Statistics show that better than 50% of new entrepreneurs are female. Many business people are surprised to hear that there is a growing number (contrary to popular belief) of women getting into and making a very productive and rewarding career in Information Technology (IT). As a result, many women of varying ages and interests are taking the entrepreneurial plunge. In walks Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), headquartered at CU Boulder. Lucy is a Bell Fellow and points out (proves) there are many female entrepreneur success stories or as she and her team states it, they are “NCWIT Heroes”. If you have any interest in this burgeoning growth phase of Women and IT, check out the first in this series of amazing true-life stories.
The mission of the National Center for Women & Information Technology is to ensure that women are fully represented in the influential world of information technology and computing.
NCWIT's overarching goal is parity in the professional information technology (IT) workforce, and our fundamental strategy is to educate, disseminate, and advocate a national, multi-year implementation plan that generates tangible progress within 20 years.
Advocate Inducted Into Hall Of Fame
Lucy Sanders, who directs the National Center for Women and Information Technology on the CU-Boulder campus, has been inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame, considered one of the most prestigious recognitions for women working in technology and science.
Best Practices for Building a Successful Online Business "When you look at the web analytics, how many people come to your site, how they got there, so many people go to the search engines. A lot of my customers find that 30 to 75% of their business comes from search engines," says Lee Kennedy. Lee has worked with Brad Feld, been the CIO at Webroot Software and today is CEO/Founder of TriCalyx, a consulting business focused on helping people build an online business. 85% of the worldís online population, purchase online! And thatís up 40% over the past two years. And then for people in the 75K and higher income bracket itís more like 90+%. Even for people who donít buy online, they come online to research their purchases. With search engine optimization, thereís quite a mystique around SEO because itís not one of those things you can totally get your arms around. I'll try to demystify it. Basically itís figuring out how to get your web site [and the words people are searching to find your web site] ranked on the first page of Google. If you are selling on your site, there are so many ways to bring traffic to your site that really cost you nothing... Related Links:
Women in IT ||
Keywords: Lee Kennedy, Tricalyx, Search Engine Optimization,
Online Business, Bytes: 16982834 - 4/21/08
394_ Anousheh Ansari earned a place in history in 2006 as the fourth private explorer, the first woman private explorer, and the first astronaut of Iranian descent to visit space. Back on Earth, Anousheh returned to her job as co-founder and chairman of Prodea Systems, a company that hopes to dramatically alter and simplify consumers' digital living experience. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy discuss the path and the passion of Anousheh in her high-tech entrepreneurial journey. She loves to 'give birth' to new things and to help people. Anousheh immigrated to the United States as a teenager who did not speak English. She immersed herself in education. Prior to founding Prodea Systems, Anousheh served as co-founder, chief executive officer and chairman of the board for Telecom Technologies, inc. The company successfully merged with Sonus Networks, Inc., a provider of IP-based voice infrastructure products in a deal worth approximately $750M.LISTEN Related Links: Prodea Systems || Double Launch || || NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice|| NCWIT Channel|| Keywords: Anousheh Ansari, Prodea Systems, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes 10/15/07 > Bytes: 18973991 LISTEN
410_ They Would Hardly Ever Refer to Themselves as Gamers
Lucy Sanders, CEO and co-founder of the National Center for Women and Information Technology (NCWIT), which is based in CU-Boulder’s ATLAS Institute and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy, co-founder of Tricalyx discuss the topic of casual gaming with Margaret Wallace, Co-Founder and CEO of Rebel Monkey -- a New York-based game development studio focusing on casual games. Margaret went on to point out that there’s no question about it: casual games are hot. Once a cottage industry, casual games have become the fastest growing segment of the video game sector. The primary audience for casual games is typically comprised of mothers and grandmothers – and yet these people would hardly ever refer to themselves as gamers, despite untold hours spent playing. For many, casual games have become the primary way to relax and unwind – even taking the place of television. Here are some of the questions that are answered: Why don’t they think of themselves as gamers? What sets these players apart from more “traditional” gamers? How do they participate in game culture? What social relations are reinforced or weakened as a result of playing casual games? Finally, how do these play patterns and perceptions influence our work as content producers? Related Links: Rebel Monkey|| NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice || NCWIT Channel ||Keywords: Margaret Wallace, Rebel Monkey, Casual Games, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes, 11/12/07 Bytes: 24163372> LISTEN
380_ Super Success: Bubble Burst; Stronger than Ever
Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy discuss entrepreneurial success patterns with Marketta Silvera. Ms. Silvera is an accomplished visionary, entrepreneur and chief executive in voice technology, Internet and telecommunications industries. Since joining Apptera in 2005 as chief executive and board member, she has led the company to be the first provider of v-Business solutions (e-Business over the phone) that help enterprises increase revenues through ad-serving technologies, 1-to-1 marketing and personalized e-commerce over the phone channel. Previously as an entrepreneur and chairman/CEO Ms. Silvera founded the first network-based Internet security company, Pilot Network Services that developed patented technology to protect corporate networks against criminal hackers. She took the company public, and built it to a $1 billion market cap. LISTEN to this amazing story with important learning strategies. Related Links: Apptera || Relevant Ads for eBay || NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice || NCWIT Channel|| Keywords: Marketta Silvera, Apptera, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes > Bytes: 23103532 > 9/24/07 LISTEN
376_Entrepreneurial Necessities: Flexibility, Persistence, Passion
Don't do it just for the money, be passionate about solving a problem stresses Judy Estrin, President & CEO of Packet Design, a network technology company she co-founded in May 2000. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy discuss other entrepreneurial challenges with Judy and she said the one people don't like to hear is, "Be ready to fail". Prior to co-founding Packet Design Estrin was CTO for Cisco Systems. She served in various executive positions including being CEO of Precept Software from the company's 1995 founding as a maker of streaming video software until Cisco Systems acquired Precept in 1998, and she became Cisco's Chief Technology Officer until April 2000. Judy's parents were very influential in her career path and others like Vinton Cerf, who is commonly referred to as one of the "founding fathers of the Internet". Judy points out to young people that it's best to get experience before becoming the CEO. LISTEN Related Links: Packet Design || Business Week || NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice|| NCWIT Channel|| Keywords: Judy Estrin, Packet Design, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes >> Channels: NCWIT> Bytes: 26503944> 9/17/07 LISTEN
339_ Mother of Two Raises $20 Million from Investors Sangita Verma co-founded TAG Networks in May 2003. In her role as CEO, she has secured $20M from private equity investors, established exclusive content agreements with leading game suppliers and global brands, and has filed eight patents covering key proprietary technologies for delivering interactive content under the TAG brand. Sangita is a mother of two as well as strategic planner, veteran marketer and business visionary, Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) discusses the challenges, choices and decisions she made during thr time leading to Ms. Verma extensive experience in the video game industry. She is an NCWIT Hero.
"Investing in research and education is critical. So is investing in a more diverse workforce. Support for the National Center for Women & Information Technology is key to encouraging young women to study computing and empowering women to play a central role in the technology workforce."
Chairman and Chief Software Architect,
NOTE: We are deeply saddened by Jeanette's tragic death in a small plane crash on Friday, February 1, 2008. She was a true technology pioneer and we hope her life will continue to inspire others.
For Jeanette Symons, motherhood proved to be good for business. Her kids helped her come up with
the idea for her award-winning social networking site, imbee.com.
Going from Chief Technology Officer
Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy talked to Jeanette Symons is the founder, CEO of Industrious Kid, and mother of two. ut she doesn't stop there. Prior to founding Industrious Kid, Jeanette co-founded Zhone Technologies, a telecommunications company that builds "last mile" access solutions, where she served as the company's Chief Technology Officer and Vice President, Engineering. Prior to Zhone, Ms. Symons was Chief Technical Officer and Executive Vice President of Ascend Communications, Inc., which Ms. Symons co-founded, from January 1989 until June 1999 when the company was purchased by Lucent Technologies. In addition, Jeanette was a software engineer at Hayes Microcomputer, a modem manufacturer, where she developed and managed its ISDN program. How does she do it? She has a number of suggestions for success but for Jeanette Symons, motherhood has proved to be good for business. Her kids helped her come up with the idea for her award-winning social networking site, imbee.com. LISTEN
362_ Heidi Roizen : Living in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Heidi Roizen has spent her entire life in the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Silicon Valley, first as an entrepreneur and ultimately as a venture capitalist helping other entrepreneurs build the great companies of tomorrow. She is currently a Managing Director of Mobius Venture Capital, a venture fund with over $2 billion under management. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy with Larry Nelson, co-founder of w3w3.com explore the 'legend behind the lady entrepreneur'. They got some great advice for all who want to build a substantial company. Heidi's father continues to be influential in her thoughts and actions. Heidi's definition of common sense networking is an understanding of what to give in return and to ask for help when it is appropriate. Her long-time friendship with Bill and Melinda Gates is very inspiring and explains why she considers passion, tenacity and learning new things key to building the future. A day before this interview, Heidi funded a new company...there will be news here. Related Links:
Heidi's "Skinny Songs" ||
NCWIT Heroes ||
NCWIT Blog ||
CO Coalition for Gender and IT ||
NCWIT Channel || Keywords: Heidi Roizen, Skinny Songs, Mobius Venture Capital, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes >Bytes: 16585563> LISTEN 8/20/07
Helen Greiner is co-founder and Chairman of the Board of iRobot Corp., maker of the Roomba® Vacuuming Robot (over 2M units sold) and the iRobot PackBot® Tactical Mobile Robot, which deactivates mines in Iraq and Afghanistan. Inspired by the science fiction movie, Star Wars, and getting enthralled with R2D2, led to the innovative "iRobot" success story... and yes, credit cards are part of the story. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) asked Helen some revealing questions about the 17-year history of iRobots. There wasn't an iRobot business plan, we didn’thave a clear crisp idea of how the technology would be used. And it was a long haul in the beginning. If I were to do it over again...listen for more.
