a man smiling with the ocean behind him

“I came across a piece of testimony and thought, ‘Well, that’s not what I expected!'”

As a teenager in small village, Sergio Matos never imagined how another person’s story would shape his own.

A man smilingI come from a small village, and when I was 17, I bought a magazine that featured Microsoft as one of the best companies to work for. And I remember reading it and thinking, “Oh, I’ll never get there.”

But I did! And when I started at the company, I was overwhelmed with the amount of internal information about the culture, volunteer programs, and emphasis on diversity and inclusion. I came across a piece of testimony from a person who began their gender transition while working at Microsoft, and I thought, “Well, that’s not what I expected!”

Because of that employee’s story, I felt support from Microsoft’s culture and decided it was time for me to come out. Had I worked at another company, maybe I wouldn’t have done it yet, but Microsoft was different.

This past year, Microsoft was the first company to have a float in Lisbon’s Pride parade, an effort I helped lead. Our LGBTQI+ employee chapter now has around 30 members, and we hope many more to come!—Sergio Matos, from Santiago do Cacém, Portugal

a photo of a woman laying down on her surfboard in the ocean waves

“These are the lessons my mother and father passed on to me—to help others feel valued and loved.”

Rita Picarra watched her parents dedicate their life’s work to making sure everyone felt supported, included, and seen—a legacy that she carries forward with responsibility and pride.
A woman in a woman smiling as she stands in front of a kitchen sink

“I’ve gotten to know my coworkers better through what is meaningful to them.”

Roxie Sieu Stark combines a few of our favorite things: cookies, breakfast, and a good cause. Watch her make breakfast-shaped sugar cookies.
A man stands holding a snowboard while wearing snowboarding gear

“Snowboarding has taught me that we won’t get anywhere if we don’t do it together.”

Sebastian Apud built strength through snowboarding but never felt like he quite fit in. That's why he's dedicated to introducing teens—who might not have access—to the sport he loves.
A woman smiles at her son while they play a puzzle

“I thought that if I wanted to raise a family, I couldn’t be a working mom.”

Brittany Valdes struggled to find her place between two sometimes conflicting identities: motherhood and professional life. Now, she’s rewriting the narrative about working mothers.