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GitHub Taps Former Yahoo Executive as VP of Product

In charge of the experience for some 10 million programmers.

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GitHub, the social repository site where software developers store and share their code, has named a former Yahoo executive as its VP for product management.

Kakul Srivastava, who was until earlier this year the chief product officer at WeWork, had spent a combined seven years and change at Yahoo, starting out as the general manager for its Flickr photo-sharing and -storage service.

She left Yahoo in 2011 and spent a little less than a year at Slack, the workplace messaging and collaboration company. Then in 2012 she launched Tomfoolery, an enterprise app development studio, with another ex-Yahoo and two ex-AOLers. Yahoo acquired it last year, and she stayed on for a few months as VP of product management.

There are some 10 million people using GitHub to collaborate on software code; it will be Srivastava’s job to keep them happy while also improving it, which implies change. That’s a tall order. “Our focus on developers and the core user experience will never change,” she said in an interview.

But what may change? She dropped a few hints: She’d like to develop and improve upon what she called “the core craft of writing code.”

“With so many using GitHub, there’s significant wisdom built in to all of that collaboration,” she said. “We want to use that to make the system better for programmers, but also to launch new things that haven’t existed before.”

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