Microsoft’s India-born CEO Satya Nadella was doused with a bucket of ice water on his head as part of a challenge he took to raise awareness about a neurodegenerative disease and in turn challenged Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Google co-founder Larry Page to do the same.
Nadella was challenged by former pro-football player Steve Gleason on Twitter to take the Ice Bucket Challenge to raise awareness about Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).
46-year-old Nadella accepted the challenge and willingly allowed a group of employees to dump the bucket of ice water on his head yesterday.
“The thing I’m really excited about is what Steve and the team have done to raise awareness for ALS,” Nadella said in a video posted on Microsoft’s website showing him standing with the group of employees who later poured the ice water on him.
“This is a great opportunity for all of us to contribute to not only raising awareness but to the research that can find cures” for the disease.
Nadella exclaimed “wow, that is cold” after being thoroughly soaked and then extended the challenge to Bezos and Page.
“Now, let me take this opportunity to challenge Jeff Bezos and Larry Page to take their own ice bucket challenge.
“And let me tell you again from personal experience, it’s better to have your head in the clouds than under a bucket of ice,” Nadella said as he was cheered on by his employees.
Gleason has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and his foundation aims to raise awareness about ALS, as well as to give others living with it the “leading edge technology, equipment and services” they need.
According to the ALS Association, an American dies of ALS every 90 minutes.
ALS strikes people between the ages of 40 and 70 and as many as 30,000 Americans have the disease at any given time.
It is commonly called the Lou Gehrig’s disease, named after the legendary American baseball player who succumbed to the disease.
The ALS ice bucket challenge has gone viral with people posting videos online of dumping a bucket of ice water over their heads.
Once soaked with cold water, they extend the challenge to others and ask them to either do the same or make a donation to an organisation dedicated to fighting ALS.
ALS Association said the challenge has “literally soaked” the nation with everyone from 86-year old widow of Senator Robert Kennedy, Ethel Kennedy to singer Justin Timberlake pouring a bucket of ice water over their heads and challenging others to do the same.