Head of Google for Startups, U.S.
When Jewel Burks was named the head of Google for Startups, U.S., it shook up the tech industry, and rightfully so. The newly created position is incredibly important to the future success of entrepreneurs, and it’s meaningful that a black woman is the first person to hold the title.
“It’s significant because it demonstrates a commitment to the mission of leveling the playing field for underrepresented startup founders,” Burks explains. “Given that I have experienced what it’s like to be a black woman founder and deeply understand the needs of these founders, it was an intentional decision to select someone with firsthand knowledge of the challenges black founders face and lean on my knowledge to create initiatives that would best serve this community.”
Burks says she’s particularly excited to see black women get recognition for being “incredible innovators.”
“Black women can lead technology companies, and it is time that the world recognized that,” she says.
In her new role, Burks’s primary goal is to help underserved founders move their business forward in three key ways: increased revenue, increased access to capital and increased ability to tell their stories, leveraging Google’s products, people and brand. She says it’s all about propping up the next wave of innovators.
“My most significant success is to be in a position to give back to the next generation of founders coming up behind me.” –J.H.