Lipinski, Andreessen good choices for boards
January 19, 2004
BY MICHAEL KRAUSS
Watch for Democratic
U.S. Rep. William Lipinski to join the Illinois Coalition board
today as Coalition Chairman Sam Skinner strives to balance his
board by appointing prominent Democrats. Lipinski, an 11-term
congressman, serves on the House Committee on Transportation and
Infrastructure. Smart move by Skinner.
boards, nice to see Internet browser pioneer and Netscape founder
Marc Andreessen joining Chicago-based Orbitz's board. Andreessen
grew up in Wisconsin and learned his computer craft at the University
of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Clever of Orbitz CEO Jeffrey
Katz to snag Andreessen.
"Marc will lend
a useful eye to our technology direction," Katz says. "Tech
is why we're successful. It's not that Orbitz was first in creating
the technology, it's that we did things better in applying the
Andreessen may find
some old friends when he visits Orbitz's offices at 200 S. Wacker.
"We have people here who were students at the U. of I. in
the early days of Mosaic," Katz says.
Despite his youth,
Andreessen, 32, brings experience to the board. "He's been
through two IPOs, the browser wars with Microsoft, and he worked
with AOL TimeWarner. Marc has a great understanding of what young
companies face," Katz says.
Katz likes Chicago
and plans to keep Orbitz here. When the board hired him in 2000,
Katz had the green light to move the firm. Katz elected to commute
rather than relocate. He didn't want to disrupt the Orbitz technology
team, and he saw an opportunity to recruit top-flight finance
and marketing expertise in Chicago.
"When we hired
our current chief technology officer from eBay, he chose to move
here," Katz says. "The right opportunity can draw people
Katz is one of our
town's emerging technology leaders. He's guided his company through
a successful IPO that raised $316.7 million. He plans to use the
cash "to make acquisitions, tackle new technology, and accelerate
the growth of the business."
Are we in Internet
bubble version 2.0? "Things have changed," he says.
"Our model had to be about profitability, not growth. This
is a profitable, cash-generating business."
students from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management
got $25,000 scholarships from Tom Siebel, CEO of Siebel Systems:
Allison Barmann, Arlindo Eira Filho, Harsha Misra, Brian Myers
and Edwin Van Dusen.
Siebel started the
Scholars program in 2000 to recognize academic achievers and universities
that make great contributions to technology, industry and society.
Northwestern was honored along with traditional tech leaders Carnegie
Mellon, MIT, Harvard and Stanford.
"The program is
an effort to recognize and contribute to the careers of young,
bright, high-energy scholars, who will go on to make great professional
achievements," Siebel says.
Should kids in Chicago's
neighborhoods prepare for jobs in technology? "Twenty years
from now, we will look back and see that we have just scratched
the surface of the opportunity," Siebel says.
co-founder of i.c. stars, runs an all day teach-in today for 200
supporters. The program honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. i.c.
stars provides training and internships for Chicago's minority
Says Kastrul, "The
spirit of Dr. King speaks to our mission. Our goal is to produce
1,000 community leaders and change agents who will use technology
to make a difference."
entrepreneur Robert Blackwell Jr. offers guidance. Blackwell,
who spent 25 years at IBM and runs his own successful consulting
firm, says, "What everyone wants is a well-educated person.
The Accentures and IBMs are looking for well-educated people.
They will train you in the computer business.
"You've got to
read, write and count. Master the fundamental skills that will
make you an educated person. Then you can do computers, medicine
or law. The key is a first-rate education."
Amen to that, Bob,
on this day of remembrance for Dr. King.
Krauss is a Chicago based tech-writer and consultant, and senior
vice-president for Hostway Corp., Chicago.