Reddit announced on Wednesday, June 10, that Michael Seibel, the co-founder of what is now Twitch, will join the company’s board of directors, filling a vacancy left when the platform’s co-founder, Alexis Ohanian, stepped down last week.
Seibel has a background of leadership at tech start-ups, starting as the co-founder of justin.tv, the platform that would eventually become Twitch. After leaving his post as CEO of justin.tv in 2011, he helped launch the now-defunct video app Socialcam as CEO. Seibel is now a partner at Y Combinator and the CEO of the YC startup accelerator program, where he has worked since 2013.
“I want to thank Steve [Huffman], Alexis, and the entire Reddit board for this opportunity,” Seibel said in a statement. “I’ve known Steve and Alexis since 2007 and have been a Reddit user ever since. Over this period of time I’ve watched Reddit become part of the core fabric of the internet and I’m excited to help provide advice and guidance as Reddit continues to grow and tackle the challenges of bringing community and belonging to a broader audience.”
Prior to working in tech, Seibel earned a degree in political science from Yale and served as the finance director for former NAACP president and CEO Kweisi Mfume’s 2006 senate campaign in Maryland.
“Few people have Michael’s deep background in tech and know the challenges and opportunities we face as well as he does,” said Huffman, Reddit’s co-founder and CEO. “So we are honored he is joining us. Not to mention, he is one of the smartest and kindest people in tech.”
Reddit said that Seibel has a track record of promoting diversity and inclusion inside startups.
Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian resigned from the board on June 5 in the midst of growing protests following the death of George Floyd. In a tweet, Ohanian said he asked the board to fill his seat with a black candidate in order to bring more diversity to the five-member board. He also announced that he will use the earnings from his Reddit stock “to serve the black community.”
Ohanian, who is married to tennis star Serena Williams, says the decision was in part for his daughter. “I’m doing this for me, for my family and for my country. I’m writing this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks, ‘What did you do?’” he wrote.