Yahoo Names Marissa Mayer as New CEO

Mayer becomes the eighth CEO of the 17-year-old company and its fifth in the last year. Mayer was one of the first 20 employees and the first female software developer hired by Google, joining the company in June 1999.

Hopefully, Yahoo gets it right this time.

The struggling search and Web services provider July 16 named longtime Google engineer and executive Marissa Mayer to be its eighth CEO.

Mayer replaces interim CEO Ross Levinsohn, who had subbed eight weeks for Scott Thompson, who served as CEO for four months--January to May 2012--before he was let go for embellishing his resume and then covering up the untruth.

The announcement came immediately after the close of the New York markets and one day before the troubled company is to announce its quarterly results.

Levinsohn, who had been serving as Yahoo's executive vice president of American operations prior to being elevated into the interim CEO post, had been considered by a number of analysts and industry watchers as having the inside track on the permanent job. In fact, the Los Angeles Times and several other media outlets had reported that Yahoo was expected to give him the job on July 12 or 13.

Has Been With Google Since the Beginning

Mayer becomes the second female CEO--Carol Bartz was the first, serving from 2009 to 2011--of the 17-year-old company and its fifth in the last year. Mayer, 37, was one of the first 20 employees and the first female software developer hired by Google, joining the search and Web services provider in June 1999.

Mayer is a 1997 Stanford University graduate and a native of Wausau, Wisc., who worked for SRI International in Menlo Park, Calif., and UBS Research in Zurich briefly prior to joining Google.

Most recently, Mayer was responsible for Local, Maps, and Location Services for Google, the company's suite of local and geographical products, including Google Maps, Google Earth, Zagat, Street View, and local search, for desktop and mobile.

Mayer has led group efforts for many of Google's most strategic products, including the development of its flagship search product and iconic home page for over 10 years.

Mayer Once Hosted the President

Mayer, who resides in Palo Alto, Calif. and once hosted President Barack Obama at her home, has managed some of Google's most successful innovations, launching more than 100 features and products including image, book and product search, toolbar, iGoogle, Google News and Gmail--creating much of the "look and feel" of the Google user experience.

Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Yahoo has some new products up its sleeve that Mayer will supervise, including the new Axis browser. The Axis App runs on iOS devices (no Android at this time) and as a desktop plug-in for HTML5-enabled browsers. It runs as a plug-in to Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Opera and others.

"Marissa is a well-known, visionary leader in user experience and product design and one of Silicon Valley's most exciting strategists in technology development," Yahoo co-founder and former Stanford classmate David Filo said. 

This article was originally published on 07-17-2012
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