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Susan Wojcicki stepping down as YouTube CEO

Longtime Google employee Susan Wojcicki is leaving her role as the CEO of YouTube, with Neal Mohan taking over.

Famously, Larry Page and Sergey Brin started their company in the Wojcicki garage. A year later she joined Google as its 16th employee and first marketing manager. 

She co-created Google Image Search, oversaw advertising (eventually becoming its Senior Vice President), and recommended the original YouTube acquisition. In February of 2014, she became CEO of the video site. 

After nearly 25 years at Google, Wojcicki announced to employees today that she’s stepping back from YouTube to focus on “family, health and personal projects.”

She will remain in an advisory role to “offer counsel and guidance across Google and the portfolio of Alphabet companies.” 

In the short-term, Wojcicki will aid the transition, with Chief Product Officer Neal Mohan taking over as “SVP and new head of YouTube.” Despite the separate CEO designation, YouTube is part of Google, rather than being an Alphabet company.

I’ve spent nearly 15 years of my career working with Neal, first when he came over to Google with the DoubleClick acquisition in 2007 and as his role grew to become SVP of Display and Video Ads. He became YouTube’s Chief Product Officer in 2015. Since then, he has set up a top-notch product and UX team, played pivotal roles in the launch of some of our biggest products, including YouTube TV, YouTube Music and Premium and Shorts, and has led our Trust and Safety team, ensuring that YouTube lives up to its responsibility as a global platform. He has a wonderful sense for our product, our business, our creator and user communities, and our employees. Neal will be a terrific leader for YouTube.

Her announcement also addressed Creators. A separate blog post directed at them points to Shorts, podcasting, streaming, and subscriptions as “what comes next.”

For all the YouTubers I’ve had the privilege to work with, you have done so much to make this platform better over the years. You created the largest creative economy the world has ever seen, enabled entirely new forms of art and storytelling, and supported millions of creators and artists to reach new audiences—all while investing in responsible growth so that this brilliant community of creators, artists, viewers, and advertisers could not only co-exist but thrive together. Thank you!

Wojcicki closed by thanking Page, Brin, and Sundar Pichai:

But for now, I want to thank Sundar for his leadership, support and vision over the years. I also want to thank Larry and Sergey for inviting me on what has truly been the adventure of a lifetime. I always dreamed of working for a company with a mission that could change the world for the better. Thanks to you and your vision, I got the chance to live that dream. It has been an absolute privilege to be a part of it, and I’m excited for what’s next.

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: