Indian-American Leadership at Big Tech Expands

Mahanth S. Joishy is Editor


If you ever saunter into a cafeteria during lunchtime at Google, Microsoft, or Twitter headquarters you will see a sea of Indian employees and likely also smell chef-curated free Indian food in the air. This is no coincidence. Indians, Indian-Americans, and a host of other immigrant communities have formed the backbone of these global tech giants from the very beginning and made them essential to the working and personal lives of billions of people in a very short period of time. Those of us who are old enough remember a world where these companies didn’t even exist. Now they aren’t just American companies, they are true multinational conglomerates with massive offices in India itself in a true comment about globalization.

With the household name Jack Dorsey announcing last week that he will step down as Twitter CEO shortly, to be replaced by current CTO Parag Agrawal, we will for the first time witness Indian-Americans helming all three companies for the first time. Parag joins Satya Nadella at Microsoft, and Sundar Pichai at Google/Alphabet in the Chief Executive Officer suite. We applaud that these leaders have gotten to the heights they have reached, not because they are Indian-Americans, but because they were hand-picked due to their qualifications in the industry, using a truly meritocratic system.

Indians around the world, who have spent centuries lamenting the domination upon them by the colonial yoke of the Western hemisphere’s military-industrial complex are rightly feeling pride in the happenings of Silicon Valley. Especially at a time when the news has been so bad on so many fronts in the last few years for all people around the world.

The challenges are many for all three, including questions about freedom of speech and de-platforming, privacy concerns, ethics, government regulation, and a general public sense of evil-for-profit pervading the hallways and servers of big tech companies. Parag is inheriting a ton of problems and headaches at Twitter.

But for today, congratulations are in order and for the sake of us all, let’s hope these companies continue trying to become better versions of themselves in our collective future they are certain to play a role in.

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