In one week the Kapor Center will descend upon Austin, Texas for the first ever Latin@s in Tech SxSW pre-conference, uniting some of the most accomplished Latino/a tech leaders in the country. The one day conference on March 6th will feature notable speakers, including Maria Hinojosa and Ben Jealous, panels, and sessions aimed to unite Latino/as in tech with the notion that the collective power harnessed by the community far exceeds what individuals can accomplish independently. Participants will attend from across the country, ranging from investors and startup entrepreneurs to designers and social justice advocates.
The catalyst for this event comes from the 2013 SXSW Interactive conference. Our staff members in attendance were impressed by the integration of a Blacks in Tech track that amplified the voices of black tech innovators and cultivated community ties amongst black participants. We saw the potential and seeded the conversations to apply this platform and extend the organizing power for people of color in tech across more communities at SXSW.
Just one year later, SXSW Interactive, and Latino-led organizations, are, arguably, proudly putting forth the most robust presence of Latino/a tech leaders to ever converge at festival. Our pre-conference, organized in partnership with long-time advocate, Kety Esquivel, principal of Esquivel McCarson Consulting, aims to foster an even greater Latino/a presence at SXSW, offer a space that showcases and connects Latino/as in tech, and facilitates the participation of Latino/as throughout the entire conference. We’re excited that Latino/as can attend our event as well as the “Latinos in Tech” track for free at this year’s SXSW Interactive conference, ensuring that Latino/a voices emerge resonantly throughout the entire conference.