Meet Google’s new lead for ethical AI research after Timnit Gebru’s departure

Google named Marian Croak to manage 10 teams studying ethical considerations of AI.

Google last week named Marian Croak as the lead to oversee research on responsible AI. The reorganization comes weeks after ethical AI co-lead Timnit Gebru’s exit.

Marian Croak, one of the few Black executives at Google will lead 10 teams, also including scientists that will study the ethical considerations of AI. Marian Croak has been working with Google for the last six years as a VP and responsible for site reliability and also bringing public Wi-Fi to India’s railroads, stated Google’s blog post.

Google’s blog post also highlighted that Croak had spent decades working on groundbreaking technology, with over 200 patents in areas such as Voice over IP, which laid the foundation for the calls we all use to get things done and stay in touch during the pandemic.

“We have to make sure we have the frameworks and the software and the best practices designed by the researchers and the applied engineers, so we can proudly say that our systems are behaving in responsible ways,” said Marian Croak.

The appointment comes on the heels of the controversial firing of Timnit Gebru who was the technical co-lead of Google’s Ethical AI team. Gebru claimed she was fired over email after critiquing Google’s inclusion, diversity policies. The firing caused a lot of uproar within the company and on twitter.

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