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Altman Returns to OpenAI, Microsoft Joins Board

Altman Returns to OpenAI, Microsoft Joins Board

Sarah Hardacre
After a tumultuous few days, Sam Altman returned to OpenAI as CEO and the Board of Directors added Microsoft as a non-voting observer.

Altman was reinstated days after his firing by the previous Board of Directors. He received wide support from OpenAI leadership and employees following his removal. Following Altman’s dismissal, Microsoft, who has invested heavily in OpenAI, offered Altman and other senior leaders employment in its new AI research team.

Altman confirmed his return as CEO in a blog post, as well as the restoration of his leadership team to their former roles. After temporarily holding the role of CEO following Altman’s firing, Mira Murati returned as CTO. Greg Brockman was also reinstated as President, with Altman saying, “Greg and I are partners in running this company. We have never quite figured out how to communicate that on the org chart, but we will.”

The Board of Directors has also taken a new shape. Former co-CEO of Salesforce, Bret Taylor, joined as the new Chair alongside former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers and Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo. D’Angelo is the only remaining board member from the team that ousted Altman. Altman also announced that Microsoft, which holds a 49% stake in the company, will join the Board as a non-voting observer.

Going forward, the Board will actively seek new Board members from diverse technology, policy, and safety fields. It will also convene an independent body to review the recent events and “enhance the governance structure of OpenAI” to reassure all stakeholders, from users to employees and partners, that OpenAI will continue to thrive.

Altman marked his return with optimism. “I have never been more excited about the future. I am extremely grateful for everyone’s hard work in an unclear and unprecedented situation, and I believe our resilience and spirit set us apart in the industry.”

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