Alexis Ohanian Sr., the co-founder of Reddit, is stepping down from the company’s board. Ohanian announced the news on Friday, June 5. Along with stepping down from his seat, Ohanian is pledging $1 million to Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp and is asking to be replaced on the Reddit board by an African-American.
Ohanian, who is married to tennis star Serena Williams, says he is stepping down as an act of leadership and also to lead by example and show his black daughter that he was not being silent and complacent during these current times as protests against police brutality and social injustice, along with demonstrations for the end of systemic racism continue nationwide.
“I co-founded Reddit 15 years ago to help people find community and a sense of belonging. It is long overdue to do the right thing. I’m doing this for me, for my family, and for my country,” Ohanian wrote on his website. “I’m writing this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: ‘What did you do?’
“I have resigned as a member of the reddit board, I have urged them to fill my seat with a black candidate, and I will use future gains on my Reddit stock to serve the black community, chiefly to curb racial hate, and I’m starting with a pledge of $1M to Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp.
“I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now. To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: do not stop.”
Ohanian also shared a video originally posted by Serena.
The current protests in the United States were sparked by the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department which has led to the arrests of four officers.
Floyd was killed after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on the back of his neck for nearly 8 minutes while Floyd pleaded for air. The ex-officer, Derek Chauvin, has been arrested for third-degree murder. The three other officers involved — Thomas Lane, J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao — have been fired by the Minneapolis Police Department and remain under investigation.