Our 2018 Speakers
This is a conference for everyone who works in tech.
These speakers are the thought leaders we chose for this event.
Olivia Rae Guterson
Chief of Staff, Director of Special Projects at Black Tech Detroit
Creative Collaborations: Applying Art to Tech
Olivia has been in the world of tech recruiting for the past 5 years with a focus on creating community through cultivating and growing opportunities for all. Working with the leaders, builders, entrepreneurs, creators, peers, founders, students, and community members, she is on the mission to establish and promote Detroit as the heart of Black Tech. As a community coordinator and artist, she is striving to create space for us to come together to cultivate a more vibrant and inclusive tech future that not only supports and builds, but celebrates who we are and what we can accomplish together.
Brittany N. Williams
Actress, Marketing and PR Specialist, & Staff Writer at Black Nerd Problems
Translation, Typhoons, & the Show that Nearly Wasn't
Brittany N. Williams is a writer, actress, unimpressed Shakespearean Blerd, keeper of 90s theme songs, future Lord of the Fire Nation, and New Orleanian by way of Baltimore, DC, Hong Kong, London, and NYC. Catch her laying waste to all challengers in Soul Calibur or slinging literary fire for Black Nerd Problems.com.
President and Owner, LimeRed Lab & Studio
Designing Impact Through Collaboration
Owner of design agency LimeRed, which is both Certified Woman-owned and a Certified B Corporation, Emily Lonigro designs social impact — from naming to app development, from business to education. She’s a mentor for startup and established businesses and teaches at Columbia College Chicago. She’s an activist, business owner, advocate, mother, delegator, and activator.
Emily Heist Moss
Director of Student Recruitment at Girls Who Code Campus
#SquadGoals: Sharing, Caring, and Community-Building Online & IRL
Emily is the Director of Student for Girls Who Code Campus, a new summer program for girls 10 to 18 from Girls Who Code. She is committed to closing the gender gap in tech because she thinks that those who build our products shape our lives, and right now we have a lot of products that help us order lunch, and not enough that make the world happier, healthier, or more just. She previously led marketing for a coding bootcamp for adult career changers. She lives in Chicago, where she teaches yoga, wields dictatorial power over her book club, and volunteers with local pro-choice organizations.
Building Inclusive Community
Amanda Lewan is a writer and entrepreneur. She is a Co-Founder of Bamboo, where she builds inclusive workspaces and communities.
Lauren A. Hood
Community Development Consultant
Entering Spaces Respectfully & Thoughtfully: Considerations for Operating in a New Community
Born & raised in Detroit, Lauren A. Hood brings an authentic perspective to community engagement & development. Passionate about the city’s cultural heritage, Hood has spoken & written extensively on preserving black space. She currently serves on the City of Detroit Planning Commission and as an advisor to Detroit Sound Conservancy and Urban Consulate. Through her consultancy, Hood conducts workshops & designs curricula on community engagement, equitable development & racial justice for civic, philanthropic & institutional clients.
Chanita Simms & Chantai Ferguson
Founder & Vice President of Melanin.Tech
When Shit Gets Real: Advocating for Diversity in Your Organization
Chantai, a former Project Manager turned proud military spouse, and Chanita, a Help Scout Customer Champ, are based out of Atlanta, one of the most diverse cities in the country. They’ve joined forces at Melanin.Tech to battle diversity-in-technology issues and help create a dialogue.
Co-Founder and President at VolunteerLocal
Building for (and Towards) Diversity in Tech
Kaylee Williams is the President of VolunteerLocal, a volunteer scheduling and registration platform for festivals, endurance events, nonprofits and universities all over the world. VolunteerLocal has scheduled over 1.5 million volunteers into jobs and shifts for events like Lululemon’s Seawheeze Running Festival, the United States Marine Corps Marathon, Ironman, Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival and the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras in Australia, the largest LGBTQ event in the world. Williams is passionate about community service and inclusion (diversity) in tech. She is a triathlete, volunteer coach for Girls on the Run, bass guitar player and homebrewer.
Founder and CEO of Black Tech Women & Global Product Marketing at Facebook
Creating Inclusive Community in Your Profession
Anndréa Moore is the founder of Black Tech Women, a 2000+ community focused on retaining and advancing black women in the technology ecosystem. As a product marketing leader and small and medium business (SMB) expert, she’s driven growth of the SMB segment for some of the largest tech companies, including Google, Apple, and Facebook.
Business Consultant & Comedic Storyteller
As a business consultant, Laura has worked with Fortune 500 companies such as Intuit, Twitter, GE, Intel, Cisco, Autodesk, and Atlassian on brand marketing initiatives. She provides a wealth of hands-on experience to audiences on marketing strategy, corporate communications and human behavior. But there’s more…
Laura is a gifted comedic storyteller and has shared stories from her life at The Moth, Creative Mornings, Ladies Get Paid, Intermitten, Bamboo Detroit, The Vagina Monologues, RISK!, Detroit Stories, and many more. She is the creator and host of relationship podcast, Sexistential Crisis, and is working on her first book to help women date with confidence.
She is on a mission to inspire others to go after their goals, overcome their fears, and share their gifts with the world.
Founder of Global Alliance Solutions
Breaking Through Bias
Nikki Pardo is the founder of Global Alliance Solutions, a consulting company that offers highly-interactive customized diversity training for corporations, non-profit agencies, school districts, and law enforcement agencies. She also is co-founder of the Pack, a community-based project that hosts conversations linked to inclusion, equity, and community throughout Detroit. Nikki has been featured in several publications, recently received Corp! Magazine’s Diversity Business Leader Award for 2017, spoken on talk radio shows and podcasts, and is a trusted consultant on the topic of diversity, inclusion, bias and micro-aggressions. She currently serves on Birmingham’s Race Relations and Diversity Task Force (RRDTF) Board and the Board of the Hispanic Police Officer Association – Detroit Chapter. She is a certified trainer through Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) and a member of the national 2018 Seeking Education Equity and Diversity (SEED) Fellowship.