Cook, 50, joined Apple in March 1998. According to Apple, before Cook joined the company, he was vice president of corporate materials for Compaq and was “responsible for procuring and managing all of compacts product inventory.” Before that, he was COO of Intelligent Electronics’ reseller division.
This won’t be the first time he’s run the company, which he did for two months in 2004 when Steve Jobs had surgery for pancreatic cancer and again in 2009 when Jobs had a liver transplant.
The calm, quiet executive with a Southern accent is said to never raise his voice, starts sending emails to his subordinates at 4:30 a.m., and according to Fortune, can be a tough leader:
“I’ve seen him shred people,” says a former executive who now works for another consumer electronics company and refused to be quoted by name. “He asks you the questions he knows you can’t answer, and he keeps going and going. It isn’t funny, and it’s not fun.”
Since January of this year, Cook has been responsible for day-to-day operations of Apple, with Steve Jobs still said to be holding final decision-making authority — until today.
Here’s a video of Cook from 2010, delivering the commencement address at his alma mater, Auburn: