Of the many things Marissa Mayer worked on during her tenure at Google — a run-on list that includes virtually all our major products and services — perhaps the best example of her genius and leadership was designing the now iconic Google home page. It’s a mark of her incredible forethought and vision that for 14 years now, while most websites have been redesigned over and over, our home page looks just as it did when Marissa laid it out — clean, comforting and, in its own way, beautiful.
As one of the most influential female CEOs in the world, she’s a pathbreaker and a trailblazer and an inspiration to women everywhere. But when I think back to our time working together, the gender distinction melts away. She is simply one of the smartest, most talented leaders the tech world has ever known. Google was lucky to have her help us grow into what we became, and Yahoo is lucky to have her taking them someplace new. But really, it’s those millions of people who are looking for information — for answers — who benefit most. Because of everything Marissa has done and will do in the future, their search is infinitely more likely to produce positive results.
Schmidt is the executive chairman of Google