Ruth Porat


Ruth Porat
Porat at breakout session on women's entrepreneurial leadership in 2016
Sale, Cheshire, England
CitizenshipUnited States[1]
Alma materStanford University (BA)
London School of Economics (MA)
University of Pennsylvania (MBA)
EmployerAlphabet, Google[2]
TitleChief financial officer (CFO)
Spouse(s)Anthony Paduano
RelativesMarc Porat (brother)

Ruth Porat (born 1958) is a British-American business executive, serving since 2015 as the chief financial officer (CFO) of Alphabet Inc. and its subsidiary Google.[3][4][5] Porat was CFO and executive vice president of Morgan Stanley, from January 2010 to May 2015[6]

In 2020, Porat was listed as the 16th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes,[5] and seventh on Fortune's Most Powerful Women list in 2020.[7]

Early life and education

Porat was born to a Jewish family[8] in Sale, Cheshire, England,[9] the daughter of Dr. Dan and Frieda Porat.[10][11] She moved at a young age to Cambridge, Massachusetts, where her father was a research fellow in the physics department at Harvard University. Her father three years later relocated the family to Palo Alto, California, where he worked at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory for 26 years.[12][13] Porat has a bachelor of arts degree in economics and international relations from Stanford University and holds a master's degree in industrial relations from London School of Economics and an MBA with distinction from Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.[14]


Morgan Stanley

Porat began her career at Morgan Stanley in 1987 and left in 1993 to follow Morgan Stanley president Robert F. Greenhill to Smith Barney[15] and returned to Morgan Stanley in 1996. Before becoming CFO, she served as vice chairman of investment banking from September 2003 to December 2009 and the global head of the Financial Institutions Group from September 2006 to December 2009. She was previously co-head of technology investment banking and worked for Morgan Stanley in London.[9] While a banker at Morgan Stanley, she was credited with creating the European debt financing that saved Amazon from collapse during the dot-com melt down in 2000.[16][17] Her financial partner during the Internet investment banking craze was Mary Meeker, the godmother to Porat's three children.[15]

During the financial crisis, Porat led the Morgan Stanley team advising the United States Department of the Treasury regarding Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the New York Federal Reserve Bank with respect to AIG.[18][19] In the 2011 HBO movie Too Big to Fail, Porat is played by Jennifer van Dyck.[20] In May 2011, she presented to the Bretton Woods Committee hosted by the International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C., on post-crisis reform and financial legislation, and to the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2013 on "trust" levels within and of the financial sector.[21][22][23]

In 2013, it was reported that President Barack Obama would nominate Porat as the next Deputy Secretary of the Treasury.[24] However, it was reported later by Bloomberg News and The New York Times that Porat had contacted White House officials to withdraw her name from consideration because of improving conditions at Morgan Stanley and the acrimonious confirmation process inflicted upon then Treasury Secretary-nominee Jack Lew.[25][26]

Porat's career was analyzed in the McKinsey & Company study "How Remarkable Women Lead".[27] She was named "Best Financial Institutions CFO" in a poll conducted by Institutional Investor for its "2014 All-America Executive Team".[28]


On March 24, 2015, it was announced that Porat would join Google as its new CFO as of May 26, 2015.[3] Bloomberg Business reported that her hiring deal amounted to $70 million.[29] She has been credited with boosting Google's share price by reorganizing the company and imposing financial discipline.[30] For the "2018 All America Executive Team", she was named "Best Internet CFO" by Institutional Investor.[31] Porat spoke at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit in Dana Point, California, on October 19, 2016, in her capacity as CFO of Alphabet Inc. and Google.[32] At Google, in addition to Finance, Porat also has Business Operations, "People Ops", Google's human resources function, Real Estate and Work Place Services reporting to her. She was paid $50 million in 2020,[33] $47 million in 2018, $688,000 in 2017, and $39 million in 2016[34]

Board membership

She is a member of the Board of Directors of Stanford University Management Company,[35] the University's endowment, the Board of Directors of The Council on Foreign Relations,[9] and a member of the Board of Directors of The Blackstone Group.[36] She previously served on the Board of Trustees of Stanford University,[37] the Borrowing Advisory Committee of the United States Treasury,[38] and the Board of Trustees of the Economic Club of New York.[39] She is a member of the Advisory Council of the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy at the Brookings Institution,[40] and the Economic Strategy Group at the Aspen Institute.

Political views

Porat supported Senator Hillary Clinton when she ran for president in 2008, hosting a fundraiser at her apartment in The Dakota in New York City,[41] and did the same in 2016.[42] In 2011, Porat expressed her support for increased taxes on the wealthy and declared on the topic of significant spending decreases that "we cannot cut our way to greatness".[43]

Personal life

Porat has been married to her husband, a partner in the law firm Paduano & Weintraub, since 1983.[10] Porat is a survivor of breast cancer.[44]

In September 2015, Porat reportedly paid $30 million for a house in Palo Alto.[13]


