OpenAI Trust and Safety Head Resigns to Spend More Time with Family

Dave Willner with his family

Dave Willner, the head of trust and safety at OpenAI, the leading AI research company, announced on Thursday that he is leaving his executive role to have more family time. He said on LinkedIn that he chose to focus on his work-life balance instead of his “super intense job”.

Willner became part of OpenAI in February 2022 and led the trust and safety team that looks after the ethical and social effects of the company’s AI products and services. He said his role had “grown a lot in its size and importance” since the launch of ChatGPT, the popular AI chatbot that can make realistic text conversations, in November 2022.

“OpenAI has a lot of work to do right now — and so do our children,” Willner stated.” I think many people with young children and a very demanding job can understand that conflict, and these last few months have made it very clear to me that One of them was my only option.”

Willner said he would make some fun cards for his wife and fellow trust and safety expert, Charlotte Willner, that read “Charlotte’s Official Cheerleader”. He also shared his plans to help his kids learn how to swim and bike this summer.

He also said he will become an advisor at OpenAI and help the company find a new leader for the trust and safety team. He praised OpenAI’s goal of making good and general artificial intelligence for humanity and said he was happy with his work at the company.

“I’m very thankful for my time at OpenAI, for the chance to work on some of the most important problems facing humanity today, and for the opportunity to work with, he penned that they were among the most brilliant individuals he had ever encountered.

Willner’s decision is part of a growing trend among executives who are rethinking their relationship with work, leading some to quit their roles in search of a healthier work-life balance. The pandemic was hard on many executives, as a Korn Ferry survey showed. Many individuals admitted to experiencing fatigue, and a handful even revealed their intention to quit their jobs by year’s end.

Willner’s announcement got support from his fellow tech professionals in the comments section of his LinkedIn post. Many thanked him for being honest and brave about his changing priorities and said they respected his choice to put his family first.

“Thank you for being honest about the need to balance family and work!” “In a remark, Vaishnavi J, the chief of young people’s policy at Meta, penned.”

 “We need more of this, especially from husbands/dads.”

OpenAI is a great AI company. Many famous and rich people like Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Reid Hoffman, and Microsoft give money to it. The company does amazing work on making computers understand words, see things, learn from mistakes, and make new things.

The company also has to answer many questions from people who make laws, check rules, and care about the people. They want to know if the company’s AI systems are safe and fair. In March 2023, OpenAI’s boss Sam Altman talked to a group of senators about AI rules. He shared his worries that AI could do harm by lying, spreading false information, and hacking into systems.

OpenAI also recently joined seven other top AI companies in making voluntary promises agreed to by the White House meant to make AI systems safer and more trustworthy. Before launching new AI systems to the public, they will be examined by external specialists and any content produced by AI will be distinctly labeled.

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