Google’s presence in Atlanta expands in stature and office space – SaportaReport

By Maria Saporta

Google celebrated its love for Atlanta when it opened its new Midtown office space on July 27.

In its new location, the tech company has clearly embraced Atlanta and Georgia — highlighting its role as a center for civil and human rights for all, as well as its multicultural music and entertainment offerings. Governor Brian Kemp helped officially open the new office.

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Google’s Matthew Pritchard shows Gov. Brian Kemp and Marty Kemp an exhibit of ribbons containing Google’s G. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

Matthew Pritchard, co-site manager for Google in Atlanta, said the goal in building the space was: “Let’s design this as a love letter to Atlanta.”

Google has expanded its presence in Atlanta. It now has more than 1,000 employees working at its two Midtown locations and its Douglas County data center.

Google’s new Midtown office is located at 1105 West Peachtree Street, and the company leases 19 floors of the building, or approximately 500,000 square feet. He also kept his offices in West Peachtree and on 10th St., just two blocks south of the new building.

Google’s Atlanta workforce is expected to continue growing, largely due to the company’s 2020 commitment to double the number of black employees by 2025.

“This is literally a whole new chapter and an exciting chapter for Google and technology in Atlanta,” said Reggie McKnight, Google’s global social impact manager based in Atlanta. “It’s exciting to see technology embrace Atlanta’s richness.”

Two years ago, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and its parent company, Alphabet, said that Google had committed to improving the representation of underrepresented groups at senior levels by 30% by 2025,” as well as doubling the number of black Googlers in same time.

Atlanta has more black students than any other city in the country thanks to the presence of top historically black colleges and universities and its top public institutions—Georgia State University and Georgia Tech—to name just two.

colorful interior staircase

A colorful stairwell in Google’s new Midtown office building pays homage to the rainbow sidewalk several blocks away. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

For this reason, Atlanta is well positioned to increase its share of Google’s investment and workforce. The company has committed to investing $7 billion in US offices by 2021 with the goal of adding 10,000 new full-time Google employees.

“Google has a saying — we want to build for everyone,” McKnight said. “I can’t think of a city that better represents building for all than Atlanta with its outstanding civil and human rights heritage.”

While touring the Atlanta offices, it was clear that the company embraces Atlanta’s diverse spirit. Its cafeteria is called the WERD Café in honor of America’s first black-owned and programmed radio station, an Atlanta claim to fame.

“Inspired by the city’s legacy of social change, our office was designed as a tribute to the people of Atlanta, with each floor an ode to Atlanta’s cultural, musical and artistic history,” the company wrote in an email, adding that it worked with several than 50 local and diverse businesses to design and build the new space and included artwork by more than 20 local artists.

heart and GA

A two-story heart in the main lobby of Google’s new Midtown space shows the company’s love for Atlanta and Georgia. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

In the main lobby on the 18th floor, a large heart welcomes visitors with a large map of Georgia. A staircase has a rainbow design to show the company’s support for the LGBTQ+ community.

The company said that by 2021, Google products helped deliver $13.2 billion in economic activity to tens of thousands of businesses, nonprofits, publishers, creators and Georgian developers.

Google also announced during the office opening that it is committing $1 million to the Urban League of Atlanta to support the nonprofit’s work training underserved communities throughout the state. .

Pritchard said Google has had a presence in Atlanta since 2001, when it started with about 10 salespeople. When he moved to his 10th Street location, Pritchard said former President Jimmy Carter helped open that space.

view of Google's original Midtown building

A view of Google’s first Midtown office space as seen from its new Midtown office space. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

“The real story is we’ve gone from having a small advertising office in Atlanta to sending global teams to Atlanta,” said McKnight, who has one of those globa.l roles. “Google is bringing a lot of its top talent to Atlanta from around the country.”

In addition to McKnight and Pritchard, top Google executives in Atlanta include:

  • Daniel Berlin, Vice President of Engineering and Co-Head of the Google Atlanta Site
  • Monique Picou, Vice President of Global Server Operations and Technology Strategy at Google
  • Felica Coney, Google’s Vice President of Operations and Sync for the Americas, and
  • Dasheika Ruffin, Global Head of Community Engagement and Strategic Partnerships

McKnight was quick to point out that Google is deliberately non-hierarchical, so it doesn’t have a traditional org chart.

As much as Google is embracing Atlanta, it is also expanding to many other cities in the United States and around the world.

Google is headquartered in Mountain View, California and employs 45,000 people in the Bay Area. It has a total of 156,500 employees worldwide.

New York City is also another major Google hub with around 12,000 employees. Other major Google hubs include Chicago, which has about 1,800 Googlers. Google opened an office in Austin, Texas in 2007 and now has more than 1,500 employees in Central Texas.

Google also has campuses in Montreal, Berlin, London, Madrid, Seoul, São Paulo, Tel Aviv and Warsaw.

When asked how Atlanta fits into Google’s global landscape, McKnight was upbeat about his adopted hometown.

“Google has a saying — we want to build for everyone,” McKnight said. “I can’t think of a city that better represents building for all than Atlanta with its outstanding civil and human rights heritage.”

Top Googlers in Atlanta:

head shot

Top row (left to right): Monique Picou, Reggie McKnight, Daniel Berlin
Bottom row (left to right): Felica Coney, Matthew Pritchard, Dasheika Ruffin

go short

A large map of Georgia highlights Google’s presence in Atlanta (Photo by Maria Saporta)

boomboxes

An art installation features a collage of boomboxes on the wall of Google’s 18th-floor lobby of its new Midtown office building. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

corner with rocking chairs

Google’s new office building includes several spaces where Googlers can work comfortably or socialize. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

eat the rainbow

Google’s “Eat the Rainbow” area offers a selection of colorful fruits and vegetables to promote healthy eating. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

elevator lobby

One of the colorful elevator halls in Google’s new Midtown office building. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

google building during the day

Google’s new office building in the city center during the day. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

google cassette tape

A close-up of tape with Google’s trademark “G”. (Photo by Maria Saporta.)

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