Neuralink executive Shivon Zilis who had twins with Tesla CEO Elon Musk was conceived through in vitro fertilization (IVF), according to a report, Zilis, one of his senior employees at his brain chip company Neuralink, also reportedly told other colleagues that there was no romantic relationship between her and Musk.
The twins were born in November to Zills, a five-year Neuralink employee. Due to potential conflicts of interest, the company's policies prevent employees from establishing personal connections with anyone who has a more senior position. However, according to Reuters, the corporate management did accept Zilis' justification that her relationship with Musk was not romantic in nature.
Children Not Out of Love
Musk and Zilis quietly welcomed twins in November 2021. The news was kept under wraps for months, till it was revealed in July that Musk,51, has fathered two more children with Zilis, one of his high-ranking employees in Neuralink.
However, Zilis, 36, has told colleagues that she and the billionaire Tesla boss were never engaged in any sexual relationship or were ever involved romantically in any way, according to Reuters.
According to five people with knowledge of the matter, the Canadian-born executive who serves as Musk's head of operations and special projects at Neuralink has since disclosed to some of her coworkers that she conceived the children with the Tesla CEO through IVF.
Reuters was unable to verify Zilis' account as being accurate.
Although, the company's rules prohibit employees from having personal relationships with anyone that is in a more senior role due to potential conflicts of interest, the company accepted Zilis' version that her arrangement with Musk was non-romantic in nature, according to Reuters.
Hence, no action was taken against either Zilis and she was allowed to continue in her role as the director of operations in Neuralink.
Breaking Company Ethics
Zilis and Musk's twins were born weeks before Musk and musician Claire Boucher, aka Grimes, welcomed their second child through surrogate in December. Musk also had fathered twins and triplets with his ex-wife, Canadian author Justine Wilson; the current pair of twins are his second set.
Additionally, sources told Reuters that Zilis and Musk have kept up their collaboration in the months following the birth of the twins. Most recently, Musk sent Zilis to meet with Synchron CEO Thomas Oxley, a competitor of Neuralink.
According to Reuters, Musk, Zilis, and Oxley discussed the possibility of Neuralink investing in Synchron.
In April, Zilis and Musk petitioned a Texas court to allow the children to "have their father's last name and contain their mother's last name as part of their middle name," Business Insider reported.
A judge had also given approval for this. "Doing my best to help the underpopulation crisis," Musk quipped after Insider reported the birth of the twins.
Musk has also frequently spoken about dwindling birth rates and the danger they pose to humanity. Nine of his children were born to three separate mothers. "Far too many people are under the illusion that Earth is overpopulated, even though birth rate trends are so obviously headed to population collapse," Musk had tweeted in July.
Reuters spoke with corporate governance experts, and their opinions on whether Musk crossed ethical lines by having children with Zilis were mixed. Employees and the managers they report to are not allowed to have "personal ties" or "close personal friendships," according to Neuralink's own employment policy.
But the experts told Reuters that the deal between Musk and Zilis is rare.