  1. ^ Forbes, Moira; Vuleta, Christina (4 December 2018). "The World's Most Powerful Women 2018". Forbes. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  2. ^ Rao, Leena. "One Year In, Ruth Porat Remains Google's Financial Disciplinarian". Fortune. Retrieved 9 September 2017.
  3. ^ a b McGrath, Maggie (March 24, 2015). "Google Lures CFO Ruth Porat From Morgan Stanley". Forbes.
  4. ^ Patricia Garcia. "Ruth Porat Is Google's First Female CFO: 10 Other Powerful Women in Tech". Vogue. Retrieved 2015-03-27.
  5. ^ a b "World's Most Powerful Women: Ruth Porat". Forbes.
  6. ^ Popper, Nathaniel; Dougherty, Conor (2015-03-24). "Google Hires Finance Chief Ruth Porat From Morgan Stanley (Published 2015)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-11-17.
  7. ^ "Most Powerful Women Summit 2018 | Fortune Conferences".
  8. ^ Shamah, David (2015-03-02). "New Google CFO Ruth Porat's family a mirror of American Jewry". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 2015-03-27.
  9. ^ a b c "Ruth Porat". Council on Foreign Relations.
  10. ^ a b "Ruth Porat Wed To Law Student". The New York Times. December 18, 1983.
  11. ^ Dr. Frieda Porat's obituary
  12. ^ "A Dossier on Morgan Stanley's New CFO Ruth Porat". The Wall Street Journal. December 8, 2009.
  13. ^ a b "The incredible rise of Ruth Porat, CFO at one of the most valuable companies in the world". Business Insider. Retrieved 2017-12-13.
  14. ^ "Ruth Porat to Join Google as Chief Financial Officer". Alphabet. March 24, 2015.
  15. ^ a b Craig, Suzanne (November 9, 2010). "Dealbook: A Female Wall St. Financial Chief Avoids Pitfalls That Stymied Others". The New York Times.
  16. ^ The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos And The Age Of Amazon, Little, Brown & Co., p. 101, (New York 2013)
  17. ^ "The Little-Known Deal That Saved Amazon From The Dot-Com Crash," Timothy B. Lee, Vox, (April 5, 2017)
  18. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross (2009). Too Big to Fail. Viking Press. pp. 372, 382. ISBN 978-0-670-02125-3.
  19. ^ "When Treasury Calls". The Deal. September 2008. Archived from the original on 2013-04-27.
  20. ^ Too Big To Fail at IMDb
  21. ^ "2011 Bretton Woods Annual Meeting: Risks to the Global System". The Bretton Woods Committee. May 2011.
  22. ^ "2013 Edelman Trust Barometer". Edelman. January 2013.
  23. ^ "Ruth Porat". World Economic Forum. December 2013.
  24. ^ "Obama Considering Morgan Stanley's Porat for Treasury Job". Bloomberg News. January 14, 2013.
  25. ^ "Morgan Stanley's Porat No Longer Interested in Treasury Post". Bloomberg News.
  26. ^ "Ruth Porat Withdraws Name From Deputy Treasury Race". The New York Times. March 28, 2013.
  27. ^ Barsh, Joanna; Cranston, Susie; Lewis, Geoffrey (2010). How Remarkable Women Lead: The Breakthrough Model for Work and Life. Crown Books. ISBN 978-0307461704.
  28. ^ "Details". Institutional Investor. Retrieved 2020-11-17.
  29. ^ Moore, Michael (March 26, 2015). "Google Agrees to Pay New CFO Ruth Porat $70 Million by 2016". Bloomberg Business.
  30. ^ "Google Makes So Much Money, It Never Had To Worry About Financial Discipline--Until Now". Bloomberg BusinessWeek, 8 December 2016.
  31. ^ Whyte, Amy (7 November 2017). "The 2018 All-America Executive Team: What Makes a Top CEO". Institutional Investor. Retrieved 2 December 2019.
  32. ^ Pressman, Aaron (27 October 2017). "Data Sheet—Amazon, Google, and Microsoft Have Plenty to Celebrate Right Now". Fortune. Retrieved 2 December 2019.
  33. ^ "Alphabet, Inc. 2021 Proxy Statement".
  34. ^ Page, Larry; Brin, Sergey; Hennessy, John L. (April 30, 2019). "ALPHABET INC Schedule 14A". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Retrieved Aug 31, 2019.
  35. ^ "Ruth Porat | SIEPR". Retrieved 2020-11-27.
  36. ^ Reuters Staff (2020-06-25). "UPDATE 1-Blackstone adds Alphabet CFO Ruth Porat to its board". Reuters. Retrieved 2020-09-21.
  37. ^ "Board of Trustees welcomes two new members who bring 'wisdom and expertise'". Stanford Report. Stanford University. August 17, 2010.
  38. ^ "Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee Members". US Department of the Treasury.
  39. ^ "Trustees and Officers". The Economic Club of New York. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved August 1, 2013..
  40. ^ "Advisory Council Announced: Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy at Brookings" (Press release). Brookings Institution. March 27, 2014.
  41. ^ "A Morning At The Dakota". The Washington Post. February 2008.
  42. ^ "Hillary tells celeb friends she could beat Trump in a 'landslide'". Retrieved 2020-11-27.
  43. ^ "Morgan Stanley CFO Ruth Porat: Raise Taxes On The Rich". The Huffington Post. December 2011.
  44. ^ Ruth Porat, Battling Cancer by Going to Work. Big Think. November 2010.