Peter Chernin ruled himself out, ex Vodafone (NYSE: VOD) chief Arun Sarin said no, and former AOL (NYSE: TWX) CEO Jon Miller reportedly also said he wasn’t interested. Now, WSJ.com reports that Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) is close to naming its new CEO, and could do so as soon as next week. Carol Bartz, ex CEO of design software maker Autodesk, whose name was first raised by AllThingsD, is “on the list,” according to the unidentified sources cited in the story. Yahoo wants to name the eventual winner, whomever he or she may be, before announcing Q4 earnings on January 27, the story says, though the board hasn’t yet offered the job to anyone and drawing up a contract could take weeks.
Bartz, whose former business (she still chairs the board) is best known for its stuffy but useful architecture and engineering design package, would represent a shift for a Yahoo once run by Hollywood bigwig Terry Semel. But she may bring an understanding of technology that could help reboot Yahoo on the innovation front– Bartz was a Sun Microsystems VP, and sits on the boards of Intel (NSDQ: INTC), Cisco (NSDQ: CSCO) and Sunnyvale-based backup service NetApp. She was also appointed to President Bush’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and is a computer science grad. As the WSJ.com points out, former Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang and president Susan Decker also sit around the board tables of Cisco and Intel, respectively, with Bartz.