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Last week, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian handed in his letter of resignation from the board and asked that his company replace him with a Black candidate to add more diversity. On Wednesday afternoon, it appears the digital forum giant took his advice to heart.
Michael Seibel, CEO of a Silicon Valley startup accelerator Y Combinator, has now become the first Black board member in Reddit's history.
"I want to thank Steve, Alexis, and the entire Reddit board for this opportunity,” Seibel said in a statement Reddit released on Wednesday. "I've known Steve and Alexis since 2007 and have been a Reddit user ever since. I'm excited to help provide advice and guidance as Reddit continues to grow and tackle the challenges of bringing community and belonging to a broader audience."
Reddit co-founder and CEO Steve Huffman also extended his welcome to Seibel, describing his excitement now that he's part of the team. "Few people have Michael’s deep background in tech and know the challenges and opportunities we face as well as he does,” Huffman said, “so we are honored he is joining us. Not to mention, he is one of the smartest and kindest people in tech.”
Early in his career, Seibel became the co-founder and CEO of Justin.tv, the interactive video platform that would later become Twitch. He later sold Twitch to Amazon for $970 million. Former board member Alexis Ohanian announced that he would be resigning from Reddit via social media, where he shared a video and tweet explaining his rationale behind the decision.
“I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now,” he said in the video address. “To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: do not stop.”
Reddit is also actively fighting to combat the racist and harmful subreddit pages that have been active for years now.