Sitting in the (NCWIT) Red Chair celebrating Women in Tech

If I haven’t mentioned it before, I’d like to remind you that I am a Tech babe for life!  For years I honed my skills as a programmer (certified by Java and Oracle) while employed by some of the best companies in the world. My apps were stellar (if I do say so myself) and clients were always happy.  However, as a young programmer, I’d look around and see very few female programmers, and even fewer people of color venturing into the world of technology.  Today, I’m so excited to be co-developing some really exciting initiatives to improve the pipeline of women and underserved minorities in technology. More to come on my technology initiatives in future posts….

Carla Franklin sitting in the NCWIT Red Chair

Carla Franklin sitting in the NCWIT Red Chair

The red chair in the photo above is part of the NCWIT Red Chair campaign to support and improve opportunities for Women in Technology.  Current data on the issue shows that NCWIT’s campaign is urgently needed.  Consider the following data published by the University of Buffalo in February, 2014:

  • Women make up nearly half of the workforce, yet they held only one quarter of all technology and computing jobs in 2011, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
  • In 2008, women earned more than half — 57 percent — of all bachelor’s degrees, but only 18 percent of the degrees awarded in computer and information science, down from 37 percent in 1985, the National Center for Women & Information Technology reported in its “By the Numbers 2009.”
  • According to a study by the Center for Work-Life Policy, 74 percent of women in technology report “loving their work,” yet 56 percent leave their careers at the “mid-level” point — more than double the quit rate for men. And they’re leaving not because of family obligations, but because they’re dissatisfied with their jobs.
  • Only 10 percent of corporate officer positions and 11 percent of board of directors’ positions at Fortune 500 technology companies were held by women, according to the 2008 census of corporate officers and top earners of Fortune 500 companies by Catalyst, a nonprofit devoted to expanding opportunities for women and business.

I hope that more women (and men) join me in this red chair.

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My 2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight: Feminism 2.0

Carla Franklin - SXSW InteractiveSpecial thanks to the SXSW committee, and to Megan Simpson for writing such an amazing SXSW Spotlight Post about me and my SXSW Interactive panel, Feminism 2.0: Technology and Women’s Empowerment.  Read more below….

“Former Java programmer and cybercrimes advocate, Carla Franklin, is a woman on a mission. Immensely passionate about technology and social media, she believes it holds great power to transform and empower women globally. On Monday, March 10th, she’ll host a panel at the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival titled, “Feminism 2.0 – Technology and Women’s Empowerment.”

 

SXSW: Tell us more about Feminism 2.0.
Franklin: The feminist movement entered a new era with the emergence of the internet and social media. Key advances in software development and mobile innovation allow women to better balance work and life, further career goals and boost advocacy initiatives. Feminism 2.0 is the evolution of the feminist movement in this high-tech age. By empowering women through digital innovation, feminism today continues to improve opportunities for women worldwide through technology….click here for the full SXSW Spotlight interview.

Bridging the digital divide in underserved communities: NY Social Media Week program

Social Media Week NY - Carla Franklin

A few weeks ago I organized a New York Social Media Week event that focused on bridging the gap between the tech industry and underserved minority communities. Entitled, Hood to Hipster: Silicon Alley’s Impact on NYC’s Underserved Communities, the two-part program focused on improving opportunities for women and minority tech entrepreneurs, and the importance of integrating technology in to community development activities in underserved areas of NYC. I was honored to have some amazing speakers and participants take part in this program. Special thanks to every who helped me make this event possible.

For more information, please visit the NY Social Media Week event listing at: http://socialmediaweek.org/newyork/events/?id=137229

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Event Title: Hood to Hipster: Silicon Alley’s Impact on NYC’s Underserved Communities

Part 1: Improving the pipeline of Women and Minorities in Tech [Tech-entrepreneur business pitch showcase and panel discussion]

  • Entrepreneurs
  • Judges:
    • Meredith Blount — Associate, Cooley, LLC
    • Alexandra Lutz — Vice President, Global Business Strategy, Huge, Inc
    • Mike Germano – CEO/co-founder at Carrot Creative + Chief Digital Officer at VICE
    • Steve Whittier – Group Creative Director at Big Fuel
    • Carla Franklin — President, Carlin Solutions, LLC (moderator)

Part 2: Bridging the Technological Divide in New York through Community Development [Roundtable]

  • Speakers:
    • Majora Carter — CEO, StartUp Box #SouthBronx
    • Mike Germano – CEO/co-founder at Carrot Creative + Chief Digital Officer at VICE
    • Evan Hines – Acting-Commissioner/Citywide CIO , NYC Department of IT and Telecommunications
    • Kyle Kimball — President, New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC)
    • Kai D. Feder, Dir., Capital Budget & Economic Development, Office of the Brooklyn Borough President
    • Eric Adams — Brooklyn Borough President
    • Carla Franklin — President, Carlin Solutions, LLC (moderator)

Ratchet or Refined: Old School Paper Weekly Planners

20130502-035746.jpgDear 1993, you left something behind. Perhaps space and time folded at some point over the past month, creating a “worm hole” like something out of Dr. Who or Star Trek (the “Next Generation” series of course) through which this relic fell into 2013. However it happened, I cannot figure out why paper planners are still being sold in this day. I mean, given the progressive evolution of phones and other technologies over the past 20 years, it was surprising to see this in the aisle of my local office supply store last week.

Who uses even uses a paper planner nowadays? My 87 year old granddad has a planner, but he uses it to write down phone numbers (don’t ask why he won’t use an address book…long story). But outside of those who are Octogenarians or older, who still uses a planner? Smartphones are all encompassing communication/entertainment/organizing tools. They make up over 80% of the mobile market in the US. Online and e-mail calendar tools like Google Calendar and Outlook are available to those who are still have flip phones.

Some people are traditionalists though. Like those who avoid Kindles and other e-Readers, instead preferring to turn the pages of a real book. Maybe these are the people who by paper weekly planners. Or perhaps, Staples keeps them around for the 70, 80 and 90+ year olds like my grand dad.

So, as I stood inside the office supply store last week, stunned, but amused by this paper weekly planner, I asked myself…is this ratchet or refined?