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Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates appears to have had a history of inappropriate behavior towards female employees, The Wall Street Journal reports.
In an exclusive reportThe newspaper’s Emily Glazer wrote that a 2019 report by an engineer on an affair Gates had with an employee preceded the removal of the co-founder from the board in 2020.
Gates and his wife Melinda, whom he met while she was a program manager at Microsoft, announcement on May 3, they obtained a divorce which was finalized in August.
The WSJ Microsoft executives discovered emails between Gates and a mod-level employee in 2008, while still employed by the software giant, according to a report. He was flirtatious and made proposals to the employee.
Then-General Counsel Brad Smith and Director of Human Resources Lisa Brummel told him that such behavior had to be stopped and he agreed to stop behaving with such a manager.
The report quotes Microsoft spokesman Frank Shaw as saying the company became aware of the flirtation and proposal emails – which were sent in 2007 – just before Gates resigned his job as a worker at full time in 2008.
“Although they were flirting, they weren’t overtly sexual, but were deemed inappropriate,” Shaw said.
Gates spokeswoman Bridgitt Arnold said in a statement: “These claims are false rumors, recycled from sources who have no direct knowledge and in some cases have significant conflicts of interest.”
A letter from an engineer, sent in 2019, alleging that a previous sexual relationship with Gates was in progress investigation by a law firm when the Microsoft co-founder left the board in 2020.
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