The She Word: Kawana T. King, lawyer and “force for good”

In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating the powerful, dynamic and creative women of Google. Like generations before them, these women break down barriers and defy expectations at work and in their communities. Over the course of the month, we’ll help you get to know a few of these Google women, and share a bit about who they are and why they inspire us.

In this installment of the She Word, we talked to Kawana T. King, a lawyer in our New York office. In addition to JD, she’s earned the title of “hostess with the mostess”—just ask anyone who’s attended her annual Christmas party.

How do you explain your job at a dinner party?

I usually don’t … I like leaving work at work. But if I need to explain, I say that I provide legal counsel for our advertising products.

Why are you proud to be a woman at Google?

In Google’s legal department, we have four female vice presidents. There’s a lot of talk in tech about needing more women in leadership positions, but I get to witness that everyday. It’s really inspiring.

k

Why did you decide to pursue law, and why practice it at Google?

Growing up I was always told that I argued too much, so becoming a lawyer seemed to be a “natural fit.” Throughout my career, I’ve practiced law across various industries, like entertainment and financial services. Working at Google, I get to bring legal expertise to the development of groundbreaking products and services. And one of the best parts about Google is that I’m not just here to be a lawyer—there are opportunities to pursue personal interests, like our diversity efforts, as well.

If you could ask one woman from history a question … who would it be and what would you ask?

I would ask Harriet Tubman what gave her the strength to face her fears and take action. We are all faced with obstacles that we must overcome, but it’s hard to get past the intimidation. All tips help!

What advice would you give to women starting out in their careers?

Know your worth, display confidence and don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. If you doubt yourself, you invite others to do the same.

What do you hope to accomplish on behalf of women everywhere?

Quite simply … I’ll pay it forward. I’ve been lucky to have powerful and positive female influences in my life (hi Mom!). By exhibiting character, confidence, and a strong work ethic, I hope to be a force for good in another young girl’s life.

How do you spend most of your time outside of work?

I love traveling—Paris and Thailand are my all-time favorite spots. I’ve also gotten hooked on traveling for Carnival, which is an annual festival that occurs in various countries. So far, I’ve celebrated Carnival in  Trinidad, Barbados and Miami. My next trip is to Italy—I’m taking my mom for her 65th birthday!

The She Word: Kawana T. King, lawyer and “force for good”

In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating the powerful, dynamic and creative women of Google. Like generations before them, these women break down barriers and defy expectations at work and in their communities. Over the course of the month, we’ll help you get to know a few of these Google women, and share a bit about who they are and why they inspire us.

In this installment of the She Word, we talked to Kawana T. King, a lawyer in our New York office. In addition to JD, she’s earned the title of “hostess with the mostess”—just ask anyone who’s attended her annual Christmas party.

How do you explain your job at a dinner party?

I usually don’t … I like leaving work at work. But if I need to explain, I say that I provide legal counsel for our advertising products.

Why are you proud to be a woman at Google?

In Google’s legal department, we have four female vice presidents. There’s a lot of talk in tech about needing more women in leadership positions, but I get to witness that everyday. It’s really inspiring.

k

Why did you decide to pursue law, and why practice it at Google?

Growing up I was always told that I argued too much, so becoming a lawyer seemed to be a “natural fit.” Throughout my career, I’ve practiced law across various industries, like entertainment and financial services. Working at Google, I get to bring legal expertise to the development of groundbreaking products and services. And one of the best parts about Google is that I’m not just here to be a lawyer—there are opportunities to pursue personal interests, like our diversity efforts, as well.

If you could ask one woman from history a question … who would it be and what would you ask?

I would ask Harriet Tubman what gave her the strength to face her fears and take action. We are all faced with obstacles that we must overcome, but it’s hard to get past the intimidation. All tips help!

What advice would you give to women starting out in their careers?

Know your worth, display confidence and don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. If you doubt yourself, you invite others to do the same.

What do you hope to accomplish on behalf of women everywhere?

Quite simply … I’ll pay it forward. I’ve been lucky to have powerful and positive female influences in my life (hi Mom!). By exhibiting character, confidence, and a strong work ethic, I hope to be a force for good in another young girl’s life.

How do you spend most of your time outside of work?

I love traveling—Paris and Thailand are my all-time favorite spots. I’ve also gotten hooked on traveling for Carnival, which is an annual festival that occurs in various countries. So far, I’ve celebrated Carnival in  Trinidad, Barbados and Miami. My next trip is to Italy—I’m taking my mom for her 65th birthday!

The High Five: bring back the bees and beware the Ides

You made it to Friday. Can we get a High Five? In this new series, we’ll show you what’s trending on Google with a look at a few of the top searches from the week of March 13.

cheerios

Cheerios

Where have all the bumble-bees gone? People are buzzing about Cheerios this week, as the brand dropped its bee mascot to raise awareness for the alarming decline of the world’s bee population. They’ve pledged to give away 100 million wildflower seeds to bring back the bees.

Luck of the Irish 

People aren’t just searching for pots of gold, they’re turning to Google for more information about the history of St. Patrick’s Day, the luck of the Irish, and local parades and pubs.

Beware the Ides of March

If you’ve always wondered why we should beware the Ides of March, which occurred this Wednesday, you’re not alone. Many searched about the meaning of Ides of March and who was famously killed on that day.

Did someone say free food?

Searches for American Airlines took off after the airline announced plans to offer free meals to passengers seated in economy on cross-country flights.

This is you searching “This is Us”

Fans of NBC’s hit show “This is Us” had a big week. The season finale aired on Tuesday, and many turned to Google to learn more about the show’s actors and surprising season finale.

The High Five: bring back the bees and beware the Ides

You made it to Friday. Can we get a High Five? In this new series, we’ll show you what’s trending on Google with a look at a few of the top searches from the week of March 13.

cheerios

Cheerios

Where have all the bumble-bees gone? People are buzzing about Cheerios this week, as the brand dropped its bee mascot to raise awareness for the alarming decline of the world’s bee population. They’ve pledged to give away 100 million wildflower seeds to bring back the bees.

Luck of the Irish 

People aren’t just searching for pots of gold, they’re turning to Google for more information about the history of St. Patrick’s Day, the luck of the Irish, and local parades and pubs.

Beware the Ides of March

If you’ve always wondered why we should beware the Ides of March, which occurred this Wednesday, you’re not alone. Many searched about the meaning of Ides of March and who was famously killed on that day.

Did someone say free food?

Searches for American Airlines took off after the airline announced plans to offer free meals to passengers seated in economy on cross-country flights.

This is you searching “This is Us”

Fans of NBC’s hit show “This is Us” had a big week. The season finale aired on Tuesday, and many turned to Google to learn more about the show’s actors and surprising season finale.

The She Word: Monique Vaz Vieira, keeping the “bad guys” away

In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating the powerful, dynamic and creative women of Google. Like generations before them, these women break down barriers and defy expectations at work and in their communities. Over the course of the month, we’ll help you get to know a few of these Google women, and share a bit about who they are and why they inspire us.

In today’s installment of the “She Word” series, we talked to Monique Vaz Vieira, a 10-year Googler and software engineer in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Why are you proud to be a woman at Google?

As a senior female engineer, I’m proud to be a woman in a male-dominated industry. I’m also proud to be the Latin America regional tech lead for Women@Google, an internal community that empowers female Googlers with professional development and networking. I’ve been a Googler for more than 10 years (55 percent of its existence as a company!), and I’ve felt supported to pursue my professional and personal goals throughout all of those years.

monique
Monique adventuring with her two kids.

How do you explain your job at a dinner party?

My team keeps the bad guys away—our mission is to keep users safe and our products free of spam and abuse.

What’s your favorite thing to do outside of work?

I enjoy all things related to food—I love trying out new recipes (my current favorite is paella) and I grow my own vegetables, herbs and fruit. I’ve recently rediscovered my passion for off-road adventures after a family trip to Lavras Novas (about 70 miles outside of Belo Horizonte), where we explored waterfalls and dirt trails.

What advice would you give to women starting out in
their careers?

When I started out in my career, I wish someone would have told me, “don’t be afraid to be yourself.” People are different and won’t necessarily take the same path to succeed, so you need to find your own.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was little I wanted to be an astronaut or a ballet dancer, but when I was a bit older, I wanted to be an architect. I crossed astronaut and dancer from my list, but I still consider studying architecture.

What’s your life motto?

I constantly remind myself that life should be enjoyed every single day. It’s easy to fall into the trap of making great plans for the weekend or even for when you retire, but you forget to take advantage of all the opportunities you have right now and really enjoy the present.