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Photo: Jaap Arriens / Getty Images

Uber has hired Pepsi executive Tony West as its new chief legal counsel, replacing Salle Yoo, the company said on Friday. In an email to employees, new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi emphasized West's recognition of focus on building diverse teams, an area the company has said is a new emphasis after a string of sexual harassment and discrimination controversies.

Who: West was previously EVP of government affairs, general counsel, and corporate secretary at Pepsi. Before that, West worked at the Department of Justice under President Obama.

Big task: It's no secret that Uber faces an ongoing list of legal challenges, including lawsuits, disputes with regulators, and most recently several criminal probes by the federal government. West's experience at the Department of Justice will surely be valuable to the company in regards to those. Uber currently has no plans to hire a general counsel to serve under West, the company said.

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
1 hour ago - Technology

Scoop: Google is investigating the actions of another top AI ethicist

Google CEO Sundar Pichai. Photo by Mateusz Wlodarczyk/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Google is investigating recent actions by Margaret Mitchell, who helps lead the company's ethical AI team, Axios has confirmed.

Why it matters: The probe follows the forced exit of Timnit Gebru, a prominent researcher also on the AI ethics team at Google whose ouster ignited a firestorm among Google employees.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Joe Biden's COVID-19 bubble

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The incoming administration is planning extraordinary steps to protect its most prized commodity, Joe Biden, including requiring daily employee COVID tests and N95 masks at all times, according to new guidance sent to some incoming employees Tuesday.

Why it matters: The president-elect is 78 years old and therefore a high risk for the virus and its worst effects, despite having received the vaccine. While President Trump's team was nonchalant about COVID protocols — leading to several super-spreader episodes — the new rules will apply to all White House aides in "high proximity to principals."

Justice Department drops insider trading inquiry against Sen. Richard Burr

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) walking through the Senate Subway in the U.S. Capitol in December 2020. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Department of Justice told Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) on Tuesday that it will not move forward with insider trading charges against him.

Why it matters: The decision, first reported by the New York Times, effectively ends the DOJ's investigation into the senator's stock sell-off that occurred after multiple lawmakers were briefed about the coronavirus' potential economic toll. Burr subsequently stepped down as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.