Apple's Tim Cook Declares He's Gay: 5 LGBT Business Leaders You Should Know

Apple CEO Tim Cook has made it to the top of the news section by proclaiming officially that he's gay and that he's "proud to be gay." The Apple heavyweight confirmed that he is gay in an opinion piece that was published Thursday, making him the highest-profile chief executive to come out in recent times.

"While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven't publicly acknowledged it either, until now," Cook wrote. "So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me."

Apple's Tim Cook Declares He's Gay: 5 Top LGBT Business Leaders

Being straight or being gay isn't really a matter of concern for most people in a modern society. Each individual, irrespective of everything, has the right to determine his or her own sexual orientation. However, Cook isn't the first high profile figure to come out in the open.

Here's a look at the top 5 business leaders who belong to the LGBT community.

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Antonio Simoes is the Chief executive of HSBC UK. He is a Portuguese banking executive and has held his position in HSBC since November 2012. OUTstanding in Business together with the Financial Times nominated him as the most inspiring LGBT senior business executive in October 2013.

Google's Vice president of marketing Arjan Dijk is also among the LGBT community. Arjan Dijk joined Google in September 2008 and is Google's Vice President of Small Business Marketing. His main responsibility and passion is to help small businesses across the world to get on-line and be more successful on-line.

Claudia Brind-Woody IBM, Vice-president & managing director, global intellectual property licensing, is also one of the most prominent faces in the LGBT community. Claudia Brind-Woody is a vice president at IBM and a board member of Out & Equal - the organization which campaigns for workplace equality in the US.

Anthony Watson is Nike's Global chief information officer. Back in February, Nike, Inc. announced that the company would bring on the world's only openly gay CIO at a Fortune 100 company. Research that time even showed that gay men are highly adaptive, intuitive communicators and are great creative at problem solving.

Josh Graff is LinkedIn's Senior director of marketing solutions, EMEA. He joined LinkedIn in 2011 and is responsible for leading the growth of LinkedIn´s Marketing Solutions (advertising) business across the EMEA region, helping marketers to identify, target and engage with the world's most influential professionals.

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