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Home > News > HousingWorks Austin Board Member Parisa Fatehi-Weeks – COMMITTED TO SOCIAL EQUITY

Parisa Fatehi-Weeks

What position do you hold, besides being a HousingWorks Austin board member?

  • I serve as President of the Workers Defense Project Board of Directors and as Head of Equity, Inclusion and Community Impact for Google Fiber. I’m also a mom to two young girls, Roxana and Farah.

 Where did you grow up and attend school?

  • I grew up in Austin. My family and I moved from Iran to the U.S. so that my dad could get his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. I grew up on campus, spending many childhood summer days at the Perry-Castaneda Library where my mom worked before she went back to school and later taught at Huston-Tillotson University. I’ll never forget watching my parents navigate a new country, learning a new language and culture, building new friendships and careers, all while raising young children.

  • I attended UT-Austin, where I was a Plan II major and studied government. After working in Washington, D.C. for a couple of years, I returned home to Austin to attend UT Law and the LBJ School of Public Affairs. So, yes, I bleed burnt orange.

What are your major career accomplishments?

  • My journey has been filled with humbling moments, but even more people and opportunities that have inspired me. As an undergraduate at UT, I was elected student government president — a full circle moment for my immigrant parents who had raised their kids on campus. Upon graduating from law school, I clerked for U.S. District Judge Vanessa Gilmore in Houston, where I had the opportunity to work on a wide range of cases, including jury trials, and on civil rights and criminal law matters.

  • I then joined the Metropolitan Equity practice at Public Advocates, a nonprofit civil rights law firm in San Francisco — first as an Equal Justice Works Fellow and then as staff attorney. There, I drove statewide advocacy and coalitions to define and integrate social equity into California’s climate change policies so that state, regional, and local policy reforms addressed the most vulnerable residents’ needs, advanced environmental justice, and generated more affordable housing and public transit. I’m particularly proud of co-founding and convening the 6 Wins Network, the community power our coalition built in partnership with grassroots organizations across California, and the more sustainable and equitable approaches we drove in regional planning processes.

  • As Head of Equity, Inclusion and Community Impact for Google Fiber, I lead the company’s strategy to drive equity and inclusion throughout the communities we serve, our internal operations, and our business model. I manage the team of Government and Community Affairs Managers (GCAMs) who lead the municipal government engagement and community impact partnerships in Google Fiber cities across the U.S., where we make product and financial investments to increase digital equity. Here in Austin, I partnered with the Housing Authority of the City of Austin, Austin Free-Net, Austin Community College, and others to connect public housing residents to Google Fiber internet, digital literacy education, and refurbished devices at no cost– a program model that has since been replicated across the U.S.

 What are some interests of yours not related to your work or HousingWorks?

  • In regular times, I love enjoying live music in the sunny outdoors. In pandemic times, I am grateful for the extra time I am getting with my children and their pod mates during at-home school and play.

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