Black Tech Week Announces 2022 Conference Calendar for Event in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI, OHBlack Tech Week, the inclusion focused tech ecosystem-building festival, announced the events schedule for its 2022 conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. The annual five-day event will run from July 18-22 and hold 60+ sessions—presenting 50+ tech influencers and minority innovation ecosystem builders as featured speakers.

Black Tech Week’s featured speakers include Kimberly Bryant, Founder of Black Girls Code, Arlan Hamilton, Founder of Hire Runner and Backstage Capital, Felecia Hatcher, CEO of Black Ambition, and Detavio Samuels, CEO of Revolt.

Black Tech Week’s events are presented with support from its committed sponsors including Amazon Web Services, The City of Cincinnati, Fifth Third Bank, Delta Dental of Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana, Ohio Third Frontier, Lincoln and Gilbert.

The completely re-branded, enhanced event creates meaningful opportunities for founders to connect with other founders, tech talent, educational programming and investors.

Lightship Foundation 

Black Tech Week’s keynotes, panels and sessions tap into the most relevant topics such as exits, IPOs and the current startup lifecycle, fundraising and navigating the venture landscape, and hiring for innovation amid the Great Resignation. Registrants can sign up for VC office hours with firms in attendance or participate in the pop-up Career Fair; through these offerings, Black Tech Week aims to serve as a real-time resource for organizations seeking to diversify their teams and for investors interested in cultivating more inclusive portfolios. Part of Black Tech Week’s programming will take place in the conference’s Activation Spaces—where Inc. Founder’s House, AWS, and Black@Genesis will run programming.

This year’s conference calendar is timed to coincide with the Cincinnati Music Festival, one of the oldest and largest in the country; the festival hosts 70,000+ visitors and generates 107 million dollars in economic impact.

Lightship Foundation, the Cincinnati-based economic development organization, acquired Black Tech Week with the vision of positioning Ohio as the most supportive state in the Midwest for minority innovation. Lightship Foundation, with Founder and CEO Candice Matthews Brackeen at its helm, is executing on its mission to leverage local corporate partners and community networks including the Cincinnati Innovation District (CID) to bring remarkable technology and venture leaders from all over the world to Ohio.

“For the last seven years, Black Tech Week has been hard at work, ecosystem-building for Black tech communities across the U.S.. Relocating to Cincinnati means expanding our national network of founders, talent, and investors.” said Candice Matthews Brackeen, Lightship Foundation Founder and CEO. “We’re so proud of our 2022 conference calendar—and the opportunity to bring this innovative session lineup to our community.”

“The city of Cincinnati is committed to becoming a place where Black entrepreneurs feel supported and seen,” says Aftab Pureval, Mayor of Cincinnati. “We are excited to host Black Tech Week and support Lightship in creating a hub for tech collaboration in the Midwest.”

To register for this year’s Black Tech Week in Cincinnati, to view the schedule and learn more about this year’s speakers, please click here.

About Lightship Foundation

Lightship Foundation is an impact-driven organization serving remarkable entrepreneurs & ecosystems. We leverage corporate partnerships, specialized programming, and capital investments to drive growth within the minority innovation economy. Since 2017, Lightship Foundation has guided over 200 companies led by women, FOC (Founders of Color), and those representing the LGBTIQ and disabled communities to more than $120M in venture funding across the US. Connect with Lightship Foundation via Linkedin or visit the Lightship Foundation website to learn more.

About Black Tech Week

Black Tech Week is an inclusion focused ecosystem-building festival that partners with founders, corporations and the community to create a valuable experience for investors, entrepreneurs, and techies of every kind. Connect with Black Tech Week on Facebook and Instagram, and visit the Black Tech Week website for more information.

Source and photos: Lightship Foundation


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TEDCO’s New Women Leadership Programs Empowering Maryland’s Entrepreneurs

COLUMBIA, MD—TEDCO, Maryland’s economic engine for technology companies, announced today the launch of its new Women Entrepreneur Leadership Programs. The new programs are designed to build an alliance of diverse founders and CEOs to strategically navigate Maryland’s entrepreneurial innovation ecosystem. In collaboration with Maryland’s four Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), TEDCO’s new programs will focus on creating a diversified community of women entrepreneurs and help them grow their companies.

“Using the input from TEDCO’s Task Force for Women Entrepreneurs to develop the course foundation, we were able to create a one-of-a-kind program focusing on mitigating challenges Black women entrepreneurs face,” Linda Singh, executive director for TEDCO’s Women Entrepreneur Leadership.

