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45 Minute Read

101 Black Tech Titans 2021

BAM's Lessons from Dandapani: Unveiling the Power of Purpose

"We lift our gazes not to what stands between us, but what stands before us. We close the divide because we know to put our future firstwe must first put our differences aside." - Amanda Gorman

BAM celebrates Black History Month by admiring 101 Black Tech Titans. The list consists of Black thought leaders and venture capitalists in the tech industry. These titans are not in order of importance because they are all barrier-breaking. This list is a representation of becoming the promises of last summer and being the difference that shapes the new world.

Don't see your favorite Black Tech Titans? Explore last year's list: 101 Black Tech Titans 2020.

Untitled design (7)Please enjoy the BAM Black History Month Playlist as you scroll through the list.


Shelly Bell1.Shelly Bell is the founder and CEO of Black Girl Ventures, which creates access to capital for female founders of color. Specifically, the company funds and scales tech-enabled, revenue-generating businesses (under $1M) founded by people who identify as Black/Brown and female. Recently NIKE, Inc. announced its Economic Empowerment Partnership with Black Girl Ventures with a $500,000 investment.


Miracle Allums2. Miracle Allums is the founder of Mhoodle, a concierge virtual support service for mental health professionals. She is a licensed master social worker and was inspired to create the service while working in the field. She is a dedicated social justice advocate, educator, and supporter of women of color both in the workplace and in the community. As of 2020 she is the founder of the themossymob, a holistic sea moss and wellness company.

Ivan Also3. Ivan Alo is the co-founder and managing partner of New Age Capital,  which invests in tech and tech-enabled startups founded and led by Black and Latino entrepreneurs. The firm has deployed $500,000 into 12 companies at the pre-seed, seed, and Series A stages.  


Sheena Allen4. Sheena Allen is the founder of CapWay, which brings financial services and opportunities to underserved millennials. The company also works to promote financial literacy among its users. She is also an author and debuted in the documentary film “She Started It” which followed five woman around their start up journey. She uses her platform and experience to educate and inspire people to develop their own startup.


Chris Bennett 5. Chris Bennett is the CEO of Wonderschool, a platform that supports high-quality, in-home child care programs and connects them with local families seeking care.



Arlan Hamilton 6. Arlan Hamilton is the founder and managing partner of Backstage Capital, a fund that is dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT. Remarkably, she started her company while homeless. Today, it has raised more than $7 million and invested in more than 130 startup companies led by underestimated founders. She is also the author of “It’s About Damn Time”, a narrative about her journey into entrepreneurship and venture capital.

Michael Seibel 7. Michael Seibel is the CEO and partner at Y Combinator, which takes a fresh approach to funding early-stage startups by investing small amounts of money ($150K) twice a year in a large number of budding companies. He has advised hundreds of startups and has been active in promoting diversity efforts among startup founders


Bärí A. Williams8. Bärí A. Williams is VP of Legal, Business, and Policy Affairs at All Turtles, a startup advisor in the tech industry, and published author in the New York Times, WIRED, Fortune, and Fast Company.


Leslie Miley9. Leslie Miley is the former CTO of the Obama Foundation and has held leadership roles at Google, Slack, Twitter, and Apple. He serves as an adviser to several startups founded by women and minorities and is an investor in a fund dedicated to entrepreneurs who are POC, LGBT, and women. He has been featured on Wired's Next List, a contributor to USA Today, HuffPost, CNN, Fast Company, and TechCrunch.

Iddris Sandu10. Iddris Sandu is a coder who has worked from the age of 13 with some of the biggest names in tech such as Twitter, Google, Uber, Instagram, and Snapchat. He co-founded the first smart store The Marathon Store  with late rapper Nipsey Hussle. He is dedicated to using technology to improve everyday things, such as parking, and thinks of himself as an architect. He has developed the first high tech parking meter and is currently focused on projects geared towards bringing tech to minority communities and infrastructure development. Sandu was born in Ghana and has not forgotten his roots as he is hosting workshops and educational programs related to technology. 

Annie Jean-Baptiste11. Annie Jean-Baptiste is currently the head of production inclusion at Google. As it says on her website,  “Annie is passionate about making the web work for underserved communities while ensuring that Google is a place where everyone shines for their differences.” She also serves as the entrepreneur in residence at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate school. Annie Jean-Baptiste formerly created programs related to Diversity talent management and career development within several technical product areas within Google. Anne's passion and accompaniments have been covered by several publications including but not limited to Vogue, Business Insider, and CNBC.

