Denise Young Smith to Run Diversity Programs for Apple as New VP

Denise young smith apple

Denise Young Smith, Apple’s head of Worldwide Human Resources, will now run diversity programs for the company under a newly created VP position, 9to5Mac is reporting. Reporting directly to CEO Tim Cook, Smith’s new role going forward at Apple will officially be Vice President for Inclusion and Diversity. She has confirmed the new title today on her LinkedIn profile as well.

Denise Young Smith is Apple’s vice president of Inclusion and Diversity at Apple. She reports to CEO Tim Cook… Since joining Apple in 1997, Denise has served in several key HR roles. Most recently as Vice President of Worldwide Human Resources and Talent.

“Our inclusion and diversity efforts are critically important to Apple’s future. Denise’s years of experience, expertise and passion will help us make an even greater impact in this area.”

Smith has been at Apple for over 20 years and was first promoted to VP of worldwide HR back in 2014 from her previous role as head of HR for just Apple’s retail stores, a role that Steve Jobs handpicked her for during the early days of Apple’s retail efforts.

Apple’s previous head of diversity and inclusion Jeffrey Siminoff left the company back in January 2016 for Twitter. He reported to Denise who reported to Tim Cook, but now the Inclusion and Diversity team headed by Smith will report directly to Cook, making the new VP position the first to do so. 

The source notes that Smith’s new position will mean Apple will be without a permanent VP of HR as Luca Maestri, the company’s SVP and CFO, steps in to fill the role temporarily.

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  • Olley

    Hire the right person for the right job. That’s the bottom line. Sadly what liberals and social justice warriors want nowadays is over emphasis on diversity over skills and knowledge. That’s racism by itself.

  • Si2k78

    Only if the world was so perfect and there was no such thing as sexism, racism or any other form of prejudice. The point being, hiring practices are not immune to prejudice and having proper policies help keep businesses and their hiring practices accountable.

  • Olley

    But walk me through the exact policies of this diversity program and what she does on a daily basis…. how can a person make sure the diversity is implemented without asking “how many non-white minorities in this department” or “this project has 7 people on board oh wait there’s no black dude??” Thoughts like these are racism – they are fighting racism Using racism itself.

  • Si2k78

    Your oversimplying the issue. I can understand your concern, but that’s simply an over exaggeration brought about by here say. Forcefully hiring a person of colour over a person from the majority is not the purpose of these initiatives. I’ll answer your question directly: on a day to day basis, an HR department or lead that has this sort of mandate can develop and implement hiring practices that help to limit or stamp out any form of personal prejudice by hiring managers, intentional or not. They can mandate that hiring panels consist of more than one manager and that the decision to hire is collectively decided; they can mandate that a point system for questions be used to reduce subjectivity; they can create new or improve interview questions that better reflect the need for cultural understanding and diversity of their consumer base. Ect. I hope this helps you understand that this issue is deeper than what it appears to be on the surface.