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Tim Cook Fast Facts

CNN Editorial Research

Here’s a look at the life of Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook.


Birth date: November 1, 1960

Birth place: Robertsdale, Alabama

Birth name: Timothy Donald Cook

Father: Donald Cook, shipyard worker

Mother: Geraldine Cook

Education: Auburn University, B.S., 1982; Duke University, M.B.A., 1988

Other Facts

Served on the Board of Directors of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights.


1982 – Joins IBM.

1994 – Leaves IBM to join Intelligent Electronics as their chief operating officer of the Reseller Division.

1997 Leaves Intelligent Electronics to join Compaq as vice president of Corporate Materials.

March 1998 – Leaves Compaq after only six months to join Apple when Steve Jobs offers him a position.

1998-2002 – Senior vice president of worldwide operations at Apple.

2000-2002 – Senior vice president of worldwide operations, sales, service and support at Apple.

2002-2005 – Executive vice president, worldwide sales and operations at Apple.

2004 Becomes the head of the Macintosh hardware engineering team.

October 14, 2005 – Jobs names Cook chief operating officer of Apple.

November 2005 Becomes a member of Nike’s board of directors.

2009 Is named interim CEO of Apple during Jobs’ leave of absence to receive a liver transplant.

January 2011 – Is named interim CEO while Jobs takes an extended medical leave.

August 2011 Is named CEO after Jobs resigns.

February 11, 2013 – Attends the State of the Union address as a guest of First Lady Michelle Obama.

December 10, 2013 – Cook receives a lifetime achievement award from Auburn University. During his acceptance speech, he speaks out on the issue of gay rights and says, “Now is the time to write these basic principles of human dignity into the book of law.”

October 30, 2014 – Acknowledges he is gay in an op-ed published by Bloomberg Businessweek.

February 16, 2016 – In a public letter, Cook warns that complying with a judge’s order to help the FBI break into the iPhone of deceased San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook would entail building “a backdoor to the iPhone” — “something we consider too dangerous to create.” The letter calls for a public discussion on the order, saying Apple is “challenging the FBI’s demands with the deepest respect for American democracy and a love of our country.”

June 19, 2017 – Cook and other tech chief executives meet with President Donald Trump’s American Technology Council, which was created by executive order in May.

February 13, 2019 – It is announced that Cook has joined Trump’s American Workforce Policy Advisory Board, which was created by executive order.

July 29, 2020 – Cook, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, CEO of Google‘s parent company Sundar Pichai and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg all testify before a House subcommittee on anti-trust to address concerns that their businesses may be harming competition.

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