421_ Life of the Entrepreneur: Controlling Your Destiny
A few keys for being a successful entrepreneur shared by Nancy Phillips were: maintain a good sense of humor; overcome the nay-sayers; and practice real-world economics. Nancy is the Co-Founder, Director, COO of ViaWest and shared her story and poignant points about building and growing a business even in the toughest of times to Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy along with Larry Nelson. Nancy loves technology and people and has a long history with the Telecom industry. She enjoys the challenges of being an entrepreneur for many reasons including her passion to control her destiny. Nancy says her husband claims, "Because I'm a control freak." Phillips has also been a principal, executive and consultant for numerous successful telecommunications companies including France Telecom, MCI and Qwest. Over 15 years ago, she began her career with Teleconferencing Systems Canada as Vice President of Sales and it was in this role that she met Roy Dimoff - the two have been loyal business partners ever since. Nancy shares some excellent advice for managers, leaders and entrepreneurs. Related Links: ViaWest || NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice|| Keywords: Nancy Phillips, ViaWest, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes > 12/10/07 Bytes: 48124972 LISTEN
372_Building a Team, Listening and Liking to Win MetricStream provides comprehensive solutions for Governance, Risk, Compliance (GRC) and Quality Management. The CEO of MetricStream, Shellye Archambeau graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business and went right onto IBM. She was a dreamer and wanted to become the first African-American female president. Her 15 years at IBM taught her a great deal which included, let's get back to reality and see how she could apply what she had learned at IBM within a small company. She became president of Blockbuster at a time when companies were trying to figure out the solution for an online presence. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy discuss the lessons learned in Shellye's experience in various other executive roles. She is an author, expert on Sarbanes-Oxley and a sought-after speaker. Today, Shellye is the CEO of MetricStream, and is responsible for running all facets of the business. LISTEN
334_ From Apple to US West to Freshwater Technologies
Always striving for the best while capitalizing on diversity, Donna Auguste captured the entrepreneurial spirit which took her to the ‘winners circle’ many times and then to financial freedom. Donna was the first African-American woman to enter the Ph.D. program in computer science at Carnegie Mellon University, a field dominated by white men.
Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology
(NCWIT) talked to Donna about her amazing story, about starting Freshwater Technologies in 1996 and selling it for $147 million in cash. Lucy explores with Donna, where her passion is taking her today. Less than a year ago, she launched Leave a Little Room, a philanthropic organization dedicated to global outreach. You’ll understand why Donna is a NCWIT Hero.
"We'll never know what we're missing without more women participating in information technology. We can't measure absence."
- Lucy Sanders, NCWIT CEO and Co-founder
Elaine Wherry majored in Symbolic Systems at Stanford. It wasn't until she went to college that she thought technology was cool. After Stanford, she worked at Synaptics as the Manager of Usability. Elaine plays the violin and migrated west to California, after growing up on a goat farm. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) and Larry Nelson discussed her responsibilities and even got some advice about slide rules. Elaine co-founded meebo.com which is a website for instant messaging from absolutely anywhere you can hop over to meebo.com on any computer to access all of your buddies (AIM, Yahoo!, MSN, Google Talk, ICQ, Jabber). She's an NCWIT Hero.
Related Links: NCWIT Heroes || Meebo || Meebo Blog || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice|| Keywords: Elaine Wherry, meebo, Lucy Sanders, CEO National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT > Channels: NCWIT Bytes: 18826870 LISTEN 7/2/07
347_ The Real Deal - From Theoretical
Mathematics to CEO
Elizabeth Charnock founded Cataphora and has led it from concept to successful profitability funded entirely by revenues from clients and without any outside investment. To do this, she has drawn on her prior experience as a CEO and on her extensive knowledge of information retrieval technology and business. She was CEO and founder of Troba, an industry leading Customer Relationship Management software company which she sold in 2001. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy explore the the challenges, choices and successes of this NCWIT Hero.
