Haute 100 San Francisco Update: John Morgridge

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Our Haute 100 list details the accomplishments of the most influential people in each of our markets—Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. These people continue to make moves, so rather than waiting for the next Haute 100 issue to come out, we thought we’d provide you with regular updates on those Haute 100 members who are making headlines. University of Wisconsin-Madison alumni John Morgridge and his wife Tashia donate millions to their former institution.

John Morgridge

Category: Billionaires

Company: Cisco Systems

Industry: Technology

What Made Him Haute: John Morgridge joined Cisco Systems Inc. in 1988 as president and CEO (today he is chairman emeritus) and grew the company from $5 million in sales to more than $1 billion, and from 34 employees to more than 2,250. During his tenure, Cisco became the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, with more than $25 billion in revenues and some 47,000 employees in 77 countries.

What Makes Him Haute Now: The University of Wisconsin-Madison opened the doors Thursday to its new building, The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery and Morgridge Institute for Research, thanks to the generous donations from John and Tashia Morgridge. Over the years, the duo have donated hundreds of millions to UW-Madison but their latest contribution was able to place a one-of-a-kind research facility on the campus. “This is the first one that has embedded teaching lab in it. The first one that has a town center,” said John Morgridge. The plan, according to the managing director of the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, was to build a facility that would draw people inside so they could get excited about science. “I think this is the place that will do it,” he says, “certainly we’re off to a strong start.”

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