Top Black Executive Ousted From Oracle in Management Shuffle

The media focus on Oracle's hiring of Mark Hurd missed the fact that one of the few top African Americans in the high-tech industry was out of a job.

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Better days: Phillips and Elllison. (Getty Images)

Larry Ellison doesn't spend a lot of time in the spotlight these days, but when the chairman of Oracle takes the stage, there's usually a media feeding frenzy. His latest move is hiring Mark Hurd, the ousted CEO of HP, as co-president of the biggest business-software company. Hurd, as you may remember, was dumped after a consultant complained of sexual harassment and HP's board decided they no longer trusted Hurd.

To make room for Hurd, out went Charles Phillips, who spent seven years as a co-president of Oracle. Ellison now says Phillips wanted out months ago but he was asked to stay through the integration of Sun Microsystems, Ellison's last big purchase. Phillips, who is one of the few African Americans in top management in Silicon Valley, made his own headlines several years ago when a scorned former lover purchased a giant billboard in Times Square to proclaim her undying devotion to Phillips. That didn't hurt the brothah's career -- or his street cred -- and he soldiered on, helping Ellison grow Oracle from $10.2 billion in 2004 to $26.8 billion in 2010. Seems that was not enough for Mr. Ellison.

You can read more about Phillips and Oracle at informationweek.com.

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