From White House to YouTube, 6 Indian-origin leaders making waves in politics, tech, fashion

Neal Mohan, soon-to-be CEO of Youtube, shot to fame after Susan Wojcicki announced that she was stepping down

By Web Desk

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Photos: Agencies
Photos: Agencies

Published: Fri 17 Feb 2023, 12:15 PM

Last updated: Fri 17 Feb 2023, 12:28 PM

Indian-origin people have been making waves in business and politics as many have recently risen up the ranks.

Neal Mohan, soon-to-be CEO of Youtube, shot to fame after Susan Wojcicki announced that she was stepping down.


Here are six Indian-origin pioneers to watch out for:

1. Kamala Harris, Vice-President, United States of America

Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

Kamala Harris is the first Indian-American, Black-American woman to become Vice-President.


Harris is a California senator, the daughter of a Jamaican father and an Indian mother. She is also a former prosecutor whose grilling of Trump's appointees and unflappable cool has transported her to Democratic Party stardom.

Harris won her first election in 2003 and became San Francisco's district attorney. In 2010, she became the first woman of colour to be elected California's attorney general. Harris was elected to the US Senate in 2016.

2. Sundar Pichai, CEO, Alphabet Inc

Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

The CEO of Alphabet, Google's parent company, and Google itself, Sundar Pichai was appointed to his role in 2015.

The Indian-origin man received a Padma Bhushan, last year. On the eve of the 73rd Republic Day, the Ministry of Home Affairs stated that Sundar Pichai would be conferred with the prestigious award.

3. Neal Mohan, to-be CEO, Youtube

Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

Neal Mohan, an Indian American, is all set to become the next Chief Executive Officer of YouTube.

He recently said he is excited to continue this "awesome and important mission".

After Susan Wojcicki announced her resignation, Mohan became the new CEO of the online video-sharing platform.

Taking to Twitter, Mohan said, "Thank you, @SusanWojcicki. It's been amazing to work with you over the years. You've built YouTube into an extraordinary home for creators and viewers. I'm excited to continue this awesome and important mission. Looking forward to what lies ahead..."

Neal Mohan is currently the Chief Product Officer of YouTube. Before joining YouTube, Mohan was the Senior Vice President (SVP) of Display and Video Ads at Google.

4. Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister, United Kingdom

Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

Rishi Sunak last year became the UK's youngest Prime Minister and first person of colour to hold the position.

Sunak was selected as leader of the governing Conservative Party on Monday as it tried to stabilise the economy, and its own plunging popularity, after the brief, disastrous term of Liz Truss.

Truss resigned just 49 days after she was elected. She gave up her position after a failed budget in parliament.

5. Leena Nair, CEO, Chanel

French fashion house Chanel named Leena Nair, an executive from Unilever, as its new global CEO in 2021, picking a consumer goods veteran to run one of the world's biggest luxury goods groups.

Nair's career at Unilever spanned 30 years, most recently as the chief of human resources and a member of the company's executive committee.

A British national, born in India, Nair is a rare outsider at the helm of the tightly controlled family fashion house, known for its tweed suits, quilted handbags and No. 5 perfume.

The 52-year-old follows US businesswoman Maureen Chiquet, who came from a fashion background and was CEO of Chanel for nine years until early 2016.

6. Satya Nadella, Chairman, Microsoft

Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

Microsoft Corp named Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella as its new chairman, in place of John Thompson, in 2021.

Nadella, who took over as CEO in 2014 from Steve Ballmer, has been instrumental in scaling up its business including billion-dollar acquisitions like LinkedIn, Nuance Communications and ZeniMax.

The company said Thompson, who took over as chairman from the software giant's co-founder Bill Gates in 2014, will serve as lead independent director.

(With inputs from agencies)

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