Google parent company’s top lawyer to leave following scrutiny for potentially inappropriate relationships

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Google parent Alphabet last year hired outside attorneys to help with its probe of claims that executives mishandled or overlooked sexual misconduct allegations, including against Drummond, according to a person familiar with the matter. A former attorney for Google wrote an August blog post about her alleged affair with Drummond, as well as his affairs with others, and claimed he mistreated her and their child.

The company, during Drummond’s tenure, also approved tens of millions of dollars in payments to executives including former Android chief Andy Rubin, who was also alleged to have had inappropriate relationships with subordinates. As a result, employees staged a mass walkout in late 2018, and some shareholders have sued over the payments.

Drummond will not receive an exit package, spokeswoman Jenn Kaiser said. The company has not named a replacement yet. Drummond, reached via email, declined to comment.

Google has been shuffling top executives. Last month, co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin said they would step aside from day-to-day roles with the parent company and hand the chief executive reins to Sundar Pichai. Eric Schmidt, Google’s former chief executive, relinquished his executive chairmanship role with Alphabet last June.

Google and other corporations have been facing increased employee activism over their handling of credible misconduct claims. Intel chief executive Brian Krzanich stepped down in 2018 after an investigation showed he had had a consensual relationship with an employee, in violation of the firm’s policies. And McDonald’s fired chief executive Steve Easterbrook for violating a policy prohibiting managers from having sexual relationships with subordinates.

Jennifer Blakely, a former Google lawyer who worked for Drummond, claimed in a Medium post that she and Drummond had an extramarital affair for several years and now have a child. She said he abandoned them both and refused to discuss child support.

“Other than Jennifer, I never started a relationship with anyone else who was working at Google or Alphabet. Any suggestion otherwise is simply untrue,” Drummond said in a statement to BuzzFeed in August. He married another employee, who was not in his chain of command, last year, CNBC reported.

As one of Google’s longest-serving officers, Drummond helped oversee the company’s transition from a venture-backed search engine to one of the world’s most valuable companies with a hand in nearly ever sector of the economy.

But Google will be without Drummond as it faces antritrust probes from federal and state regulators and a European inquiry into its proposed acquisition of fitness tracking firm Fitbit.

In 2018, he was paid $47.3 million in total compensation, just slightly less than CFO Ruth Porat. Drummond has sold over $200 million worth of Alphabet stock over the past year.



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