Women may still be the minority in technology and we may hear about their accomplishments less often, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t out there crushing it on a daily basis. Despite the odds, these exceptional women have risen to the top of their industries and are actively paving the way for young women to follow in their footsteps. Here are just a few of the many talented women in the tech industry and how they are leading the way in innovation.
Featured image: Bozoma Saint John, courtesy of Recode.
Bozoma Saint John
In June, Saint John transitioned from her role as one of Apple’s top executives to the chief brand officer at the seemingly ever-embattled Uber. She’s spent her career at a wide variety of globally recognized corporations and has worked incredibly hard to become one of the few black female C-suite executives in the technology industry. (She’s also responsible for Beyoncé’s Super Bowl half-time performance a few years ago!) Though she’s only been at Uber for a few months, her successful resume highlights that she has the experience, skill and talent to redefine Uber’s brand for a better tomorrow.
Nammacher is the co-founder and CEO of a startup called RideAlong, a software tool that provides first responders with information about people with mental illness at the scene they’re responding to. Before they arrive to the scene, officers will be equipped with de-escalation techniques and service referral options; these help in building up trust between responders and the citizens they’re helping. By using technology to specifically focus on a social issue, Nammacher is focusing on the importance of empathy in her work.
Bdeir founded her company, LittleBits Electronics, with the understanding that electronics are playing an increasingly larger role in our lives. But instead of the general population relying on a few inventors, LittleBits aims to give everyone the opportunity to create, whether they have engineering experience or not. By encouraging children (especially young girls) to build the technology they’re playing with, LittleBits is inspiring a new generation of creative problem-solvers to look at the tech industry as a viable career option.
Nobody knows how frustrating the job search can be other than Kathryn Minshew, who founded her company — The Muse — in response to her work experiences. If you haven’t heard of The Muse quite yet, it’s one of the best digital resources for working women. You can use it to find a career coach, templates for business emails, interview prep guides and a lot more to help you become the professional you’ve always wanted to be. Minshew shows that it’s not just the engineers who have a place in the tech industry, content creators have a place there as well.
Shotwell isn’t a household name (yet), but her last name is fitting considering her role at SpaceX — a tech company that designs, builds and launches rocket ships. Shotwell is the President of SpaceX and is also a literal rocket scientist. She not only runs one of the world’s most prominent aerospace engineering companies, but she’s consistently thinking towards the future and where the human race may (or may not) travel to. For now, SpaceX is planning to send a spacecraft to Mars in 2018, but who knows where they’ll be looking to in just a few years?