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Former Microsoft Ad Exec Bradford Joins Yahoo

If executive turnover in the online advertising world were a soap opera, it might be called, "The Young and the Restless." One such case is online services veteran Joanne K. Bradford. She jumped ship from Microsoft in March, and after joining television commercial-maker Spot Runner, she jumped ship again -- this time to search-ad company Yahoo.

Bradford replaces former Senior Vice President of Sales David Karnstedt at Yahoo, who recently left to join a venture capital firm.

Circumstances may have heated up earlier this year when Microsoft initiated some executive juggling in its online unit. Bradford's boss, Steve Berkowitz, who had headed up the online unit, was "pushed aside" in February to a transitional role, according to a New York Times account.

Berkowitz left Microsoft in August, according to the Times article. Meanwhile, Bradford was assigned to report to Satya Nadella, an engineering supervisor who previously managed accounting and business software. Bradford subsequently resigned from Microsoft in March.

Bradford had left Microsoft in the heat of its failed hostile takeover bid for Yahoo. Microsoft wanted all or part of Yahoo to boost its search engine marketing revenues. Microsoft's Live Search engine currently trails in third place behind those of Google and Yahoo.

At Microsoft, Bradford was credited with bolstering a shaky MSN unit with new online advertising revenues. She played a major role in Microsoft's Internet operations network and served as corporate vice president of global sales and marketing.

Bradford's new role at Yahoo is senior vice president of U.S. revenue and market development. She will "oversee sales, market development for advertisers, small business and Yahoo HotJobs," according to a Yahoo released statement. Bradford will report to Hillary Schneider, executive vice president of Yahoo's U.S. operations.

Bradford has joined Yahoo when the company's shares are trading at a 52-week low. Moreover, the U.S. Department of Justice is reportedly scrutinizing a search advertising agreement between Yahoo and Google with the possibility of busting up the deal.

About the Author

Herb Torrens is an award-winning freelance writer based in Southern California. He managed the MCSP program for a leading computer telephony integrator for more than five years and has worked with numerous solution providers including HP/Compaq, Nortel, and Microsoft in all forms of media.