At the end of Apple’s keynote yesterday morning at WWDC, Tim Cook surprised attendees and announced that former first lady Michelle Obama would make an appearance at the developer conference. Earlier today, Michelle Obama, Cook, and Apple VP Lisa Jackson took the stage to discuss a wide range of topics, including empowerment, diversity in technology, and more.
Sylvania HomeKit Light Strip
While the event was closed to the press and not live streamed, the developers in attendance shared a handful of notable quotes and images on social media. While much of the fireside chat was between Jackson and Obama, Tim Cook briefly joined the two on stage for opening remarks. The Apple CEO quipped that “When you’re first lady, you can focus on whatever you want. Or perhaps nothing you want,” seemingly taking slight at the current Trump Administration.
From there, Cook headed to his front row seat and Jackson and Obama talked topics such as life after exiting the White House, empowerment, and more.
“Take some time to know yourself. Start with your values and a higher purpose. They give you a foundation when fear comes,” Obama said. “Conquering fear depends on surrounding yourself with good, trustworthy people you can rely on.”
When asked about diversity in technology, Obama explained that both diversity and starting people young are important for the tech industry.
“Women are in charge of everything. Who do you think is gonna use these apps. If you don’t have women at the table, you’re gonna miss out on my dollar because you don’t know me,” Obama said.
“You cannot wait until somebody is 20 or 30 and say we need you in the tech field. It’s too late. Make room for these young people to start being those problem solvers.”
The conversation then turned to climate change – a hot topic over the last week due to Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate pact. “We need people who believe that global warming is real,” Obama said.
Last but not least, Obama left the developers in the audience with some words of advice: “Develop your app with an air of integrity and passion. If we do that we’ll be good.”
View some tweets and images from the event below: