Former Cisco CEO John Morgridge to Give 2012 GSB Graduation Address

As head of Cisco Systems, Morgridge established a culture of innovation that reflects the Stanford GSB mission to inspire transformational business leaders.

May 03, 2012

Former Cisco CEO and philanthropist John P. Morgridge will address graduates of Stanford GSB during its graduation ceremony on Saturday, June 16, 2012. A graduate of the business school himself, he will be the third alumni speaker to address students at the annual ceremony.

The alumni speaker program was inaugurated in 2010 as a means to inspire graduates in their future careers. “Throughout his career, John has demonstrated an extraordinary ability to combine his entrepreneurial acumen with a broad commitment to improve the health and well-being of people around the world,” said Garth Saloner, Philip H. Knight Professor and Dean of Stanford GSB. “He is a role model who proves that, armed with the right tools, our graduates can also change lives, change organizations, and change the world.”

Morgridge led Cisco Systems as the company’s second chief executive officer and chairman of its board, helping establish a culture of innovation, empowerment, and giving back. He joined Cisco as CEO in 1988 and grew the company from $5 million to more than $1 billion in sales, and from 34 to more than 2,250 employees. In 1990 he took Cisco public, was appointed chairman in 1995, and became chairman emeritus in 2006.

As chairman emeritus, he continues to champion a range of education and corporate citizenship initiatives and is a guiding force behind the company’s long-term support of basic human needs, responsible citizenship, and access to education. Prior to Cisco, Morgridge was president and chief operating officer of GRiD Systems and held senior positions with Stratus Computer and Honeywell Information Systems.

Today, he teaches management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and serves on its Advisory Council. In 1996, he received Stanford’s Arbuckle Award for excellence in management leadership. He also speaks frequently about philanthropy, strategic management and principled leadership, entrepreneurship, and how education and technology can fuel economic and societal development throughout the world.

Morgridge actively supports a range of education, conservation, and human services initiatives. He also serves on the boards of Business Executives for National Security, CARE, the Cisco Foundation, Digital Promise, the Morgridge Institute for Research, Stanford Hospitals and Clinics, TOSA Foundation, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), and the Fund for Wisconsin Scholars; as co-chair of the Asia-Pacific Council of The Nature Conservancy; and as co-director of the Stanford Leadership Academy.

By Katie Pandes

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