Giving her time and energy to local and national nonprofits, while helping Microsoft navigate massive changes in the role technology plays in our business, public and private lives, has been important to Mary Snapp for much of her life. That’s in part what makes Snapp, a corporate vice president, a natural fit for the job as head of the newly announced Microsoft Philanthropies.
Snapp may be the first head of Microsoft Philanthropies, but this isn’t her first time leading Microsoft in a new direction. “I joined Microsoft in 1988 as Microsoft’s first female attorney,” she says.
Microsoft Philanthropies, Snapp says, will “help bring to life the company’s mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.”
The Microsoft Philanthropies team “will look to invest the company’s strongest assets – technology, money, employee talent, and the company’s voice – to partner with nonprofits and communities to create lasting positive impact,” she says.
Snapp will lead Microsoft’s legacy in philanthropic initiatives to a higher set of ambitions and commitment. In the most recent fiscal year, Microsoft’s total annual giving surpassed $1 billion, with cash donations of nearly $120 million and in-kind donations worth nearly $950 million.
In her new role, Snapp will report directly to Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith.
In the 27 years Snapp has worked for Microsoft, she has led the legal work for business development, strategic partnership, developer relationships and business strategy teams, she says. For many years, she says, she’s also led the Products & Services Group, which provides legal support to Microsoft’s engineering, marketing and research divisions.
Since 2002, Snapp has also served as executive sponsor of Corporate External Legal Affairs’ diversity and inclusion efforts, “overseeing the development of the department’s diversity and inclusion strategy and execution,” she says. It has been a gratifying role.
Snapp is also the executive sponsor of the Women@Microsoft employee resources group, and is a frequent public speaker on issues related to her role at Microsoft.
Over the years, Snapp has also been active on the boards of directors in human services and arts non-profit organizations nationally and in the Puget Sound region.
Ask her to name some of them, and it’s quite a list: Snapp is past chair of the board of directors of Minority Corporate Counsel Association. She currently serves on the board of directors for KCTS 9 Public Television, the YWCA of Seattle, King, and Snohomish County, and is a board member, and past chair, of ArtsFund.