You just have to go to these places and ask questions.When Bill and I went to Africa [in 2006], Melinda was with us, and she asked better questions than we did on some of these HIV/AIDS prevention efforts.The Clinton Global Initiative encourages its deep-pocketed members to take action, requiring them to make commitments once they figure out what projects to undertake.Each commitment must be original, specific, and measurable.They have traveled together to neglected corners of the world—fodder for a buddy movie that Hollywood has so far missed."I knew him before he was president, I knew him when he was president, and I know him now that he's not president," Gates remarks with a smile while waiting for his friend to arrive.After warmly greeting each other, the two Bills jumped into conversation, edited here for space and clarity.Both of you are embarked on your next careers, helping to change the world. Clinton: When I left the White House, I decided to focus on things that I had cared about when I was there, where I could still make a difference.
Gates and Clinton have long bonded over their shared mission.The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has by some estimates saved some 6 million lives and delivered a higher-quality existence to many, many more.The foundations are at the forefront of a new era in philanthropy, in which decisions—often referred to as investments—are made with the strategic precision demanded of business and government, then painstakingly tracked to gauge their success.And then we have a huge effort against childhood obesity in America.We got the soft drink and juice companies to agree to reduce by 90 percent the total calories in the drinks they ship to schools.
It's been exciting that the kind of work I've done at Microsoft—backing scientists and seeing how work can actually get delivered—is pretty similar. How does a famous pair like you escape the celebrity bubble to connect with the people you want to help?