Boston Book Festival 2020 Boston Book Festival 2020

The Color of Innovation: Women of Color in Tech

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Ainissa Ramirez
The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another

Ainissa Ramirez is an award-winning materials scientist and science communicator whose work has been published in Forbes, Time, the Atlantic, Scientific American, American Scientist, and Science. In 2015 she won the Andrew Gemant award not only for research but also for encouraging people to think about science. She has published several books, including Save Our Science: How to Inspire a New Generation of Scientists, and Newton’s Football: The Science Behind America’s Game, which Publishers Weekly calls “fun and thought-provoking.” Her latest book, The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another, provides a clever outlook on innovations throughout history and how they have changed culture itself. Kirkus Reviews calls it “entertaining and elucidating—popular science done right, with enthusiasm and without dumbing-down.”

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Susanne Tedrick
Women of Color in Tech: A Blueprint for Inspiring and Mentoring the Next Generation of Technology Innovators

Susanne Tedrick is a cloud computing tech specialist and writer. Tedrick is extremely passionate about increasing diversity and inclusion in the tech industry. Her recently published book, Women of Color in Tech: A Blueprint for Inspiring and Mentoring the Next Generation of Technology Innovators, compiles information on a variety of careers in tech, resources, and tips on how to prepare for them. Tedrick delves into the challenges of being a woman of color in the tech industry and provides insight on how to navigate and overcome them. Women of Color in Tech is an inspiring tool for women of color looking to thrive in their tech careers. Kirkus Reviews calls it, “Solid guidance from a woman who has made her mark in a technical role."

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Bridgette Wallace is the co-founder of G|Code House, a progressive communal living and co-working space to help women of color, ages eighteen to twenty-four, develop coding skills. Whether as an urban planner with the Department of Housing, an active Roxbury resident, or an entrepreneur helping launch the Innovation Center and taking on commercial gentrification with her nonprofit SkyLab, she is an out-of-the-box thinker who pushes hard for equity and inclusion for the undervalued and overlooked.

Carissa Romain is a Boston-based host, storyteller, and content cultivator. Her current focus is her YouTube series, The Formula, which highlights the amazingly positive work being done by people of color throughout the country. Romain also hosts TEDx events in both Boston and Chicago, serving as MC and interviewing speakers backstage.

This wide-ranging session offers an eye-opening survey of the past, present, and future for women of color in the tech industry. In The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another, materials scientist Ainissa Ramirez profiles eight significant inventions and examines how they have shaped the human experience. Among the many fascinating stories she shares, Ramirez also highlights the work of inventors of color and women whose significant contributions have previously been hidden or downplayed. Susanne Tedrick currently works in the industry as a technical specialist; her book Women of Color in Tech surveys the current climate for women of color in tech careers and serves as a handbook for how to break into the field—and find the support needed to thrive there. Mentoring the next generation of women innovators of color is the specialty of our third guest, Bridgette Wallace, one of the co-founders of Roxbury’s G|Code House, a co-living, working, and learning environment for young women interested in tech careers. Our host for this session is Carissa Romain, an experienced writer, interviewer, and host of The Formula, a digital series highlighting Black women with fascinating careers. Sponsored by the Wagner Foundation.

This session will also be broadcast live on Boston Neighborhood Network Media television stations.