Marques Brownlee12. Marques Brownlee, also known professionally as MKBHD, is a YouTuber best known for his technology-focused videos. The MKBHD Quality Tech YouTube channel has more than 10 million subscribers and over 1.6 billion views. Marques also hosts Waveform: The MKBHD Podcast. Made for gadget lovers and tech-heads, this podcast takes a deep dive into a variety of tech-related topics. 


Dawn Dickson13. Dawn Dickson is the CEO of PopCom, an automated retail company that uses facial recognition, AI, and blockchain technology to help retailers collect customer insights. She is a successful serial entrepreneur who has launched four successful cash flow positive companies since 2002. She has been recognized as one of the nation's top entrepreneurs on the rise and has featured in several publications such as Forbes and Fortune. In addition to the previous accomplishments, Dawn was named among ‘50 Young Visionary Women Leaders to Watch’ by Innov8tiv Magazine.


Sydney Sykes14. Sydney Sykes is co-founder of BLCK VC, a firm that advances black venture investors by providing a focused community built for and by black venture investors. She says she was inspired to launch BLCK VC because she believes network support is critical to an investor’s success.


Rodney Williams15. Rodney Williams is co-founder of LISNR, a data-over-sound platform, designed to improve connectivity between electronic devices with speakers or a microphone - enhancing the end-user experience. Notable clients include NBC, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter’s entertainment company ROC Nation, the Dallas Cowboys, Sony Music, and Jaguar/Land Rover


Jay-Z16. Shawn Carter, known professionally as Jay-Z, is a serial entrepreneur who acquired the tech company Aspiro in 2015 and took charge of its media streaming service TIDAL. In 2020, he raised $85M to back his venture capital firm, Marcy Venture Partners (MVP). Recently, Jay-Z created a $10M fund for cannabis industry startups founded by people of color to bolster participation in the cannabis industry.   

Snoop Dogg17. Snoop Dogg is co-owner of Casa Verde Capital, which recently raised $100 million in its second round of funding. Casa Verde (CV) is the leading venture capital firm focused exclusively on the cannabis industry.


Monique Woodard18. Monique Woodard is the co-founder of Black Founders. Black founders is an organization creating an ecosystem that stimulates tech entrepreneurship and economic growth. Its mission is to increase the number of successful Black entrepreneurs in technology. 


unnamed (5)19. Megan Rose Dickey is a reporter at TechCrunch focused on diversity and inclusion in tech, and the intersecting worlds of tech and social justice activism. She has extensive experience in print, radio, and television journalism, covering a wide array of topics such as technology and startups, city government, education, community activism, non-profit organizations, recreational activities, the judicial system, and business.

Kaya Thomas20. Kaya Thomas is currently the Senior Software Engineer at Calm. In 2014 she launched “We Read Too”, a book resource app that features a wide selection of books featuring people of color as lead characters. This collection features works by Latinx, Asian, Black, and Indigenous authors.


Sevetri Wilson21. Sevetri Wilson is the founder and CEO of two technology start ups, Resilia and Solid Ground Innovations LLC, as well as an award winning founder and author. Solid Ground Innovations LLC, her first company, is a strategic communications agency and the inspiration for her book, "Solid Ground: How I built a 7 figure company at 22 with Zero Capital." Resilia, her newest venture, was founded in 2016 and advises and revolutionizes how nonprofits are developed and maintained. She is an advocate for Black founders, contributes to Forbes, and is featured in several national publications.

Willie Morrow

22. Willie Morrow is a pioneer in the Black hair-care industry. He is most known for bringing the Afro-pick to America and creating the California Curl, whose chemical compound would be responsible for the Jheri curl.


Sian Morson23. Sian Morson is an entrepreneur and founder of Kollective Mobile, a mobile development and strategy agency,. She works as a mobile evangelist and strategists for independent clients as well as a variety of nonprofits. Morson focuses on combining creativity with technology and is not only an entrepreneur, but also an author and an internationally exhibited artist.

