J. Kelly Hoey

Inspired, Empowering: This Is Why The Grace Hopper Celebration Matters More Than Ever

It is not simply a tech conference, for many attendees it is a life changing experience. It is reminder of the importance of being able to see what is possible — and that you are not alone, the outsider rather, you’re part of a powerful network of like-minds.

Today is the final day of the annual Grace Hopper Celebration. If you, like me, have been following the conference online — enviously, as you’re not in the room with 15,000 women in tech — here’s some feedback I gathered from women who ARE in the #GHC16 room this year. Yes, it’s fueling my FOMO and Yes, I will be registering to attend the sold-out-do-not-miss event next year!

Last year, I attended GHC, mainly to announce a new product launch but little did I know it would be a life changing experience for me! One year later, I am actively engaged in Women In Tech, Lean In, Mentoring Women in Tech and several other activities that are incredibly fulfilling and rewarding to my already dynamic career here at Capital One. I came back this year to GHC both to inspire other women and be inspired — no other conference I go to can “fill my heart and soul” as this one!! — Lakshmi Seetharaman, Director, Software Engineering

Attending the sessions to learn about how other companies have been successful on different elements of diversity and inclusion from recruiting to retention helps me incorporate new ideas into Capital One. Being able to network with so many women from Capital One and many of the companies we work with on a daily basis in an environment like GHC creates amazing development and mentoring opportunities for all. Rebecca Heironimus, Vice President, Enterprise Digital Product Management

What makes GHC so awesome is the fact that you have an opportunity to meet very diverse female technologist from all walks of life. In a world where WIT is such an important topic and a real issue, I get empowered and re-energized by seeing that I’m not the only gen Y, black women in tech striving to change things and grow my career. The ability to make organic connections and learn new things are added bonuses. — Tia J. White, Sr. Tech Leader

The Grace Hopper Celebration reminds me that I am not alone as a women in tech and that diversity progress is not only possible, but inevitable. Society has always acted towards greater diversity, and GHC is one of the leading events moving our industry in that direction. — Kaylyn Gibilterra, Software Engineer

The atmosphere at GHC is unlike that of any other conference. The inspiring keynotes, memorable friendships and technical learnings are a lasting reminder that as women technologists, we are not alone in confronting the hardships we face nor are we alone in celebrating the triumphs of our accomplishments. — Jiaqi Liu, Data Scientist

To attract and keep women in the tech field, we need women sharing their work, elevating others, and inspiring the next generation. WIT conferences like GHC create the environment to make this happen! — Margaret Mayer, Sr. Director, Software Engineering

Thanks to Capital One @CapitalOne for their continuing commitment to diversity and inclusion in technology, and for sponsoring #GHC16 (and this post).


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