Sun 18 April 2021:
Charles “Chuck” Geschke, co-founder of the iconic Silicon Valley company Adobe Inc. and prominent cheerleader of downtown San Jose, died Friday at age 81.
Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen wrote in an email to the company’s employees.
“As co-founders of Adobe, Chuck and John Warnock developed groundbreaking software that has revolutionized how people create and communicate,” Narayen said. “Their first product was Adobe PostScript, an innovative technology that provided a radical new way to print text and images on paper and sparked the desktop publishing revolution.
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Chuck instilled a relentless drive for innovation in the company, resulting in some of the most transformative software inventions, including the ubiquitous PDF, Acrobat, Illustrator, Premiere Pro and Photoshop.”
His wife said Geschke was also proud of his family.
“He was a famous businessman, the founder of a major company in the US and the world, and of course he was very, very proud of that and it was huge achievement in his life, but it wasn’t his focus — really, his family was,” Nancy “Nan” Geschke, 78, told the Mercury News on Saturday. “He always called himself the luckiest man in the world.”
Geschke received various national recognitions for his contributions to the industry over the years, including the National Medal of Technology and Innovation from President Barack Obama in 2009, an honor he shared with Warnock.
The Geschkes suffered several traumas over the decades, including the death of a fourth child at birth and Chuck Geschke’s dramatic 1992 kidnapping that made national news.
After retiring, Geschke remained on the Adobe board until 2020 and otherwise dedicated himself largely to philanthropy, his wife said. He also previously served on the boards for the San Francisco Symphony and the Commonwealth Club.
In addition to his wife of 56 years, Geschke is survived by three children and seven grandchildren.
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