Portfolio Employees Sharing at Largest Gathering of Women Technologists

We are honored to have five portfolio employees selected to speak at this year's Grace Hopper Conference (GHC).

Article by
Tatum Lynch

The Grace Hopper Conference (GHC), the largest gathering of women technologists, is a flagship event that brings approximately 30 speakers and 30,000 attendees together to highlight the contributions of women in tech. We are honored to have five portfolio employees selected to speaking at this year's conference.

High Alpha's Technical Recruiter Ashley Blevins, Tenon's UI Developer Jillian Howell, Pillar's Sr. Software Engineer Callie Riggs, Castiron's Jr. Software Engineer Lindsay Lopez, and The Engineered Innovation Group's Sr. Director of Data Science Charlene Tay are going to Orlando, FL to dive deeper into Startup Careers: Opportunities and Challenges for Growth. Their goal is to unfold how technical careers in early-stage startups can impact personal and professional growth.

"Most of the speakers at GHC bring a corporate perspective. We wanted to embrace this as an opportunity to share our stories and help people understand the career growth they can have in startups," said High Alpha's Director of Talent, Hope Williams. "When I'm interviewing potential candidates for our portfolio companies, most of them have never considered working in a startup. It's a really good opportunity to have an impact at every level of the business and get exposure to seasoned leaders," said Ashley.

The panelists are very excited to share their perspectives about growing both as a female professional in a startup and as a female in tech.

"As someone from a non-traditional background, it's important to me to share my insights with people who may come from similar situations. I didn't have someone to guide me through my journey, and I want to reassure them that their contribution is valuable," said Callie. Lindsay quickly empathized, "As a woman of color, representation matters to me. It is empowering to have other women in your corner, and I'm excited to meet so many amazing women at this conference."

The ladies were also very appreciative of how this opportunity is giving them a platform to tell their stories. "After living through some severe health challenges and a career change, I know my story can be an inspiration. I always wanted to reach people with my story, but I didn’t really know how to do it. This opportunity is the best way for me to tell many women that anything is possible if you put your mind to it," said Jillian.

After their panel, the ladies will have many opportunities to network and learn from other women leaders in tech—allowing them to serve as examples to the students in the crowd and learn how to become better mentors. "I attended GHC in graduate school, and it made a huge impact on my career. Being in a space with so many other women in tech is not something you typically see in school or work. Having that experience was amazing, and I was fortunate to leave the conference with many friends and mentors. I'm excited to pay it forward," said Charlene. Jillian agreed and said, "I'm really interested in learning how to become a better leader. I'm excited to learn how to be more assertive as a woman and have the camaraderie of like-minded women eager to advance their careers."

We are very proud of these five ladies for speaking at the Grace Hopper Conference. They are very deserving of this honor, and we are fortunate to have them as dedicated leaders in our portfolio and the tech ecosystem.

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