Google’s First Employees Are Now…

Google's First Employees Are Now...

Google’s first 21 employees have come and gone, leaving only 6 of their earliest employees to still work at the internet giant – and that includes Larry and Sergey.

Some early Google employees have gone on to become entrepreneurs, others angel investors, and a lucky few have gone on to become top executives at other tech companies. A few are happily retired.

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In 2015, a Quora user compiled a list of all the original Googlers and where there careers have taken them. Of the first 21 employees, only six are still at the company.

Here is what’s become of the first 6 employees since launching their careers at Google.


Harry Cheung was an original Google engineer. Now he’s an angel investor in startups like Caviar, Qwiki and Badgeville. 

Employed by Google from: January 1999 – December 2004

Most recent position at Google: Engineer. His nickname used to be Harry “Spider-Man” Cheung because he was a “crawl” engineering, monitoring the progress of Google’s spiders as they indexed the web.

Current Company/Position: Angel investor in startups including Caviar, Qwiki, Badgeville and PrePay and founder of Roostify, a home-lending startup. He also likes to race Ferraris.


Ray Sidney was a software engineer at Google who left 18 months before the IPO.

Employed by Google from: January 1999 – March 2003 – He left about 18 months before the IPO, which made him quite wealthy.

Most recent position at Google: Software engineer 

Current Company/Position: Owner of Big George Ventures, a sustainable real estate developer. He’s also a triathlete, an amateur pilot, and has donated $1 million to help launch a public bus service near Lake Tahoe, according to CNET.


Heather Cairns was an HR manager at Google. Now she’s happily retired, dabbling in angel investing, and running a real estate development firm. 

Employed by Google from: 1998 – 2005

Most recent position at Google: HR manager. She hired Google’s first 200 employees. 

Current Company/Position: Angel investor who provides funding for women-led companies that are pursuing social ventures. Her LinkedIn also lists her as the president of Coastal Streets, a small real estate development company in Massachusetts.

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Craig Silverstein was Larry and Sergey’s first hire. He left in 2012 to join the education startup Khan Academy.

Employed by Google from: 1998 – 2012

Most recent position at Google: Various projects, including mentoring engineers and serving as technology director. As Google’s third employee, he helped actually build the search engine. 

Current Company/Position: Dean of Infrastructure at Khan Academy


Sergey Brin is a cofounder of Google and serves as the president of Google parent company, Alphabet.

Employed by Google from: 1998 – present

Current position at Google: Besides any cofounder duties, Sergey Brin was overseeing Google X, the company’s “moonshot factory,” until Google’s reorganization in August 2015. Now, Brin is Alphabet’s president


Larry Page is the cofounder of Google and CEO of Alphabet.

Employed by Google from: 1998 – present

Current position at Google: Cofounder of Google and CEO of Google’s parent company, Alphabet.

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