If the name Marissa Mayer doesn’t sound familiar, Google it – that’s probably what she’d want you to do, anyway.
The Silicon Valley veteran’s handprint is all over the online powerhouse, from Gmail to Google Maps.
But now Mayer, 37, is trading in her executive title at Google to be the new CEO of Yahoo, it was widely announced Monday. In honor of her first day on the job at a company the tech world regards as the struggling former competitor of the place she called home for more than 10 years, here are five things to know about Yahoo’s new leader:
1. She Made History
When she started working for Google in 1999 – years before Google became an everyday verb – Mayer was the company’s first female engineer.
But “Googirl” nickname aside, “I’m not a woman at Google. I’m a geek at Google,” Mayer, who was the company’s 20th employee, told CNN in April. “If you can find something that you’re really passionate about, whether you’re a man or a woman comes a lot less into play. Passion is a gender-neutralizing force.”
2. She’s Glamorous
Add this title to her resume: Woman of the Year. In 2009, Mayer was one of the leading ladies highlighted by Glamour magazine in its annual special issue. Photographed in a striking red dress, Mayer said, “When people think about computer science, they imagine people with pocket protectors and thick glasses who code all night. I do code all night! I am the stereotype, but I also break the stereotype.” Her wardrobe staples: Oscar de la Renta and Armani duds.
3. And So Is Her Apartment
If Google is your homepage, you’re familiar with its clean-cut style and simple color scheme – just like Mayer’s home. “It used to be people would come over to my apartment and say, ‘Does your apartment look like Google or does Google look like your apartment?” she told The New York Times in a 2009 profile. “I can’t articulate it anymore. I really love color. I’m not very knick-knacky or cluttery. My place has very clean simple lines. There are some elements of fun and whimsy. That has always appealed to me.”
4. Her Cupcake Recipe Is Better Than Yours
“When she wanted to come up with the perfect cupcake, she came up with a spreadsheet of ingredients to figure out the perfect recipe,” Search Engine Land editor-in-chief Danny Sullivan said. This was also the secret to her success: “She took the same approach to launching products at Google,” he said.
5. She’s Going to Be a Mom
Call it the ultimate start-up – a family! Ready to take on yet another important role, Mayer, who married financier Zachary Bogue in 2009, Tweeted out yet another announcement the same day word broke of her move to Yahoo. “Another piece of good news today – @zackbogue and I are expecting a new baby boy [in October]!”