One of the many joys of my career as a champion for women in tech is the fact that I get to interview so many amazing people. It is true that just one person can make a difference.
On my Tech Savvy Women YouTube Channel, I have a podcast listing entitled:
Women in STEM: Inspiring Interviews & Actionable Advice
This playlist includes 62 interviews with women across a variety of STEM industries that have amazing stories. For example, my interview with Jasmine S. Dennis, who is a millennial expert, speaker, trainer, certification exam writer, and consultant. One of her gifts is creating strategies and solutions to address multi-generational challenges for organizations around the world.
Celebrate Women in Tech
It is important that we recognize those women in tech who are leading the path and paving the way for others behind them. Check out the 2019 listing of Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Tech.
It is also important to recognize and learn more about the stories of the women who started it all.
Let’s join in the celebration of women in tech – starting with the very first!
Ada Lovelace – First Woman in Tech
Each year on the 2nd Tuesday of October, we celebrate women in tech on Ada Lovelace Day. Not sure who Ada is? She was the very first woman in tech!
In 1843 at the age of 28, she developed the first computer program. Ada Lovelace was a skilled mathematician who’s credited with writing the first computer programs back in 1843 – well before computers actually existed. According to a Tech Insurance article, Ada published a scientific paper in collaboration with Charles Babbage (known today as the father of the computer) on his Analytical Engine. While the machine was never built, the paper written by Ada included what is now recognized as the first computer programs
We take a moment to celebrate women in tech for their accomplishments but also for their willingness to continue to fly in the face of stats that leave them in the minority. Although more women are in the workforce and graduate from college than men, they are still in the minority when it comes to tech careers.
Celebrating Women in Tech
Information Week offers up eight more women in tech that we should be aware of; pioneers in the industry who have made a significant impact on technology:
Sister Mary Kenneth Keller
Mary Kenneth Keller was the first woman in the US to receive a PhD. in computer science. Sister Keller’s academic career brought her to DePaul University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in mathematics and, later, master’s degrees in both mathematics and physics. In 1965 she earned her PhD. in computer science from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where she wrote a dissertation on creating algorithms to perform analytic differentiation on algebraic expression.
Erna Schneider Hoover
Erna Schneider Hoover was the brains behind the electronic telephone switching system and one of the first software patent holders in tech history. Hoover worked at Bell Laboratories, where she worked on control programs for the radar in its Safeguard Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense System and was the first woman to be named a technical supervisor.
Grace Hopper, a pioneer in computer programming, worked on the Mark I computer while serving with the US Navy in World War II. During her time at Harvard, Hopper worked on the Mark II and Mark III computers before transferring to work in private corporations and managing the programming development for the UNIVAC I and II. The compiler, known as FLOW-MATIC, was designed to translate languages that could be used for business purposes.
There are lessons to be learned from these amazing women and those today who are leading the way for other women in tech. Some of the support comes from surprising places.
Actress and comedienne Amy Poehler is a supporter of girls and women in tech. In a recent article that highlights five lessons that we can all learn from famous women in tech, we discover that she founded Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls organization with producer Meredith Walker to help young people emphasize their intelligence and imagination instead of clamoring to “fit in”.
Back to You
Tech is not a white male only field. Diversity helps bring new perspectives, new experience, new approaches to old problems and will help us create unimaginable greatness for the world. Join me as we celebrate the possibilities!
- Is There an Age Limit for Women in Tech?
- Women in Tech: Ask a Man for Advice
- Impactful Work Vs. Climbing the Ladder
JJ DiGeronimo — the president of Tech Savvy Women — is a speaker, author, and thought leader for women in tech and girls and STEM. Through her work, JJ empowers professional women and consults with senior executives on strategies to retain and attract women in technology to increase thought and leadership diversity within organizations.
Don’t miss our online resources library for eCourses, online discussions, downloads, retreats and tools for professional women. Learn more here.