Susan Decker

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Susan Decker
Susan Decker.jpg
Susan Decker at Yahoo! all hands meeting, April 2008
Born (1962-11-17)November 17, 1962[citation needed]
Nationality American
Occupation President, Yahoo! Inc.

Susan (Sue) Lynne Decker (born 1962) served as president of Yahoo! Inc in 2007 and 2008, leading the operations of the company during Jerry Yang's reign as CEO.[1]

Early history and personal life[edit]

Decker has a Bachelor of Science in computer science and economics from Tufts University, and a Masters of Business Administration from Harvard Business School. She is also a Chartered Financial Analyst. Prior to joining Yahoo, she worked with Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette for 14 years. Most recently, she served as the global director of equity research, a $300 million operation, where, among other things, she was responsible for building and staffing a non-U.S. research product based on global sector teams. Before she assumed these responsibilities, Decker spent 12 years as an equity research analyst, providing coverage to institutional investors on more than 30 media, publishing, and advertising stocks. In this capacity, she received recognition by Institutional Investor magazine as a top rated analyst for ten consecutive years.[2]

Decker has three children and lives in Marin County.

Yahoo! presidency[edit]

Decker was chief financial officer and executive vice-president of finance and administration of Yahoo from 2000 to 2007.[3] During her tenure as CFO, she oversaw finance, legal, human resources, facilities, and investor relations. In advance of being promoted to president of the company, in 2006 to 2007 she served as executive vice president of the Advertiser and Publisher Group in addition to her CFO responsibilities,[4] where she was known for leading a consortium with the newspaper industry and the launch of a display ad platform.[5]

Decker was in a favorable position for consideration as CEO.[6] However, Yahoo! experienced a difficult period during Jerry Yang's CEO leadership when the company was under siege from a takeover offer from Microsoft. Also the proposed search deal with Google that Decker drove as an alternative to a transaction with Microsoft didn't get through the U.S. Justice Department.[7] This led the company to ask Jerry Yang to resign and the board to go with an outside candidate for the CEO position that wasn't associated with this troubled period.[8] Decker and Yang were unable to assuage shareholder concerns as Yahoo's share price fell in 2007 and 2008 during Google's ascendency. Decker announced her intention to resign from the company on January 13, 2009, following the appointment of Carol Bartz as CEO.[9]

Post-Yahoo! career[edit]

Decker currently serves on the boards of directors of Berkshire Hathaway,[10] Intel Corporation,[11] Costco,[12] and LegalZoom.[13] She served on the board of directors of Pixar Animation Studios from June 2004 to May 2006, until its sale to The Walt Disney Company, and on the board of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research from March 2005 to May 2007. She was also named a Trustee of Save The Children in March 2010.[14]

In the fall of 2009, Decker joined the Harvard Business School as an Entrepreneur In Residence working with students in their own ventures and helping faculty to develop and deliver the entrepreneurship-focused portions of the School’s Immersion Experience Program.[15]

On September 30, 2010, Decker received Harvard Business School's most important honor, the Alumni Achievement Award.[16]


  1. ^ Helft, Miguel (2007-07-01). "Can She Turn Yahoo Into, Well, Google?". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  2. ^ "Crossing Over". Retrieved 2007-10-12. 
  3. ^ "Yahoo's Rising Star". Forbes. 2006-11-16. Retrieved 2006-11-15. 
  4. ^ "Will CFO Decker Take the Reins at Yahoo". Retrieved 2006-12-08. 
  5. ^ "Yahoo Launches Major Upgrade". Retrieved 2008-09-24. 
  6. ^ "Sources: Yahoo's Decker a strong contender for CEO". Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  7. ^ "Sue Decker Makes the Yahoogle Case and (Finally) Gets It Right". Retrieved 2008-09-27. 
  8. ^ "Yang steps aside as Yahoo seeks new CEO". Retrieved 2008-11-17. 
  9. ^ "Sue Decker’s Goodbye Memo to the Yahoo Troops". Retrieved 2009-01-14. 
  10. ^ "BRK Board of Directors". Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  11. ^ "Intel Executive Biography". Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  12. ^ "Costco Investor Relations". Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  13. ^ "LegalZoom Board of Directors". Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  14. ^ "Board of Trustees". Retrieved 2010-03-01. 
  15. ^ Vascellaro, Jessica E. (2009-09-09). "Yahoo Ex-President Returns to Harvard". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2010-06-28. 
  16. ^ "Harvard Business School Presents Alumni Achievement Awards". Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
Business positions
Preceded by
Terry Semel
as Chief Executive Officer
President of Yahoo!
Succeeded by
Carol Bartz
as Chief Executive Officer
Preceded by
Jerry Yang
as Chief Yahoo!
Preceded by
David Filo
as Chief Yahoo!