Pigeonly’s CEO helps prison inmates

Kapor Center

LAS VEGAS – Not far from the slot machines and neon lights of the Strip, a few dozen tech companies hammer away at the future in a downtown area revitalized by Zappos founder Tony Hsieh. But you can bet that no founder here has a stranger story than Pigeonly CEO Frederick Hutson. In the fall of 2007, Hutson, now 30, …

Hardware Startup Birdi Seeded to Build a Better Smoke Alarm

Kapor Center

CNRY Inc., better known as Birdi, raised $700,000 in new seed funding to build a better smoke alarm, Venture Capital Dispatch has learned. The company’s first product, still in a prototype and testing phase, is a “smart” smoke detector and air-quality monitor that communicates with and is managed by iOS or Android mobile devices. The product bears more than a passing …

In Silicon Valley diversity conversations, age is left out

Kapor Center

Often criticized for its lagging workforce diversity, Silicon Valley appears to be feeling the pressure. Over the past three months, a half-dozen leading tech companies have released diversity numbers, accompanied by pledges to improve them. Still others have promised to follow suit. But one set of statistics has been noticeably absent: the age of those companies’ workers. Silicon Valley’s conversation about diversity …

Why Diversity In Tech Matters: ‘People Solve Problems That They See’

Kapor Center

Host Michel Martin talks to a roundtable of activists and innovators about the future of technology, and recruiting the next generation of African-Americans and Latinos into the tech field. Copyright © 2014 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required. LISTEN TO THE STORY HERE MICHEL MARTIN, HOST: This is TELL ME …

Next To Silicon Valley, Nonprofits Draw Youth Of Color Into Tech

Kapor Center

Listen to the story on NPR i Aarti Shahani/NPR Twenty-year-old Taneka Armstrong wants to land a high-tech job, but her day starts at Taco Bell. Armstrong stands behind a steel counter, making Burrito Supremes and ringing up customers. She counts pennies and quarters. She also gets orders from her bosses, who she says can be pretty condescending. “They’re just like, …

Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative gets $104 million boost

Kapor Center

Six months since the launch of My Brother’s Keeper — the president’s boldest effort since taking office to address the dire state of young minority men — Obama is set to announce that millions are being dedicated to expanding the initiative. According to a White House official, Obama will announce Monday at the Walker Jones Education Center in Washington new partnerships …

Silicon Valley barriers, not lack of skills, impede diversity

Freada Kapor Klein

By Freada Kapor Klein Facebook has become the latest high-profile tech company to release its diversity numbers. Like Google, Yahoo and LinkedIn before it, Facebook’s numbers present a disturbingly homogenous picture. From engineers to accountants, Facebookers are overwhelmingly white or Asian, and decidedly male. These results are disappointing, but not surprising. For all its promise and opportunity, Silicon Valley has long …

Can Oakland Avoid Tech Conflicts as Startups Move In?

Kapor Center

he start-up scene has spilled over from San Francisco into Oakland. The blog Live Work Oakland has created a map showing where all these new tech companies are popping up in the city. The city’s emerging tech industry is trying to cultivate a new brand — one that’s more diverse and has a better relationship with the community. Entrepreneurs, investors and activists …

Oakland’s fight to save black boys

Kapor Center

07/15/14 07:22 AM—UPDATED 07/15/14 10:42 AM By Elissa Curtis and Trymaine Lee Oakland, California— The gunshots. The headlines. The seemingly endless stream of young black men sent to early graves. It all becomes part of the fog that seems to distort the narrative of this city. Once ground zero for the Black Power movement and any number of progressive ideals, Oakland has become more …

5 Tips to VC Fundraising For the Atypical Founder

Kapor Center

Tristan Walker is CEO of personal grooming company Walker and Co. The affable thirtysomething has the shiny resume one expects of a startup founder. College valedictorian, Stanford MBA, Boston Consulting Group and stints at tech titans like Twitter, Foursquare and Andreessen Horowitz. Baldwin Cunningham, co-founder of Partnered, has a similarly tech world approved CV. He was a college football player who worked …

Tech giants pledge to seek more diverse group of employees

Kapor Center

Barbara Grady July 1, 2014 Technology giants have been lifting the curtains on the diversity statistics of their workforces recently and the pictures aren’t pretty: the overwhelming majority working at Facebook, Google, Yahoo and LinkedInare male and white, or male and Asian. But the good news is that the companies’ sudden transparency comes with new intentions to seek talent in a wider range of places and …

Facebook much like other tech giants is dominated by white males

Kapor Center

by Kunbi Tinuoye | June 29, 2014 at 1:38 PM Facebook has just released its diversity stats for the first time and revealed what most of us already knew. The social media giant is overwhelmingly white, with the majority of tech and senior roles dominated by males. The data discloses that Facebook is 69 percent male worldwide and 57 percent white in the …