Google's self-driving car division Waymo has hired former eBay executive Tekedra Mawakana as the vice president of public policy and government affairs eight months after the company hired its first general counsel Kevin Vosen.The move comes as Waymo prepares to take on self-driving technology competitor Uber Technologies regarding allegedly stolen trade secrets. Waymo’s parent, Alphabet, has hired Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan as its external advisers. Miss Mawakana said on LinkedIn: ‘While Waymo is perhaps best known for their innovative self-driving technology, I’m most drawn to their strong commitment to safety, and their thoughtful approach to shaping policies in this fast-evolving space. I look forward to building on this solid foundation.’
Chief Executive Officer John Krafcik said: ‘Tekedra is a smart and creative leader who brings deep knowledge of the public policy issues facing complex technology and innovative business models. As we take fully self-driving cars to the roads, Tekedra will work with policymakers at all levels to realise the enormous safety, mobility and economic benefits of this technology.’
Miss Mawakana was most recently Vice President of Global Government Relations and Public Policy in charge of global strategies behind public policy, legislative affairs, antitrust policy and regulatory matters – heading a global team working with regulators and lawmakers all around the world in relation to e-commerce, small business empowerment, privacy, intellectual property and immigration. Before her time at eBay, Miss Mawakana was the Global Head of Public Policy, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel at Yahoo Inc and before that served in various roles at AOL Inc.