Stephen Toulouse (better known by his nickname "StepTo"), Xbox Live's director of policy and enforcement, has resigned from his position at Microsoft after 18 years with the company. He announced his departure from the company on his personal blog. His last day at Microsoft will be February 15. Although he says that his reasons for leaving are personal he also emphasizes that the exit from Microsoft is amicable.
"So over the past several weeks I’ve made the decision to resign and have been working with my management for an orderly transition," wrote StepTo on his blog. "My last day will be February 15th."
"On the 16th, I’m going to head down to Dallas to visit my family," He continued. "Then I’m off to JocoCruiseCrazy! I have no other plans beyond that. I’m a free agent! One with 18 years of experience in technology, public and written communications, and 5 years spent deep in the entertainment business. If you have something you think I’d be good at, by all means feel free to contact me at Stepto at stepto.com. Or you can buy my book or the audio version of my book via the links to the left (shameless plug)."
And here is a slice of what he wrote to fellow employees at Microsoft:
"On a warm Dallas day April 11th, 1994, I grabbed my keys and wallet and headed for the front door of my apartment. I stopped short when I realized I was going to need my building access badge that I had just been given that previous Friday. I walked into my bedroom and grabbed the badge, making a mental note to remember to keep it with my wallet at night so I wouldn’t forget it in the morning. It was my first full day at Microsoft. I was 21.
Since that day (very nearly without exception) I’ve carried a Microsoft badge with me basically where ever I went. That April day I was a contractor with Microsoft, A-Stepto. The following January I was hired as a Microsoft FTE and issued a new email name, SToulouse. Because everyone had already started calling me Stepto, my manager had them change it to Stepto. It stuck.
I wrote in my book about some of the amazing things I’ve been a part of at this company. Shipping Windows 95. Traveling the world in the training organization teaching support engineers about upcoming technologies. Being a security PM and spokesperson for the entire company on security issues. Getting to play a part in the success of Xbox, Xbox LIVE, and Kinect. I can’t possibly conceive of the good fortune, challenges, and rewards I’ve gotten from almost 18 years at Microsoft happening to me anywhere else."
Who will replace Toulouse and where he will go following his exit from Microsoft is unknown. We'll keep you posted.