Chief Brand Officer at Uber, Bozoma Saint John, called “bulls**t” on the tech industry’s diversity problem during an interview at SXSW this week, according to CNN.
Saint John was hired by Uber as it struggles with diversity and corporate issues; the ride-sharing giant has been plagued by accusations of wrongdoing over the past year. The company’s diversity statistics claim that it’s 9 percent black.
The brand officer and former Apple executive said that she does all she can to fix Silicon Valley’s lack of diversity, but that she can’t do it alone.
“Why do I — as the black woman — have to fix that?” she asked. “There’s 50 of you, there’s one of me. Y’all fix it… Everybody else needs to make the noise — I want white men to make the noise.”
By “you,” Saint John meant white men, and she said that until “white men to look around in their office and say, ‘Oh look, there’s a lot of white men here. Let’s change this,'” nothing is going to change.
She went on to say that it’s up to the entire industry to work together in order to see progressive change and that Uber, or Apple or Alphabet can’t do it alone.
“It’s not up to one company — it’s up to the entire industry to make sure that we are moving the conversation forward. Sometimes those walls of competition need to come down so we can move the entire industry forward,” she explained.
According to a tech report in March 2017, Uber had no technical leaders who were black or Latinx. Among non-technical leadership positions, 3.7 percent of executives are black and 1.2 percent are Latinx.