2003 and rose to the position of division president in January 2009.


  • Johnny Chung Lee, Developer for Microsoft’s Project Natal Team. Though not a high ranking official, Lee has been a vital contributor for the Kinect. Lee will be leaving Microsoft for Google as a Rapid Evaluator for a special projects team.

Lee gained popularity for the Wii hacks and was hired by Microsoft in 2009 to join the Project Natal Team which is responsible for the very popular Kinect.


There were five departures in 2010 that are notable as well.

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  • Stephen Elop, former President of the Microsoft Business Division left Microsoft to become Nokias CEO.

Elop joined Microsoft in 2008 to head the Microsoft Business division, which is one of the two largest Microsoft businesses. Elop is partly credited with helping Office success which grew 15% after the release of Office 2010.


  • Robbie Bach, former President of the Entertainment and Devices division retired from Microsoft  and aside of personal reasons there has been no word of his future with any other companies.

Bach joined Microsoft in 1988 and is credited with overseeing the launch of the XBox and from all comments from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, a very close friend of Ballmers and valued individual.


  • J Allard, former Senior Vice President of the Entertainment and Devices division retired from Microsoft to pursue more personal interests and has stated he does not plan to join any other company that competes with Microsoft. He will also remain a personal adviser to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

Allard joined Microsoft in 1991 and has been credited with convincing Microsoft to ship TCP/IP in Windows 95 and very well known as the Father of XBox and credited with development of Zune.


  • Rajan Anandan, former Director of its sales and marketing group (SMSG) in India left Microsoft to pursue other personal interests and has now been hired by Google as Google India Vice President.

Anandan joined Microsoft in 2008. Anandan lead Microsoft India as its managing director for two years responsible for OEM and services business.


  • Ray Ozzie, Microsoft’s Chief Software Architect. Last report says he is still will Microsoft during a transposition period.

Ozzie joined Microsoft in 2005 when the software giant acquired his company Groove Networks. In 2006, when Gates announced his upcoming retirement from day-to-day activities at Microsoft, Ozzie took over Bill Gates’ position as Chief Software Architect and Ballmer assumed Gates’ other role as CEO.

With the growing trend of high profile employees leaving Microsoft, should Microsoft be alarmed? Or is Microsoft moving in different directions to keep up with the times? Either way we look at it, there is still a growing count of high profile employees leaving Microsoft in an alarmingly fast rate!

What do you think is happening!?

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Lee Whittington is a Tech Reporter and a Developer with the TWC Team. He has been writing for TWCN for several years and has also developed several freeware apps for The Windows Club, most of which have been very popular worldwide.