YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki Talks Childhood in Chat With Mom

Susan Wojcicki
Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic for YouTube

Susan Wojcicki speaks at YouTube #Brandcast presented by Google at The Theater at Madison Square Garden on April 29, 2015 in New York City.

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki is one of the most powerful women in tech, but at one point she was just a kid with a hideous pink rug. The Google executive recently interviewed her mother, Esther, as part of the Huffington Post’s new parent-child interview series titled Talk To Me, and she wanted to know the secret of her success as a parent.

You see, Wojcicki’s sister, Anne, is co-founder and CEO of biotech company 23andMe, and a third sister is an epidemiologist. Susan wondered... "What did you feed us for breakfast, mom? What happened?!" 

"I gave you a ton of freedom," Eshter replied. "I let you pick your own breakfast cereal — as long as it didn’t have sugar in it. I gave you a lot of opportunity pick all kinds of things in your life. For example, you were five or six, you picked a hot pink rug for your bedroom and we had to live with that for 10 years! It was like, fluorescent pink. It was shag."

She added, "So I think in today’s world parents don’t give kids enough independence or they’re worried if they don’t control their education, they won’t succeed."

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The Talk To Me series pairs influencers with either a parent or a child. Other episodes will feature Richard Branson, Ron Howard and Laura Bush, among others, speaking candidly with their children. In another, Nicole Richie offers straight talk to dad Lionel Richie, telling him "women haven’t really been your strong suit."

Watch Wojcicki’s episode below:


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