Notable alumni of UC Berkeley | 11 famous MBAs

UC Berkeley Haas School of Business has a network of over 40,000 alumni in over 80 countries around the world.

Haas works hard to connect its MBA students with its alumni through virtual platforms and alumni chapters that take place in major cities around the world. MBA graduates have created affinity groups for students, ranging from real estate to consulting.

With such a strong network, students forge links with professionals from very diverse backgrounds and industries. The alumni network plays a key role in the success of graduates: those who complete their MBA then went on to work for companies like Google, Goldman Sachs and Amazon.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of 11 notable UC Berkeley alumni of the Haas MBA program.

1. Robert Lutz

© Ed Schipul, used under this Licence.

1962 MBA class

Automotive frame

While studying at Haas, Robert served as a jet attack aviator for the US Marine Corps. When off duty, he supported two of his daughters by selling vacuums in Walnut Creek, California.

After graduating, Robert left the navies and joined BMW as vice president of sales. During this time he contributed to the development of the BMW 3 Series and the Motorsport division.

Robert went on to become the leader of the Big Three automakers, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler Corporation and General Motors. While working as vice president of General Motors, he designed the plan for the Chevy Volt, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.

In 2011, he received the Leading Through Innovation award from the Haas School.

2. NO (Bill) Jasper

1971 MBA class

Former President and CEO of Dolby Laboratories

Bill initially joined Dolby Laboratories as vice president of finance and administration. He rose through the ranks and eventually became president.

He was responsible for the company’s transition from a leading analog audio organization to a digital entertainment company.

3. Paul Otellini


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MBA class of 1974

Former President and CEO of Intel

Paul joined Intel as executive vice president and general manager of the company’s Architecture group. He then served as Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing.

Paul became CEO of Intel in 2005, where he led the transition from Apple to Intel, where Apple changed its CPU from PowerPC to Intel x86.

In 2006, Paul was named Haas Business Leader of the Year.

4. Barbara Desoer

MBA class of 1977

Former CEO and COO of Citibank

Prior to becoming CEO of Citibank, Barbara was President of Home Loans at Bank of America.

In 2008, she was named one of the 50 Most Influential Women in Business by The Wall Street Journal. A year later, Forbes recognized her as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in the World.

5. Arun Sarin


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1978 MBA class

Former CEO of Vodafone

Arun was CEO of Vodafone for 5 years. It increased the number of Vodafone subscribers from 100 million to 300 million.

In 2019, he received the honorary title of Chevalier for his work in communication.

6. Joe Jiménez

1984 MBA class

Former CEO of Novartis

Prior to joining the Swiss pharmaceutical giant, Joe held key positions within Astra-Zeneca and the Blackstone Group. He then became President and CEO of HJ Heinz Company and Heinz in Europe. He joined Novartis as Division Head of Consumer Health and later became CEO.

Today, Joe is a member of the Board of Directors of Colgate-Palmolive.

7. Cathie Lesjak

MBA class of 1986

Former HP CFO

Named 32nd Most Powerful Woman in the World by Forbes, Cathie held a number of key positions at HP before taking on the role of CFO. These roles included the COO and the Controller and Credit Manager for business customers.

8. Scott Galloway

MBA class of 1992

Best-selling author, speaker and clinical professor of marketing at NYU Stern

After graduating from Haas, Scott went on to found Prophet, Red Envelope, L2 Inc, Firebrand Partners and Section4. These companies belonged to industries ranging from branding and marketing consulting to digital intelligence.

Scott has also served on the boards of notable brands like Urban Outfitters, The New York Times Company, and Eddie Bauer.

He currently co-hosts a commentary podcast called Pivot, which focuses on business, money, and tech. The podcast was launched by the technology news website Recode and the Vox Media Podcast Network. It is co-organized by Kara Swisher, America’s leading tech journalist.

CNN recently announced that Scott will join its CNN + streaming platform as a host.

9. Shantanu Narayen


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MBA class of 1993

CEO of Adobe Systems

After obtaining his MBA, Narayen joined Measurex Automation Systems, a start-up that created computer control systems. Two years later, he took a leadership role at Apple.

He eventually joined Adobe, where he became CEO in 2007. Narayan was responsible for moving the software from the office to the cloud. As a result of its work, the company was ranked thirteenth on Forbes’ Most Innovative Companies and was featured in Fortune 400 for the first time in its history.

10. Paul Rice

MBA class of 1996

Founder and CEO of Fair Trade USA

Paul founded Fair Trade USA, formerly known as TransFair, two years after completing his MBA. The organization challenges other companies to make their supply chains more sustainable.

Paul’s work has enabled more than one million farmers to compete in the global market and receive fair prices for their products. The company works with more than 800 companies, which carry Fair Trade certification on their products.

11. Yi So-yeon


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MBA class of 2014

South Korean first astronaut

Before studying at Haas, Yi So-yeon was South Korea’s first astronaut. Upon her return, she left the International Space Station to pursue her MBA.

She is now a member of the Association of Spaceflight Professionals.

Read more :

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