We go hard this Thursday.

 

“I will not let us get lost in the data algorithm.”

Nicole Williams, as I’ve come to know her, doesn’t mince words. She’s a straight shooter and holds decades worth of data in her brain. She was in the room as a black gay woman and technologist long before the conversations on representation became a field of study.

I arrived in Chicago right before rush hour took the streets. I met Nicole, who also lives in Charlotte, at the bar in my hotel before we headed down to the meet-and-greet in preparation for the State of the Black Ecosystem Conference which kicks off this evening.

In an awkward huddle around a cocktail table with complete strangers wishing to think through the nuances of “diversity”. Nicole was adamant, the quest, as she shared, was not simply to wait to be called on, but for our community to solve the room.

I’m excited to walk through some of these ideas and thinking as I host this evening’s affairs. Keep watch with hashtag #SBTE2017.

Onward.
Sherrell

 

GET INVOLVED
Sponsor an HBCU student to attend SXSW, the largest technology festival on the planet where they can join tech CEO’s, top suppliers, angel investors, professional athletes and beyond. Student applications are due January 31. Encourage a student in your life to attend.

 

 

 

 

The Lawyer Behind Facebook’s Turn to Africa

When the Democratic Republic of Congo shut down the internet during political protests last year, Ebele Okobi flew to Kinshasa to persuade the authorities of the importance of internet access. Also, she showed them how to use Facebook.
TAYLOR MAYOL | OZY
 

Chicago Is Getting $3.4M in Grants to Support Diversity in Tech

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the Blackstone Charitable Foundation and World Business Chicago announced a new program that will award $3.4 million in grants to organizations that recruit and support diverse entrepreneurs.

 

JIM DALLKE | CHICAGOINNO

 

 

 

Starbucks Nominates Rosalind Brewer and Other High Profile CEOs to Board of Directors

Rosalind Brewer will bring to the Board extensive insight on large-scale operations and supply chain logistics based on her senior leadership positions with Sam’s Club and Walmart, as well as valuable experience in consumer products and distribution.
STARBUCKS NEWSROOM

 

 

Fixing the Economic Divide that Plagues America

In the first post of a two-part series, Impact America Fund Founder Kesha Cash targets the current entrepreneurial ecosystem, outlining the issues that face entrepreneurs of color and discussing how fixing the system can help heal the economic divide in America.
KESHA CASH | LIVING CITIES

 

 

Vodacom Said to Weigh $1.1 Billion Stake Sale to Black Investors

The deal would help South Africa’s market leader in terms of mobile subscribers to comply with a government initiative to help compensate those discriminated against during apartheid.

 

 

 

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