Denise Young

Board Chair at SFJAZZ

Denise Young Smith is of the most prominent African-American female executives in Silicon Valley, Smith’s 20-year career at Apple includes leading human resources and most recently overseeing the company’s global effort for an inclusive and embracing culture and workforce. As executive-in-residence, Smith will work with students to build an early career-stage awareness of inclusive leadership and diverse talent. Denise's work with Cornell Tech will be a natural extension of her passion for leading diversity initiatives and positively impacting the next generation of business and tech leaders and entrepreneurs. As New York City’s tech hub, Cornell Tech attracts students from across the globe, growing the tech community and inspiring broader impact. Denise Young Smith was Apple’s vice president of Inclusion and Diversity at Apple and reported to CEO Tim Cook. Denise has served in several key HR roles. Most recently, Denise was Vice President of Worldwide Human Resources and Talent. For over 10 years, she sat on the leadership team that built Apple’s retail organization, which now welcomes more than one million people every day. Apple stores have redefined the retail experience and their talented employees have become the face of Apple for customers around the world. Before retail, Denise ran HR for Apple’s Worldwide Operations and Corporate Employee Relations teams. Prior to Apple, Denise offered talent, HR and management consulting expertise to early-stage businesses including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers portfolio companies.


  • Board Chair

    August, 2010 - present


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