Alexis Ohanian wants working dads to enjoy 16 weeks of paid paternity leave like he did
Taking 16 weeks of paternity leave has been life-changing for Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian. It has shifted his view of what it means to support his wife, tennis superstar Serena Williams, and their one-year-old daughter Olympia.
Being able to take time off, he wrote in an essay on Glamour, was “one of the most important decisions I’ve made.”
Now, he wants other men to be given the same opportunity to experience fatherhood the way he did – especially those who do not have the same luxury of paid time-off.
The tech titan is not only advocating for paid paternity leave to be implemented across the US but is also urging working dads to take a breather from work, step up, and take a more active role in raising their kids without the fear of missing out at work.
“After coming back, I started hearing from Silicon Valley founders, from employees, who all said the same thing, which was that they appreciated this kind of air cover,” Ohanian told The Associated Press.
His decision meant “someone who was very ambitious, very career-driven, very goal oriented” like himself could pull away from the all-too-demanding world of tech to prioritise family.
Ohanian has taken his advocacy on the road and partnered with Unilever. The global consumer goods company recently kicked off a US$1m fund for working dads who have no paid paternity leave benefits to fall back on while caring for their children.