• unknown (b.)


An American business executive, she is the CEO of JLabs (formerly called Packet Design Management Company), through which she pursues a broad range of advisory activities including sitting on corporate and advisory boards and speaking engagements. She is a technology entrepreneur who co-founded seven companies with Bill Carrico and was the CTO of Cisco Systems from 1998 to 2000. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Walt Disney Company (since 1998) and the FedEx Corporation (since 1989). She has served on the Boards of Rockwell Automation and Sun Microsystems. She also serves on the Advisory Boards of Stanford?s School of Engineering and Bio-X interdisciplinary program, and is a member of the University of California President?s Science and Innovation Advisory Board. She received a Bachelor's degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from UCLA, where her sister, Deborah Estrin, is a professor, and a Master's degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University (1977). While at Stanford, she worked with the research group headed by Vint Cerf, a computer science pioneer often called the "Father of the Internet". Cerf's team developed the TCP/IP specification which forms the underlying technology of the Internet. After Stanford she worked at Zilog Corporation, where she contributed to the design of the Z8 and Z8000 microprocessors and led the team that developed one of the first commercial local area network systems called Z-net. In 1981, she co-founded Bridge Communications ? a network router, bridges, and communications servers company. The company merged with 3Com in 1986. In 1988 she joined the founding team of Network Computing Devices (NCD) as Executive Vice President, later becoming President and CEO in 1993. In 1995, she co-founded Precept Software, Inc., a developer of networking software, and served as President and CEO until its acquisition by Cisco Systems in 1998, when she became its CTO and Senior Vice President of Cisco Systems until 2000. In 2000, she co-founded Packet Design, LLC, a networking technology company that spun out three venture backed start-ups, including Packet Design, Inc. She served as Packet Design, LLC?s CEO until it was dissolved, distributing its assets to investors in late 2007. She has three times been named to Fortune magazine's list of the 50 most powerful women in American business. She was honored in 2002 with induction into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame. She is the author of "Closing the Innovation Gap: Reigniting the Spark of Creativity in a Global Economy" (McGraw-Hill; Hardcover, September 2008), a general interest book that challenges national, academic and business leaders to work together to make USA competitive again.
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  • Noted For:

    Leader of the team that developed one of the first commercial local area network systems, Z-net
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