John W. Thompson
|John W. Thompson|
Thompson speaking in 2009
April 24, 1949 |
Fort Dix, New Jersey
|Alma mater||Bachelor of Business Administration, Florida A&M|
|Occupation||CEO of Virtual Instruments|
John W. Thompson (born April 24, 1949) is a former vice-president at IBM and the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Symantec Corporation. He is presently the CEO of Virtual Instruments. During his tenure as CEO of Symantec, he was the only African American leading a major technology company.
Born in Fort Dix, New Jersey, Thompson attended John F. Kennedy High School in Riviera Beach, Florida (now Suncoast Community High School). He received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Florida A&M in 1971 and a Master's degree in Management (M.B.A.) from the Sloan Fellows program of the MIT Sloan School of Management in 1983.
Before moving on to become Symantec's CEO in 1999, Thompson's 28-year career with IBM Corporation included senior executive positions in sales, marketing and software development, and lastly as general manager of IBM Americas as well as membership in the company’s Worldwide Management Council.
In September 2002, Thompson was appointed to the National Infrastructure Advisory Committee (NIAC) which makes recommendations regarding the security of the critical infrastructure of the United States.
Thompson retired from his CEO post on April 4, 2009, turning the company's reins over to long-time Symantec executive Enrique Salem.
- Seagate Technology
- Florida A&M University Cluster
- Illinois Governor's Human Resource Advisory Council
- Teach for America
In 2010, Thompson was recognized for his commitment to education in Silicon Valley at the Silicon Valley Education Foundation's 2010 Pioneers & Purpose event. He received the Pioneer Business Leader award, which is awarded to individuals who have achieved outstanding accomplishments in business and education.
Commerce secretary post
In January 2009, news sources reported that Barack Obama was considering Thompson to fill the Commerce secretary post in the Obama administration. Thompson was a strong supporter of Barack Obama's campaign during the 2008 election cycle. Ultimately, Senator Judd Gregg was chosen for the post but withdrew his name on Thursday, February 12. Thompson again remained a potential candidate until the successful appointment of Gary Locke.
- Hughes, Alan (September 2004). "The best CEO in Silicon Valley: John Thompson has transformed Symantec into a multibillion-dollar security software juggernaut". Black Enterprise. Retrieved 2009-01-28.
- "John W Thompson, CEO Compensation". Forbes. April 2006. Retrieved 2006-06-07.
- Puzzanghera, Jim (January 2009). "Commerce secretary may hail from Silicon Valley". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2009-01-28.
- "Outgoing Symantec CEO eyed for Commerce post". Denver Post. January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-28.
- "Thompson top choice for commerce secretary: sources". Washington Post. January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-28.[dead link]
- "Nomination of Symantec CEO John W. Thompson as commerce secretary near, sources say". San Jose Mercury News. January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-28.
- "Obama nominates GOP senator for Commerce secretary". USA Today. January 2009. Retrieved 2010-05-07.[dead link]
- John W. Thompson-Chief Executive Officer-Virtual Instruments
- Symantec corporate bio
- CNN profile (2002)
- Speaking at Stanford