Brian Dixon24. Brian Dixon is the first and youngest African American partner at Kapor Capital. He is a two-time tech startup founder, a Kauffman Fellow, and a Management Leadership for Tomorrow Fellow. Dixon has shared his investment experience on several stages including TechCrunch. Additionally, he was named one of Business Insider's “46 Most Important African Americans in Technology.”


Regina Gwynn25. Regina Gwynn is the CEO of TresseNoire, a virtual beauty coach designed to provide custom hair care solutions for women with textured hair, and co-founder of Black Women Talk Tech, a platform for Black women founders to build a support network and scale each other's companies into the next billion-dollar businesses. Black Women Talk Tech is the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs in the country, with 10 chapters across the United States.

Lauren Ruffin26. Lauren Ruffin is a thought leader, CEO, founder, and board member, focused on sustainable, anti-racist systems and organizations. Lauren is a co-founder of Crux, a storytelling studio that collaborates with Black artists in the virtual reality and augmented reality (XR) space, and serves as Co-CEO and Chief External Relations Officer for Fractured Atlas, the largest association of independent artists in the United States. Lauren is a board member of Black Girls CODE, Main Street Phoenix Cooperative, and on the advisory boards of ArtUp and Black Girl Ventures. 


151625798814727. Chris Lwanga is the Principal Director of Software Partnerships at Microsoft, with over 20 years of experience with the company. He heads a team that works with over 1200 startups and ISV partners in Cloud and Enterprise markets. Chris’ focal point is building globally successful ecosystems and partnerships with startups and emerging markets strategy & business development, specifically in Africa.


Dr. Cynthia Overton28. Dr. Cynthia Overton is the Director of Tech Workplace Initiatives at the Kapor Center, where she builds community and provides learning opportunities for professionals advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the tech industry. This includes leading Diversity Advocates, a professional learning community dedicated to creating a diverse and inclusive workforce throughout the tech industry. She is the lead on Our Collective, a network of professionals advancing inclusion for Black and Latinx talent in tech through employee resource groups.

Jacky Alciné29. Jacky Alciné is a Software Engineer at Nava — a public benefit corporation working to radically improve how government serves people — and a Developer at black.af; a software consultancy that focuses on digital solutions for individuals, businesses, and organizations specializing in web and mobile solutions. His prior experience includes software development at Glitch and Lyft. “I support and stand for the open social web, human and animal rights, and power to all oppressed peoples.”

Joshua Encarnacion30. Joshua Encarnacion is currently the Head of Talent at Career Karma and is the former Chief Learning Officer at Outco Inc. Joshua has built his career developing programs focusing on training software engineers on the non-technical skills necessary to get through technical interviews such as communication, networking, negotiation, presentation, and emotional intelligence. Joshua has worked with companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, UBER, Airbnb, Netflix, Pandora, Slack, Twitter, Pinterest, Earnest, Gusto, Affirm, Abstract, and many more in attracting diverse talent.

Kim Folsom31. Kim Folsom the founder and CEO of Founders First Capital Partners, LLC., (FFCP). She is a high-tech executive and serial entrepreneur who has founded, led, and grown innovative companies for more than 25 years. Founders is a $100M fund and the largest private capital provider of growth funding in the country for service-based businesses and the only minority and women-led revenue-based venture platform.


John Henry32. John Henry is a Venture Capitalist and 3x Entrepreneur. He’s the founder of Harlem Capital, has raised $40M and made 20 investments in Women and Minority entrepreneurs, and currently serves as the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Loop - an insurance technology company that leverages AI and data to create more fairly priced auto insurance products for all, creating a more equitable future in the auto insurance space.


Andrew D’Souza33. Andrew D’Souza is CEO and co-founder of Clearbanc, the fastest, most affordable way for founders to fund their business. He’s raised hundreds of millions of dollars in venture capital and is an adviser and investor to companies such as WealthSimple, Properly, and Tulip Retail. Prior to Clearbanc, Andrew was the president of Nymi, a wearable platform focussed on identity and security and the COO of education startup, TopHat.

Tope Awotona34. Tope Awotona is the Co-Founder and CEO of Calendly, the fastest growing company in scheduling automation. Tope spent seven years growing strategic accounts and territories for some of the most successful software companies including IBM, Perceptive Software, ImageRight/Vertafore, and EMC. He launched 3 startups before becoming the founder of Calendly. Calendly is now valued around $3 billion, with a staff size of 213 people.

