Harvard Business School Association
2019 Business Leader of the Year
-Keith Krach-

Harvard Business School Association of Northern California has named Keith Krach its 2019 Business Leader of the Year in recognition of his transformational leadership and game-changing impact in business, technology, education, and social sectors, as well as his extensive philanthropic endeavors. The honor will be celebrated at next year’s 50th Anniversary of the HBSANC’s annual gala.

“Throughout his career, Keith has brought powerful transformational leadership to many sectors—factory automation, engineering, commerce, education, philanthropy and even the way people sign. His focus on innovation and productivity combined with his approach of perpetually challenging the status quo and empowering people to accomplish more than they had ever imagined possible has resulted in a profound impact on GDP per capita, international trade and the sustainability of our planet.”

— Salman Khan, Founder and CEO of Khan Academy
and 2017 Business Leader of the Year

If you are interested in joining in on the celebration and supporting the HBSANC’s award-winning Community Partners program (servicing Bay Area nonprofits) and their fast-growing StartUp Partners program (servicing the Bay Area’s Entrepreneurial environment, including nonprofit startups), you can sponsor a table or purchase individual tickets.

Retired Army Gen. Stanley Mcchrystal - Testimonial for Keith Krach

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Under Secretary of State nominee Keith Krach–Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing

Mitch Daniels - Testimonial for Keith Krach
Keith Krach Eight Transformations
Salman Khan Founder and CEO of Khan Academy - Testimonial for Keith Krach

Krach is recognized as an early pioneer in the robotics industry. As a General Motors VP in the early 80s, he initiated and led the robotics joint venture between GM and Fanuc which gave rise to as the largest industrial robotics company in the world. It quickly rose to be the dominant player by leveraging GM’s sophisticated robot technology and huge captive market combined with Fanuc’s leadership position in NC controllers and its low cost, automated factories.

Factory Automation

In the early 90s, Krach and his founding team at Rasna created the category of Mechanical Design Synthesis by developing an easy to use methodology for analyzing mechanical designs. It enabled design engineers to automatically optimize products instead of having to rely on PhD specialists. Rasna was ranked #3 on the Inc. 5000 fastest growing companies, and was later acquired by Parametric Technologies and remains today strategic for engineers globally.

Bruce Harreld - Testimonial for Keith Krach

In 1996, Krach co-founded Ariba serving as Chairman/CEO. Krach took it public in 2000, ultimately achieving a market capitalization of $40 billion and building one of the fastest-growing software companies in history. In honor of his accomplishment of creating the category of B2B eCommerce, EY named Krach the 2000 National Entrepreneur of the Year. Today, $1.7 trillion/year of commerce is transacted on the Ariba network, which is more than Amazon and Alibaba combined.

As DocuSign’s current chairman and CEO until 2017, Krach created the category of Digital Transaction management and built the DocuSign Global Trust Network, with more than 320,000 companies and 300 million users in 188 countries, which “Empowers anyone to transact anything, anytime, anywhere, on any device– securely.” DocuSign became the verb across real estate, financial services, insurance and other industries and established the benchmark for trust in the industry by creating the Global xDTM Standard. In 2016 the company was named #3 on Forbes Best Cloud Companies and Krach was honored as E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year.

Testimonial About Keith Krach

Krach is credited with initiating and guiding a key paradigm shift in higher education. As Chairman of Purdue and in partnership with past President Cordova (Director of NSF) and President Daniels, generated a new model in STEM education, with unprecedented progress in student affordability, online learning, and retraining the workforce. By leveraging Purdue’s prestige in engineering, large international student body and acquisition of Kaplan University, Purdue University Global was launched as the “World’s First Public University” which has been a catalyst for transforming higher education.

Purdue University - Higher Education

As Sigma Chi’s Grand Consul (President,) responsible for over 244 university chapters and 350,000 lifetime members, Krach drove the transformation of the institution to be exclusively focused on next generation leadership development to serve the world. He drove the creation of the Horizons Leadership Institute in Snowbird, Utah a new long-term strategic plan and at the 150th Anniversary, launched the fraternity’s bold vision to be the preeminent collegiate leadership development organization with the mission to develop values-based leaders committed to the betterment of character, campus and community.

Keith Krach Leadership Service
Hatim Tyabji Chairman of Best Buy - Testimonial for Keith Krach

Krach’s drive to challenge the status quo extends to philanthropy. He established the $30m DocuSign IMPACT Foundation with the mission, not just to give to charities, but to transform them—by using DocuSign technology to streamline operations and maximize resources to support the cause. The Krach Family Foundation serves numerous innovative causes. Krach and wife Metta were honored by City Year with the “2018 Citizen Leadership Award” for their dedication, innovation and impact to communities around the world.

Keiht Krach - Philantropy Transformation

What Krach pioneered in business and higher education, he is now applying to developing the next generation of transformational leaders by building the Virtual Mentor Network. Seeing a shortage of role models, Krach is using technology to tap the insights of great leaders and mentor at scale. The principles of creating networks and categories from his previous endeavors are the formula for building the ultimate pay-it-forward category. This could be Krach’s most transformative and profound venture yet.

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