• kathelinejeanpierre

MAKE ROOM(?) FOR WOMEN IN TECH (part 1)


I can tell you: it really takes something to be a women in tech... a Black person and a Black women in tech. It takes everything. Everything you've got.


“Make more room for women in tech.” -Michelle Obama

Former First Lady Michelle Obama suggested that we "Make more room for women in tech." Current situation shows that it will be hard to succeed as we are building on top of a broken foundation of prevalent sexism and racism. We will need to break things. Hit hard. Destroy some of the foundations first, then build on new foundational principles. The reality is that even if we get more women in tech in our current conditions, they will likely run away seeking greener pastures.

I have been in the Valley for 4 years and every week I wonder “Where am I going next? Should I stay.”


As a French Canadian Black women in the Valley, I can tell you: it really takes something to be a women in tech... a Black person and a Black women in tech. It takes everything. Everything you've got.

Systemic sexism and racism are everywhere. The mythical technology & innovation hub “Silicon Valley” is hearing women’s voices loud and clear. Will companies and individuals have the will to carry on with the necessary transformation? Same for the race challenge by the way.

Let’s look in different places.


#1 The Tech Media:the only black women (and the only Black “lead” role) in HBO’s Silicon Valley is a stripper called Mochachino. “Mocha” just in case you didn’t see the color of her skin, it is mocha. “Chino” because in Silicon Valley we drink a lot of coffee. For those of you who don't remember Mocchacino - see her below - Silicon Valley Season 1 - Trailer.



“Writers about Silicon Valley, you DO NOT make me proud...”

Silicon Valley HBO Diversity


Who are these black leaders in Tech?


There are thousands of black leaders in tech - believe it or not. In case you don't know them, here are a few:


A few High Profile Blacks in Tech:

  • Stacey Brown-Philpot, CEO of TaskRabbit

  • Tristan Walker, Founder, Walker and Company Brands

  • Kimberly Bryant, Founder of Black Girls Code

  • Wayne Sutton, Co-founder of Change Catalys

  • Rodney Williams, Founder of Lisnr

  • Frederick Hutson, Founder of Pigeonly

  • Jessica Matthews, Co-Founder of Uncharted Powerl

  • Edwin Broni-Mensah, Founder of Give Me Tap

  • David Drummond, Chief Legal Officer for Alphabet Inc. Google



High profiles - focused in the Bay Area:

  • Clayton Bryan — Venture Partner, 500 Startups

  • David ibnAle — Founder & Managing Partner, Advance Venture Partners

  • Chris Lyons — Chief of Staff, Andreessen Horowitz

  • Ken Coleman — Special Advisor, Andreessen Horowitz

  • LJ Erwin — Partner, Andreessen Horowitz

  • Naithan Jones — Partner, Andreessen Horowitz

  • Kamil Saeid — Investor, Aspect Ventures

  • Lindsay Lee — Managing Partner, Authentic Ventures

  • Jamison Hill — Principal, Bain Capital Ventures

  • Erik Moore — Managing Director, Base Ventures

  • Kirby Harris — Partner, Base Ventures

  • Obi Ugwanali — Cofounder & Managing Partner, Black Angel Tech Fund

  • Ken Grimes — Managing Director, Black Angel Tech Fund

  • Kwame Anku — Cofounder & Principal, Black Angel Tech Fund

  • Marc Mitchell — Cofounder & Senior Advisor, Black Angel Tech Fund

  • Ron Berry — Founding Principal, Black Angel Tech Fund

  • Vincent Diallo — Partner, Bleu Capital

  • Stephen DeBerry — Founder & Managing Partner, Bronze Investments

  • Marlon Nichols — General Partner, Cross Culture Ventures

  • Rashad Drakeford — Marketer in Residence, Cross Culture Ventures

  • Trevor Thomas-Uribe — Partner, Cross Culture Ventures

  • Troy Carter — General Partner, Cross Culture Ventures

  • Nicholas Pianim — Managing Director, DAG Ventures

  • Kevin Durant — Founder, Durant Company

  • Eghosa Omoigui — Managing Partner, EchoVC Partners

  • Javaughn Lawrence — Investor, Eniac Ventures

  • Abdul Ly — Special Projects, First Round Capital

  • KJ Sidberry — Investor, Forerunner Ventures

  • Darryl Finkton — Managing Partner, FundRx

  • Ralph Taylor-Smith — Managing Director, GE Ventures

  • Brian Hollins — Growth Equity Investor, Goldman Sachs

  • Kwasi Ohene-Adu — VP of Engineering and Operating Partner, Goodwater Capital

  • Twum Djin — CTO, Goodwater Capital

  • Jason Towns — Managing Partner, Groundwork Ventures

  • Tyson Clark — Partner, GV

  • Mark Crawford — Investor, Intel Capital

  • Larry Cook — Finance Director, Intel Capital

  • Brian Dixon — Partner, Kapor Capital

  • Luke Thompson — Investor, Maschmeyer Group Ventures

  • Elliott Robinson — Partner, Microsoft Ventures

  • Michael Madison — Director-General & Founding Partner, Orogenesis

  • Earnest Sweat — Investor, PLD Ventures

  • Lo Toney — Partner, Plexo Capital

  • Charles Hudson — Managing Partner, Precursor Ventures

  • Frederik Groce — Analyst, Storm Ventures

  • Adrian Walker — Managing Partner, Telescopic Ventures

  • Garth Timoll, Sr. — Managing Director, Top Tier Capital Partners

  • Arthur Johnson — Managing Partner, TwilioFund

  • Anthony Heckman — EIR, XSeed Capital

  • Kobie Fuller — General Partner, Upfront Ventures

  • Michael Seibel — Partner, Y Combinator


High profiles in Los Angeles:

  • Troy Carter — Founder & CEO, Atom Factory

  • Vaughn Blake — Founder & Managing Partner, Autochrome

  • Walter Delph — Partner & Managing Director, BCG Digital Ventures

  • Kobe Bryant — General Partner, Bryant Stibel

  • Adam Demuyakor — Technology Investor, Fifth Wall Ventures

  • Brentt Baltimore — Investor (MBA Intern), Greycroft Partners

  • Ryan L. Smith — Director of Venture Capital & Private Equity, Magic Johnson Enterprises

  • Rashaun Williams — General Partner (The All-Star Fund), Manhattan Venture Partners

  • Austin Clements — Senior Associate, TenOneTen Ventures

  • Anthony Tucker — Principal, Troy Capital Partners

  • Hamet Watt — Venture Partner, Upfront Ventures

  • Anthony Saleh — Partner, WndrCo

  • Shane Kelly — Founder & Managing Partner — Wolverine Angels



Articles:

13 leaders aiming to increase African Americans in tech

28 black founders and investors making an impact in tech,

The 25 Most Influential African-Americans In Technology,

15 Black Startup Founders Making Great Strides in Tech,

The List of Black Women in VC,

The List of Black Men in VC


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