In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we’re celebrating the fascinating tales and essential contributions of our Hispanic Googlers. Over the course of the month, we’ll share a bit about their histories, their households, and what retains them busy inside and out of doors of labor. First up is Susanna Kohly, builder of “digital bridges,” San Francisco resident and mom of two boys (and mini Instagram celebrities).

Give us the ten-second, one-sentence model of what you do at Google.

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Here’s Susanna in Old Havana throughout a piece journey this yr.

My job has two components (so I would want 20 seconds!). I work on the Hispanic Marketing crew to assist the 57 million U.S. Hispanics join with Google as an organization. Inspired by my Cuban heritage, I additionally co-founded Google Cuba, a crew that brings better entry to connectivity, new applied sciences, and Google merchandise to Cuba to “construct digital bridges” between Cuba and the remainder of the world.

When did you (or generations earlier than you) immigrate to the U.S.?

I’m a product of the Cuban diaspora. My mom is American, my father was born in Cuba, and I used to be born in Miami. I grew up talking two languages, mixing between two cultures and nationalities, so I perceive the anomaly of identification—how one can belong and never belong on the similar time. This has helped me adapt to completely different environments and given me the flexibility to mix in, to grasp, and to empathize. Growing up round different individuals who had left all the things to make a brand new life for his or her households, I turned obsessive about my circle of relatives’s story, Cuban historical past, and politics. I began studying and taking programs—something I may study that may make me really feel nearer to my heritage and the place I got here from.

Who has been probably the most influential particular person in your life?

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My Abuela (translation: grandmother) Carmen

My abuela Carmen—a mom of eight, an immigrant, and the matriarch of our household. Upon leaving Cuba, she offered each priceless factor she owned (together with her marriage ceremony ring!) to supply for her household and put her youngsters by way of faculty. She labored three jobs, discovered English, and has by no means complained about what she misplaced. Growing up, she informed me tales of survival, and instilled in me a notion of arduous work and sacrifice.  

I’m grateful to Google for giving me the chance to work on initiatives that bridge generations of Cuban individuals. My hope is that my two sons could have a way of their very own Cuban identification, identical to my abuela made certain I had.  

Tell us about one thing you are pleased with doing at Google

In December 2016, I accompanied our Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt to Havana to signal the first-ever web deal between Cuba and a U.S. web firm. The deal represented a barrier that hadn’t been bridged in additional than 5 a long time. I keep in mind standing within the press room earlier than the announcement, operating on pure adrenaline and an excessive amount of café Cubano. Despite our sheer exhaustion, the crew was proud to assist  to assist set a precedent that may  hopefully open the door for extra business and cultural exchanges between our two international locations.

Like many Cuban-Americans, I really feel a duty to reconnect with the island that our grandparents left. I’m a agency believer that we will develop stronger by working collectively versus rising aside in isolation.

Like many Cuban-Americans, I’ve a duty to reconnect with the island that our forefathers left. I’m a agency believer that we will develop stronger by working collectively.