The leadership program kicks off with a pilot program in Howard County at the Maryland Innovation Center (MIC). The Open Institute for Black Women Entrepreneur Excellence will convene a cohort of 25 women entrepreneurs, with the goal of developing a network of peer advisors and creating a collaborative community. The HBCUs will determine the needs of these entrepreneurs at the intersection of research, tech transfer and education. Maryland’s HBCUs include Bowie State UniversityCoppin State UniversityMorgan State University, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore

“Recent numbers show the continued challenges faced by early-stage women entrepreneurs –2.3% of venture funding went to women in 2020, down from an all time high of 2.8% in 2019, yet 42% of all business are women owned,” said Troy LeMaile-Stovall, TEDCO CEO. “TEDCO recognizes the need to ensure all Marylanders, especially women, given that the state has the highest rate per capita of women-owned businesses, are provided the proper opportunities and exposure to realize their dreams. This pilot with our friends in Howard County represents our commitment to ensure our dreams become reality and access to wealth inclusion and expansion opportunities are realized.”

To be eligible for the cohort, applicants must be a founder, co-founder, or CEO whose company is at a minimum of pre-seed to growth stage and a maximum of pre-series A. Watch the webinar to find out more about the program by visiting https://youtu.be/LmUSLXU8Egc.

The new program builds on past work by TEDCO as it works to support women and underrepresented entrepreneurs. 

In 2016, TEDCO commissioned a study into the demographics of those start-ups applying for funding and support from TEDCO to try to identify underserved entrepreneurs. As a result of that study, TEDCO launched the Minority Business Pre-Seed Fund, which eventually became the Builder Fund for start-ups run by entrepreneurs who demonstrate economic disadvantage. 

In 2019, TEDCO went further by convening its Task Force for Women Entrepreneurs. The 12 thought leaders in the Maryland entrepreneurial ecosystem were tasked with identifying and implementing concrete actions to drive outcomes for women entrepreneurs in the state. The task force came to a close with the recommendation of implementing these programs into the state’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Learn more about the Women Entrepreneur Leadership Programs and view the request for applications by visiting the website at https://www.tedcomd.com/women-programs.

Source and photos: TEDCO


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Baltimore Tech Professionals to host annual Multicultural Minority Innovation Weekend

#HackingInnovation

BALTIMORE, MDMinority Innovation Weekend 2019 (MIW19) provides minorities launching new businesses an opportunity to connect with each other and gain exposure to investors. This weekend’s summit at the University of Baltimore’s Thumel Business Center is dedicated to aiding minority innovators launch tech-focused startups, exploring trending technologies, and showcasing tech startups that have a minority founder or co-founder.

This two-day conference is co-hosted by NSBEBMAC, the Baltimore Chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers Professionals, and SHPE, the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers Baltimore and Johns Hopkins Chapters.  The goal of this year’s event, named Minority Innovation Weekend (MIW), is to provide knowledge to enable individuals to turn their technology-based ideas or concepts into viable tech-startups and new corporations.

MIW-arch

“The early stages of entrepreneurship can be a particularly isolating time due the do-it-all nature and time constraints of starting a business,” said Sir Walter Richardson, the MIW 2019 coordinator. “Even when given the chance to engage the broader technical or entrepreneurial world, the demographics are such that minorities can still feel isolated.”

The MIW19 Host BDPA Chapter is BDPA Baltimore.  MIW19’s Media Sponsor is bdpatoday.  Register today for Minority Innovation Weekend 2019 at https://miw.eventbrite.com.

— Source, video, and photo credits: NSBE-BMAC

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Exclusive: National Basketball Players Association Announces First-Ever Tech Summit

NBA players’ union plays matchmaker with its athletes and Silicon Valley for more than beefing up portfolios

by KC Ifeanyi

NEW YORK, NY – The National Basketball Players Association announced today it will hold the inaugural NBPA Technology Summit from July 19-21 in San Francisco.

The NBPA Technology Summit will provide current and former NBA players with the following:

  • Educational content and presentations from executives of major media and technology companies;
  • Site visits to several media and technology companies in Silicon Valley;
  • Networking opportunities with senior executives and influencers;
  • Workshops designed to identify opportunities for players to pursue both during and after their NBA careers.

Among the participating companies are Andreessen Horowitz, Jawbone and SV Angel.

This three-day event in San Francisco that aims to integrate NBA players with tech and media companies for post-career opportunities beyond just backing them—a shift in thinking that’s found Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala (top photo) as a model student.

Code Once. Sell Many.

The NBPA Technology Summit will incorporate site visits to media and tech companies, as well as lectures, presentations, and workshops from executives and influencers. Jawbone, Pinterest, Andreessen Horowitz, and SV Angel are just a few companies on deck to help NBA players find their place in Silicon Valley—and one place the NBPA feels is particularly apt for athletes is wearable technology.  Read more

Sources:  NBPA and  FastCompany.com

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Under Armour launched UA Record during CES 2015, a health and fitness network for new wearable apps dedicated to helping users lead healthier lives.  Photo courtesy, Under Armour.
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