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Dave Hitz

Dave HItz

Dave Hitz

Chairman, Hitz Foundation
Founder Emeritus, NetApp

Focus areas for the Hitz Foundation include Mayan archeology, 3D scanning of ancient sites and museum collections, and global sustainability. Hitz co-founded Play On Shakespeare, which has translated all of Shakespeare's plays into present-day, performable English; it is now sponsoring theatrical productions as well as podcasts of these translations. Play On has been called the single largest literary translation project since the King James Bible—and also “a waste of money and talent.” As chairman of Deep Springs College, Hitz helped guide the transition to coeducation after 100 years of all-male enrollment.

In 1992, Hitz co-founded NetApp, a Silicon Valley data management company. His roles included programmer, evangelist, architect, Executive VP of Engineering, cheerleader, strategist, and coach. Hitz is an inventor on 29 patents. He wrote a book, How to Castrate a Bull: Unexpected Lessons on Risk, Growth, and Success in Business, about NetApp's journey from startup to Fortune 500. Hitz is currently Founder Emeritus. Prior to NetApp, he worked for MIPS and Auspex.

Hitz dropped out of high school. He attended George Washington University, Swarthmore College, Deep Springs College, and—finally—Princeton University where he received a BSE in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering. At Deep Springs College, Dave worked as a cowboy and learned to herd, brand, and castrate cattle.