Tachi Yamada, head of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s global-health effort, announced Monday that he will retire in June, when the five-year commitment he made upon joining the world’s largest philanthropy ends, the Seattle Times writes.
Dr. Yamada oversaw a rapid expansion of the foundation’s health programs, which accounted for 60 percent of the organization’s $3-billion in grants in 2009.
A former chief of research and development at the pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline, he sharpened the foundation’s focus on vaccines as the most cost-effective weapon against disease in the developing world and reduced spending on speculative research.
Dr. Yamada, 65, said he is exploring an opportunity to do “substantial” work in his native Japan. The foundation has started a search for his successor.