Sunni Yuen is the appropriate person to kick off the new season of WCW! She was the last in person lecturer that came to our Technology Transactions class before we moved online in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. She is Senior Product Counsel at Google and she has worked on multiple projects within Google over 8 years she been there.
1) The best part of her job:
It’s really gratifying seeing the launch of a product that I’ve helped shape from a legal POV from day one. Also, the Engineers and Product Managers I work with are always game to debate the merits of fair use or platform liability over happy hour.
2) Change she wants to see in the legal industry:
“Diversity is oh so important. We’re talking about it more. I’d like to see more action and that requires a hard look at the blindspots in recruiting and professional development. I manage a work re-entry program at Google for talented lawyers who for extenuating circumstances have had to take time away from work and are thus, not on the radar when positions open.”
3) The lawyer she admires (her Werk crush):
There’s so many! I admire lawyers who pair their analytical skills with empathy in everyday matters.
4) The role of mentorship in her career:
Mentorship is very important, though honestly, I’ve grown so much from informal mentors. If you take the attitude that you can learn something from anyone with whom you form a natural connection and you keep those relationships, that’s your mentor network right there.
5) Describe your Werk style and do you have a “Go-To” beauty or grooming staple? (work fashion style)
My beauty routine consists of sleep at night and a good moisturizer with SPF by day.
6) What she does for self care:
I’ve taken up lindy hop dancing. It’s a fantastic diverse community where everyone shares a love for classic big band tunes and history. It’s also a good workout and guarantees a break from the screen.
7) The most worthwhile investment in the last 5 years:
I’ve written two young adult novels that have nothing to do with law. A lot of the writing happens on the weekend or at mini-residencies out in the woods or on a mountain, in the company of birds. I also use a 1963 typewriter which will outlast all my computers.
- The role of a lawyer is to advise on risk.
- The reaction when people find out you are a lawyer It varies! Once, someone said “you’re the enemy.” Another said “at least you’re not a dentist.” Most are more positive or neutral.
- In your quietest moments what are you most grateful for my family and friends. Also, nature. It’s an impressive planet.
- Expectation V Reality of a career in law since you left law school? Law school can create the perception that there’s a direct career path. In reality, careers are like clay that you mold with experience. The important thing is to be open minded and flexible while driving ahead. I started as a litigator working on patent and technology contract cases. Now a lot of my work focuses on privacy.
- Where and how can people find you online or even offline? LinkedIn and occasionally, Twitter.