Dr. Charles Geschke

Adobe has announced that the company’s co-founder, Dr. Charles Geschke, passed away Friday, April 16, 2021, at the age of 81.

Geschke co-founded Adobe in 1982 with Dr. John Warnock, a colleague from Xerox. Their first product was Adobe PostScript, a pivotal technology that sparked the desktop publishing revolution. Geschke was chief operating officer of Adobe from December 1986–July 1994 and president from April 1989 until his retirement in April 2000.

He served as chairman of the board with Warnock from September 1997–January 2017 and a member of the board until April 2020, when he transitioned to become emeritus board member.

In recognition of his technical achievements, Geschke was awarded the prestigious National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the Computer Entrepreneur Award from the IEEE Computer Society and the American Electronics Association Medal of Honor.

“I could never have imagined having a better, more likable, or more capable business partner,” said Warnock. “Not having Chuck in our lives will leave a huge hole and those who knew him will all agree.”

“As much as his inventions changed the world, it is his focus on people, purpose and culture that has profoundly impacted each of us at Adobe,” wrote Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen in an email to employees. “As he always said, Chuck wanted to create a company where he would want to work. He believed that good ideas come from everywhere in the company and that it’s not only what we do but how we do it that matters most. He dedicated much of his time and talent to various philanthropies and community organizations throughout his lifetime.”

Geschke is survived by his wife Nancy and three children.