DEI and Belonging in the Cloud with Jason Smith


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Jason Smith, founder of the Mixed Googlers group here at Google, joins Stephanie Wong to talk about DEI and the importance of belonging in tech.

Jason helps us better understand what the concepts diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging mean to him. It’s more than just including different types of people, Jason tells us, companies must also give them equal opportunities and say in their jobs. We talk about the difference between DEI and belonging. Belonging means feeling comfortable and accepted and conveys a more concrete, real-life sense of community that brings DEI to life. While DEI is easy enough for a company to measure, it’s sometimes tricky to get a clear picture of belonging in a company. Jason talks about possible solutions to this problem.

Growing up as the child of both a white and a black parent, Jason understands the importance of feeling a sense of belonging as a mixed race individual. In that vein, he founded Mixed Googlers, and he tells us more about how this group supports other mixed individuals at Google. He talks about the events they have hosted, including talks with famous mixed race speakers, and how the grassroots efforts to form and grow Mixed Googlers has created a great community.

Later, Jason talks about DEI and belonging in tech companies and cloud specifically. He introduces us to some fun ways to incorporate DEI principles into company culture in a way that encourages all individuals to contribute their personal perspectives. He stresses the importance of allowing mistakes, especially when discussing diversity issues with your coworkers, so the conversation can be about growth and not about confrontation.

Jason Smith

Jason Smith is a Customer Engineer supporting application modernization and the founder of Mixed Googlers, an ERG dedicated to mixed race individuals.

Cool things of the week
  • Sign up for the Google Cloud Fly Cup Challenge blog
  • Google Cloud Firewall introduces Network Firewall Policies, IAM-governed Tags and more blog
  • Building trust in the data with Dataplex blog
  • Google Belonging site
  • Google 2022 Diversity Annual Report site
  • Sugi Dakks: Not the Only One | Talks at Google video
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Keynote site
  • BigQuery site
What’s something cool you’re working on?

Stephanie is working on content for Next and the Drone Racing League.


Stephanie Wong

612 episodes