Leaving Microsoft to Change the World
A review of

Leaving Microsoft to Change the World

An Entrepreneur’s Odyssey to Educate the World’s Children

John WoodHarperBusiness • 2007

Someday Come Back with Books

by David Meyer

Microsoft changed the world. Former Microsoft executive John Wood made it a better place to live: He gave up corporate life to deliver books and build schools for children in the Himalayas.

In this remarkable memoir, John Wood, former director of business development for Greater China for Microsoft, details how he founded Room to Read (www.roomtoread.org) to promote literacy first in Nepal, and then in India, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Africa.

When he traveled to Nepal in 1999, Woods hadn’t had a vacation in seven years. Discovering that a village school had only a handful of books led the author to an epiphany. Wood details how he set out to “build the Microsoft of nonprofits,” to educate girls and bring libraries to the developing world. He tracks founding collaborative communities in Nepal, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and India. With candor, tenacity and business savvy, Wood tapped his network and inspired donors to create a successful, global nonprofit.


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