It was a right place right time evening, specifically, being in New York City to attend a Women in Tech Meetup at WeWork in Dumbo. Thanks to Girls Develop It, to hosts Women in Tech and The Round for presenting a diverse, compelling and inspiring panel of entrepreneurs. The panelists shared their entrepreneurial experiences in tech as women of diverse cultures and backgrounds. Their focus and impact on bridging the technology gender gap is moving the needle for other women starting and growing their careers. This sold out event included the following panelists:
- Gesche Haas, founder of Dreamers // Doers
- Fereshteh Forough, Founder and CEO of Code to Inspire
- Jocelyn Miller, Product Manager, Consultant, JocelynMarie.Me/General Assembly
- Erin M. Kidwell, Director, Dev Bootcamp
Diversity and Women in Tech
Gesche Haas with a long career in finance and technology and has been featured on Bloomberg TV, Business Insider, Forbes, Fortune Magazine. Haas spoke at the sixtieth session of the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations. She’s the founder of Dreamers // Doers, an organization committed to:
increase the amount of successful ventures launched by women and to nurture the next generation of female thought leaders
“Women help more but benefit less“, a quote by Cheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant, sparked Haas to emphasize the message that “empathy fused with technology equals greater entrepreneurial benefits for women”. Her organization, Dreamers // Doers provides a launchpad for women supporting women as founders, working within the start up community, launching entrepreneurial careers – who in turn are committed to creating and inspiring change for women in tech.
Fereshteh Forough is CEO and founder of Code to Inspire, an organization dedicated to providing technical and professional training to women in Afghanistan. In 2015 Code to Inspire opened Afghanistan’s first coding school for women, located in Herat. Great care was taken to form strong bonds with the local community and establish a safe place for women to receive a technical education with professional opportunities and leadership training. After graduating, these Afghani women find placements working for remote employers and are paid in BitCoin. Removing the challenging of handling foreign currency, a local exchange was establish to convert BitCoin currency to their local currency.
Jocelyn Miller is a seasoned consultant for start ups and Fortune 500 companies and is a veteran of Amazon and Google. Miller specializes in product management, recruiting and developing the right teams, and forming innovative best practices that propel companies at all stages forward. She offered the audience insights on building a career in technology from pursuing the right job with the right company to striking out on your own. Miller is also an instructor at General Assembly delivering courses including Product Management, User Experience and Big Data.
Erin Kidwell, is Director of Dev Bootcamp and was the Program Manager at Code for America. It’s not just a love of code that drives Kidwell to help women gain access to training. Kidwell is driven by the socioeconomic opportunities available to women who learn to code, motivated with the drive to close the economic gap for women in tech. Kidwell is based out of New York City and welcomes those interested in training and supporting the coding community.
It might be the location, New York City, but the diversity of the panelists and their missions clearly shows how the scope of startups and technology game changers is not stuck in the white male world of Silicon Valley. We look forward to attending another event with Women in Tech NYC very soon.