Trust your gut, be paranoid and work with your competitors. That's some very interesting advice to entrepreneurs offered by Bambi Francisco the co-founder and CEO of Vator.tv. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy discussed entrepreneurial success ideas with her as well as some of the traps to avoid. Bambi is a veteran editor, columnist, and correspondent, covering the technology and Internet industries for 15 years. Her newsletters reached 400,000 subscribers interested in her thoughts on Internet trends and investing across public and private companies. She's appeared on Fox News, CNBC, and CBS as a commentator on the Internet. She was also the morning business anchor for KPIX, the CBS San Francisco affiliate. Bambi was a founding producer at CNNfn, where she created business programming including programs on new ideas and innovation. Listen, this is more than newsworthy.
353_Founding and Selling Evite.com is Just the Beginning
Prior to joining Entertainment, Selina Tobaccowala founded Evite.com, an online invitation service that currently sends over three million invitations a month. As vice president of engineering for Evite.com, she led the company's development and operations and played a key role in setting the strategic direction with the board of directors. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy explore the the challenges, choices and successes of this NCWIT Hero. In 2001, Evite.com was sold to Ticketmaster. Tobaccowala managed the transition then took on the role of senior director of product and technology for CRM (customer relationship management) for Ticketmaster.
Related Links: NCWIT Heroes || NCWIT Blog || CO Coalition for Gender and IT || NCWIT Practice|| NCWIT Channel ||Keywords: Selina Tobaccowala, Evite, Lucy Sanders, Lee Kennedy, Entrepreneurs, National Center for Women & Information Technology, NCWIT Heroes, Ticketmaster >Bytes: 11592936> LISTEN8/6/07
355_International Human Rights Has a High-Tech Friend
Gillian Caldwell is a film maker and an attorney with experience in the areas of international human rights, civil rights, intellectual property, contracts, and family law. She is the Executive Director of witness.org, which uses the power of video to open the eyes of the world to human rights abuses. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy explore the makeup of and how Witness operates and Gillian's background as well as her take on the personal characteristics of a successful entrepreneur. She earned her way into the circle of fame of the NCWIT Heroes. Gillian was formerly the Co-Director of the Global Survival Network, where she coordinated a two-year undercover investigation into the trafficking of women for forced prostitution from Russia and the Newly Independent States that helped spur new anti-trafficking legislation in the U.S. and abroad.
344_Kim Karin Polese is the CEO of SpikeSource, Inc., a software company based in Silicon Valley. The company is backed by venture firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Prior to that, Kim was president and CEO of Marimba, Inc. and was one of the most prominent Silicon Valley executives during the dot-com era. Polese spent more than seven years with Sun Microsystems working as a Java product manager, before embarking on Marimba's Java-based business. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology along with NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy and our own Larry Nelson, probe Kim for the reasons for her move from big corporate to the entrepreneurial world.
369_ From Prison and Torture to an Entrepreneurial Success Ping Fu did not attend school at all between the ages of 7 and 18. Instead of San Francisco, Berkeley, and the Ivy League, she was educated through torture, exile, and imprisonment in her native China during the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s and 1970s. After living a 23-year nightmare in her homeland, Ping has been living the American Dream. Amongst many awards, Ping was named Entrepreneur of the Year for the Carolinas by Inc Magazine in 2005. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology and NCWIT board member, Lee Kennedy explore what makes this extraordinary entrepreneur tick. Ping Fu is Chairman, President and CEO of Geomagic. She co-founded Geomagic and has led its growth from start-up to worldwide leader in the digital shape sampling and processing (DSSP) industry. Geomagic has attracted more than $8 million in capital from private and institutional investors, and won millions of dollars in research innovation grants from NSF and NIST. LISTEN
340_Eileen Gittins Founder, President, and CEO, Blurb, Inc. is an NCWIT Hero. Lucy Sanders, CEO and Founder of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) discusses the fun (and lessons learned) Eileen is having building Blurb.com. Eileen Gittins wanted to create a beautifully designed and professionally produced photo essay book, something that looked like a book you'd buy at the bookstore, but she only needed 40 copies. This turned out to be remarkably painful, expensive, and time-consuming, and she thought that was just wrong. So she founded Blurb. She recommends to 'fail fast' and to never forget the value of the team.