Patty Stonesifer, the chief executive officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, announced last week that she will step down from her role next January.
Ms. Stonesifer, 51, has led the Seattle-based philanthropy, the largest in the world, since its inception in 1997. She is a former executive at Microsoft Corp., the company co-founded by Bill Gates.
To date, the foundation has awarded more than $16 billion in grants, including to improve K-12 schools. It has an endowment of $38.7 billion and 500 employees.
A version of this article appeared in the February 13, 2008 edition of Education Week