Rowe Lapiña Hoffer is the Sr. Executive Assistant to Mozilla’s co-founder and Chairwoman, Mitchell Baker.

Rowe Hoffer Leader Assistant

In this episode, Rowe talks about seeing our role as assistants as important and vital to our organizations, the importance of boundaries, and having the humility to help where needed versus having a sense of entitlement. We also talk about the title “assistant” and what it means to us.

NOTE: The following is an excerpt from my book includes a snippet from an essay I sent Rowe that she refers to in our conversation.

Serve the Work

Dorothy Sayers, an English crime writer and poet, wrote an essay called “Why Work?” I find her ideas in this essay fascinating to think about as they relate to how we can be confident in our role. In “Why Work?” Sayers says a worker must “serve the work.” This sounds like a recipe for burnout, but hear her out:

“The moment you think of serving other people, you begin to have a notion that other people owe you something for your pains; you begin to think that you have a claim on the community. You will begin to bargain for reward, to angle for applause, and to harbor a grievance if you are not appreciated. But if your mind is set upon serving the work, then you know you have nothing to look for; the only reward the work can give you is the satisfaction of beholding its perfection. The work takes all and gives nothing but itself; and to serve the work is a labor of pure love.… It is the work that serves the community; the business of the worker is to serve the work.”


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Leadership is not always found in the loudest voice, in front of the biggest and most receptive crowd. A leader, whose intent is pure and authentic, can move a crowd and a single person with a whisper.


Rowe Hoffer Leader Assistant Podcast

Rowe Lapiña Hoffer is the Sr. Executive Assistant to Mozilla’s co-founder and Chairwoman, Mitchell Baker. 

The Mozilla Foundation focuses on fueling the movement for a healthy and open internet. The Foundation is also the sole shareholder in the Mozilla Corporation, the maker of Firefox and other open source tools.

Rowe is responsible for keeping the Office of the Chair organized and moving forward with efficiency. In addition to her role in the Office of the Chair, Rowe is an integral leader in the sourcing, recruiting, hiring, and on-boarding of Administrative and Executive Assistants across the organization. She also serves as a Culture Ambassador for Mozilla, fostering a positive work environment that attracts and retains top talent. 

Before landing on the tech runway, Rowe worked in the fashion industry, where she cultivated her interests in arts, theatre, design, and style. 

Prior to joining Mozilla in 2011, Rowe honed her business acumen and strong communications skills at The Computer History Museum, NetApp, Hyperion Solutions, Arbor Software, SeeCommerce, and Decision Focus Inc. 

Today, outside of Mozilla, Rowe is also an entrepreneur. She and her husband founded and run MichRoFit, a fitness company specializing in functional training and athletic coaching. In 2017, Rowe created Vitamin D(ance)® and she continues to teach her all-original choreographed routines to people of all ages who share her passion.

Rowe has identical twin girls in middle school who Rowe describes as “extremely funny in a sarcastic, dark-humored way.”


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