Steven Green35. Steven Green is a catalyst and startup advisor for Black & Latinx founders, specifically in Portland. He is the Founder of PitchBlack, a national pitch event helping black founders connect with funders in several cities across the country. Those who have participated in the pitch event in Portland have gone on to raise $32M in capital.


Tiffani Ashley Bell36. Tiffani Ashley Bell is the Founder and Executive Director at The Human Utility, a platform matching donors from around the world with low-income and/or elderly Detroit and Baltimore families in need of water bill assistance. She is a former fellow at Harvard and Code for America, and has been covered in over 80 domestic and international news outlets for the impact of her work in using tech to help the vulnerable.


Danielle Leslie37. Danielle Leslie is the CEO of Culture Add Labs where she helps people create and launch profitable online courses. Previously, she worked at Udemy where she helped influencers (including Guy Kawasaki) collectively earn millions of dollars by monetizing their content and expertise through online courses. In 2016, she launched her program, Course From Scratch, a 60-day online accelerator for first-time course creators. In 3 years, she grew her course sales to over $7M, helping over 3,000 people.

Felecia Hatcher38. Felecia Hatcher is the Co-Founder of the Center for Black Innovation — a lab focused on resources, training, networks, funding, and inclusive policies — assisting innovators within the Black community. Throughout her career, Felecia has started one of the longest standing tech and startup conferences on the east coast for Black Innovators. 

Mina Markham39. Mina Markham is a front-end developer who is actively involved in the tech community in Oakland, California. She is a staff software engineer at Slack, previously at IBM design, and the Hillary Clinton Campaign. Her “labors of love” include being a mentor for Girl Develop it, a lead tech instructor for Black Girls CODE, and the Co-Organizer of Front Porch — a conference on front-end web technologies for developers, designers, entrepreneurs, and managers.

Elliott Robinson40. Elliott Robinson is a partner at Bessemer Ventures. He boasts over 15 years of international experience with tech companies and is currently focussing on investments in the cloud software, consumer internet, and frontier tech industries. He is a Kauffman Fellow and a Board Director of BLCK VC, assisting in connecting and empowering Black venture investors.


Kristina-Jones-Court-Buddy41. Kristina Jones is an “award winning advertising art director turned tech entrepreneur.” She is the founder and CEO of Guardian Lane, the first video-sharing platform for children’s grief counseling. Previously, Kristina was the Co-Founder of Courtbuddy.com, named "Tech Company of the Year" by Black Enterprise.



1_u1VxBY0Mi1QMUMdpLbfc9A 42. Brittany Davis is a general partner at Backstage Capital, a venture capital seed fund investing exclusively in startups that are led by underrepresented founders. Previous to Backstage, Brittany was a principal for #ANGELS, where she sourced companies and contributed to the #TheGapTable initiative, Manager at Village Capital, Associate at Techstars, and acted as a Mentor at Startup Jamaica.

Sydney Thomas43. Sydney Thomas was a first hire at Precursor Ventures in August of 2016, and currently serves as a Principal on the team. Sydney is a Berkley MBA graduate. Sydney is a Co-Founder of Women of Color in VC, an advisory board member of multiple companies, and a nonprofit focusing on the racial wealth gap by connecting rising professionals of color to leadership opportunities at VC-backed startups. 

Catherine Bracy44. Catherine Bracy is the Co-Founder and CEO of TechEquity Collaborative with the mission of building an environment of tech professionals and companies to create opportunity instead of inequality and displacement. Previously, Catherine was a Senior Director of Partnerships and Ecosystem at Code for America, where she grew the network to over 50,000 in 80+ cities, and was responsible for 64% of the total growth in the civic tech community.

Albery Brown45. Albery Brown is the lead on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Airtable. He has helped shape DEI programs at DocuSign, Pivotal Labs, and Hack Reactor. His LinkedIn bio says it all — “I’m rooting for everyone Black.” 


Jeremy Richardson46. Jeremy Richardson is the VP of Product at Catch&Release, an advertisement tech company. At 23, Jeremy Co-Founded San Francisco-based startup Womply. Today, having raised a $30 Million Series B, Womply employs over 250 people and is one of the fastest-growing merchant-focused companies in America. 


