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Debra and Mark Leslie

When I saw the new Museum exhibition, Revolution, I immediately thought that the Museum had the opportunity to do for software what it has done with so many other areas of computing.

I also thought that a focus on software would help the general public understand that the great breakthroughs of the most recent twenty years have largely been software-driven. Because the Museum was already planning to make software an important part of its future strategy, we were able to help something strategic happen even faster than it might have.

Debra and I are happy to support the work of the Museum, and to see it be front and center as a destination for history and understanding in Silicon Valley.
—Mark Leslie


Mark and Debra Leslie of Portola Valley, California, are long-standing supporters of the Computer History Museum. In 2011, the Leslies pledged $1 million to support a new initiative in software history. The centerpiece of the initiative will be a physical and digital exhibition of software “gamechangers.” The working title of the project, scheduled to debut in 2013, is Make Software, Change the World.

Mark is retired after a 35-year career as a successful entrepreneur in Silicon Valley. He was most notably founding chairman and ceo of Veritas Software, which during his tenure grew from 12 employees in 1990 to 6,000, and from $95,000 in revenue to $1.5 billion annually. It was acquired in 2005 by Symantec Corporation.

Now a lecturer in management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, Mark teaches courses in entrepreneurship and sales organization. He also serves on the boards of several private companies, a number of Silicon Valley non-profits, and the New York University Board of Overseers. Mark and Debra have established the Leslie Family Foundation and, through the foundation generously support a number of nonprofit institutions that advance their vision of community service and education.