Serena Williams Discusses Alexis Ohanian's Decision to Leave Reddit on Instagram

Bianca Betancourt


From Harper's BAZAAR

  • Alexis Ohanian and Serena Williams discussed Ohanian's decision to leave his high-ranking position at Reddit so the company could fill his spot with a Black candidate.
  • "We need diversity at the highest levels of business now more than ever," said Ohanian of his decision to leave the company behind.
  • The Reddit cofounder also credited his wife and daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian, as deciding factors in his decision.

Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian and his wife, Serena Williams, opened up about Ohanian's decision to step down from his top position.

Per People, the two filmed an intimate chat discussing Ohanian's career move that was shared to Williams's Instagram in an installment of the tennis player's Serena Saturday series. In addition to announcing his departure, Ohanian encouraged his board members to hire a Black candidate as his replacement.

"I thought about what I could do beyond a social media post, beyond a donation," said Ohanian. "We need diversity at the highest levels of business now more than ever. Once I realized why I needed to do it, it became very easy."

During the discussion, Williams also shut down circulating rumors that she had encouraged her husband to leave his position in the midst of the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement.

"A lot of people might think I told you to do something, or I forced you," said Williams. "[But] he doesn't listen to me, ever."

Ohanian went on to explain that apart from making way for a Black candidate to play a vital role as part of the Reddit team, he also based his decision on needing to do his part to make the world a better place for his and Williams's two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian.

"I wanted to put as much weight behind the gesture as I could because I felt I owed it to you and I owed it to her," Ohanian said. "One of the things that really broke me at some point in the last week, I was looking at Olympia, she's 2½ now, and she is such a pure, just blank canvas. She only knows love. There is not an ounce of hate in her body.

"That's the crushing thing. At some point, Olympia is going to have to have a talk with you, a talk with us, but especially a talk with you, about how she's going to have to work that much harder, how she's going to have to deal with this much more," continued Ohanian. "That pisses me off."

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