In 2014, Apple CEO Tim Cook came out as gay, making him the first CEO of a major company to do so.
Recently, Cook shared that his decision to come out was one he was happy with — and he’s embraced his unique place as someone who is paving the way for other leaders in the space. In an interview with CNN, Cook said that being gay was “God’s greatest gift to me.” Part of his motivation for coming out was hearing from children who were bullied for their sexual orientations. He wanted to come out to help them.
“I needed to do something for them,” Cook told CNN. His goal was to show that you “can be gay and still go on and do some big jobs in life.”
Cook said he was shocked that he was the first out CEO of a Fortune 500 company. He expressed gratitude that others have come out since. And while he may be the leading face of support for the LGBT community in the tech space, he is surely not alone. Google was ranked by Advocate as one of 10 Companies Leading Global LBGT Rights for publishing data that showed “messages about diversity and equality for the LGBT community have widespread impact.” Google has also partnered with several LGBT organizations that protect against employment discrimination, The Advocate reported.