Ellen Pao cover

photo credits: Wikimedia Commons

Ellen Pao

American businesswoman and writer

1970   -  

country of citizenship: United States of America
educated at: Princeton University, Harvard Law School, Harvard Business School
occupation: lawyer, businessperson, writer, chief executive officer, director

Ellen Kangru Pao (born 1970) is an American investor and activist who co-founded the diversity consulting non-profit organization Project Include. She was previously a partner at Kapor Capital and the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at the Kapor Center for Social Impact before leaving in 2018 to focus on her role as Project Include's CEO. Other positions she has held include interim CEO of social media technology company Reddit, investment partner at Kleiner Perkins, board director at Flipboard, and corporate attorney at Cravath, Swaine & Moore.Since becoming known, in 2012, for filing an unsuccessful gender discrimination suit against former employer Kleiner Perkins, Pao has expressed vocal criticism of the hiring and promotion practices in Silicon Valley. In 2015, unpopular decisions made during Pao's tenure at Reddit generated a wave of controversy that culminated in her stepping down. The backlash she received sparked debates both on the treatment of women in technology and the need for transparency in a company that relies on volunteers.
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