Each week in the New Tech Newsletter we feature a Spotlight Q&A with founders, angels, New Tech alumni presenters, and other people or companies in our community we believe you’d like to learn about. Reach out if you’d like to recommend a startup, founder, angel, accelerator, or New Tech alumni presenter for us to spotlight for the PNW tech community!
In this week’s spotlight we caught up with Eileen Lambert, Operations and Program Manager for Seattle Women in Tech. Check out their event Embracing Equity within Women in Tech: Bridging the Gap coming up on March 29th.
What inspired creating your event?
As the admin and lead for Seattle Women in Tech, I’ve noticed a recurring theme of member inquiries, requests, and offers by members to coordinate in person events as a way to connect with other women in tech. I personally have not had the bandwidth to put on events, as we don’t currently have a core team of volunteers in place within the group to support our programming.
The group has not had an in-person event since Feb 2020, where we had a “Share the Love: Seattle Womxn in Tech Give Back” panel event where mid to senior career level WIT shared their wisdom through “lessons learned” to their fellow attendees that was a huge success.
In researching International Women’s Day, I didn’t see any other other women in tech or tech organizations holding any public IWD events, so we decided to take the lead on that, and in the process, re-establish our group as an active group holding programming, as other like-minded groups have become inactive and we noticed there is a gap in programming available.
How does your event and organization serve the tech community?
This group fills the gap left when more established WIT and Professional groups became inactive within the past years, such as Seattle Girl Geek Dinners and Lean In Seattle.
It is believed to be the only active regional WIT group that is not membership-fee based. We are also 100% volunteer-run and actively recruiting an Advisory Board to shape and lead the future of the group.
SWIT exists and works to advance women in tech, especially those from non-traditional backgrounds, historically marginalized or underrepresented groups. SWIT welcomes any and all interest and support.
What’s the most innovative or interesting thing about this year’s event?
After a 3 year hiatus, Seattle Women in Tech is thrilled to welcome back the women in tech community for an evening celebrating International Women’s Day, whose 2023 theme is Embrace Equity. We don’t believe any other tech organizations are doing any IWD events, so we decided to answer the call and combine a global celebration of women with a local celebration of women in tech and kick off our programming for the year.
This event welcomes women across Engineering, recruiting, DEI and Agile coaching in a moderated panel where we’ll explore and engage on the topic of Embracing Equity within Women in Tech: Bridging the Gap.
We expect attendees to be inspired, encouraged, and empowered at what the future holds for Women in Tech and how we can collectively join the movement in championing change and bridging the tech gap to embrace equity.
Attendees will also get to experience the modern, innovative Blink UX offices as well as networking with fellow women in tech over refreshments before sitting down to a conversation on the current state of equity in tech and what is being done to bridge the tech gap.
What do you love the most about your organization?
The encouragement, support, kindness and welcoming spirit shown by all members of the group toward each other. Whenever a request is made for advice, resources, volunteer support, or review of ones’s work, I see other women in the group step up and show their fellow group members that they are not alone – and that they are seen and that they are valued and supported.
What is one of the highlights, or memorable moments, for you in doing this work?
Getting to witness women in tech from a broad array of diverse backgrounds, coming together over a shared purpose. Getting the wheels turning and seeing action and engagement when members are putting their thoughts out there and seeking advice, support, or connection and how others are responding so positively and genuinely is truly rewarding. Members have connected IRL outside the group and have helped each other land jobs, learn about bootcamp programs, gain confidence to pursue a skill and more. It is so inspiring and rewarding to see what this group I have been fostering and nurturing over the past 5 years has grown to be and the potential it has to grow and become an even greater resource for WIT in the greater Seattle area.