Who Is Driving Amazon’s Management Team? (AMZN)


In 1994, Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos launched one of the biggest success stories in modern business history. What began strictly as an online bookseller, slowly evolved into a purveyor of hundreds of different product lines, helping Amazon grow into a $1.5 trillion behemoth online shopping site, as of Jan. 14, 2021. Although he’s widely lauded as a visionary in the e-commerce space, Bezos owes much of his success to the management team that helped develop Amazon’s many silos, ensuring that firm-wide operations ran smoothly.

Key Takeaways

  • Since launching Amazon.com in 1994, founder Jeff Bezos has grown the company into a behemoth corporation, with an estimated value of $1.5 trillion, as of Jan. 14, 2021.
  • Bezos owes much of his success to his management team and his senior personnel staff.
  • With an estimated net worth of $185 billion, as of Jan. 14, 2021, Bezos is considered one of the world’s richest people.

Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos currently serves as Amazon’s president, chief executive officer (CEO), and chairman of the board of directors. Before Amazon, Bezos was a well-known Wall Street figure, specializing in developing technically sophisticated analysis programs for hedge funds.

At Bankers Trust Company, he oversaw the development of computer software responsible for managing more than $250 billion of the firm’s assets under management (AUM). In 1999, TIME Magazine named Bezos “Person of the Year.”

Bezos also founded Blue Origin, an aerospace company dedicated to lowering the costs and increasing the safety of spaceflight. Bezos earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science and electrical engineering at Princeton University. Ranked as one of the richest people in the world, Bezos boasts an estimated net worth of $185 billion, as of Jan. 14, 2021.

Brian Olsavsky

Brian Olsavsky was named Amazon’s senior vice president and chief financial officer (CFO) in 2015. As CFO, he manages all of the company’s financial operations, including internal financial analysis, investor relations, and internal audits.

Olsavsky formerly served as the company’s vice president of finance and as the CFO of Amazon’s Global Consumer Business, where he was responsible for the financial management of the company’s websites, merchant services, and fulfillment.

Before joining Amazon in 2002, Olsavsky worked in a number of management positions at BF Goodrich and at Union Carbide. Olsavsky received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Penn State and an MBA in Finance from Carnegie Mellon University.

Jeffrey M. Blackburn

Jeffrey Blackburn has been Amazon’s senior vice president of business development since April 2006. He previously served as vice president of business development from June 2004 to April 2006, before which time he served as vice president of European customer service, from July 2003 to June 2004. 

Before joining Amazon.com in 1998, Blackburn was an assistant vice president at Deutsche Morgan Grenfell. Blackburn holds a BA from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.

Andrew R. Jassy

Andy Jassy is CEO of Amazon Web Services, which he has overseen since the group’s inception. In this capacity, Jassy has delivered various cloud infrastructure and application services, currently used by startups, enterprises, and government entities worldwide.

Prior to founding this group, Jassy occupied various leadership roles within the company, which he joined in 1997. Jassy earned an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Amazon.com was nearly named “Cadabra” as in the word “Abracadabra,” but after Jeff Bezos’ lawyer misheard the word as “cadaver,” the name was eliminated from contention.

David Zopolsky

David Zopolsky serves as senior vice president of general counsel and secretary of Amazon.com. He joined the company in 1999 as associate general counsel in charge of litigation and regulatory matters. In addition to overseeing all of the company’s legal affairs, Zopolsky is the chief regulatory compliance officer, in charge of managing the legal aspects of Amazon’s corporate policy issues.

Before joining Amazon, Zopolsky was an assistant district attorney in the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office in New York. He also practiced law at Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, and he was formerly a partner at the law offices of Dorsey & Whitney and Bogle & Gates. Zopolsky holds a BA from Columbia University and a JD from the University of California, Berkeley.

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