8fdOXCQO_400x40047. Taj Ahmad Eldridge is the Senior Director of Investments at LACI and the former Accelerator Director at the University of California Riverside, where he helped raise the Highlander Venture Fund. Taj has also been a Founder, Board Member, and Investor in companies such as ILTG Media, Boswell Official apparel, Voter, Xtopoly, Rookielook, iListen, KYC Hospitality, KIGT, and ConCreates. Taj also serves on the board of Umoja Community, FundHumanity, and Homeboy Industries.

Alex Lofton48. Alex Lofton is the Co-Founder of Landed, a fintech company for homebuyers in education and healthcare with $22M in venture-backed funding. A quote from Alex’s blog notes that Alex “believes that valuing Black lives isn’t a zero-sum game.”


Brenda Wilkerson49. Brenda Darden Wilkerson is the CEO and President of AnitaB.org, an organization focused on sustaining an equitable future for women in tech by cultivating a global community. Brenda Darden Wilkerson founded the original Computer Science for All program, building computer science classes into the curriculum for every student in the Chicago Public Schools, and serving as the inspiration for the Obama administration’s national CS For All initiatives.

Terell Sterling50. Terell Sterling whose motto is “Entrepreneurship for Everyone,” is the founder and CEO of Go Paladin a Silicon Valley nonprofit that connects underrepresented and underserved entrepreneurs to the vast startup ecosystem. Sterling has comprehensive experience in entrepreneurship, technology, and innovation. Sterling worked at the start-up RealScout, as a partner at the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, and has worked at a number of Fortune 500 high-tech companies including Apple, Tesla, and Oracle.


Ryan Leslie51. Ryan Leslie is a grammy-nominated music producer turned entrepreneur who founder of SuperPhone, a scalable SMS messaging to millions of supporters worldwide.



a53d530a93821f62b046f09c14d7a5df52. Will Smith is an actor, film producer, rapper and most recently co-founder of Dreamers VC. Dreamers VC is a venture capital fund that connects Japanese corporate investors with early stage U.S.-based companies. The firm invests in innovative companies, alongside top-tier lead investors, with the goal of improving lives through the application of emerging technology.



Chamillionaire53. Chamillionaire is an award-winning record artist turned investor and entrepreneur in the tech space. He is the CEO and Founder of Convoz, a collaborative social media platform. He has invested in more than a dozen tech companies, including Maker Studios (acquired by Disney), Cruise (acquired by GM), and Lyft, which went public in 2018. He also advises a number of high-profile entertainers and athletes on their tech investments.

akon54. Akon, renowned music mogul, has recently committed to building Akon City, a futuristic cryptocurrency themed city, that has secured over $6B in financing. The city will exclusively use the “Akoin” digital currency and plans to have parks, universities, schools, a stadium, hotels, and more.

doja-cat-responds-to-nas-diss-on-ultra-black-155. Nas is not only regarded as one of the best rappers to ever touch a mic, but is also a Venture Capitalist and the founder of Queensbridge Ventures. Queensbridge Ventures is a venture firm that invests in technology companies that transform life, work, and play. He is also the founder of record company & media mogul Mass Appeal.


Timmit Gebru56. Timnit Gebru is an AI ethics researcher and the founder of Black in AI, a community of Black researchers working in artificial intelligence. She works on algorithmic bias and data mining. Prior to 2021, Timmit worked at Google as the co-leader of their ethical AI team.


Aniyia Williams57. Aniyia Williams is a systempreneur and founder of Black & Brown Founders, a nonprofit which helps Black and Latinx entrepreneurs launch tech businesses. Aniyia is also co-founder of Zebras Unite, an entrepreneur-led movement focused on creating a more ethical and sustainable startup ecosystem.


Darrell Jones III58. Darrell Jones III is a co-founder of the TechEquity Collaborative. Prior to TechEquity Darrell led business development and social impact for Clef, an internet security startup.


Ruben A. Harris

59. Ruben A. Harris is the co-founder of Career Karma, a venture backed startup that allows users easy-access to jobs in the tech industry. Since launching Career Karma and partnering with Y Combinator, the team has raised $10 million in venture capital.


Wayne Sutton60. Wayne Sutton is the Founder of the Icon Project, a startup that builds emotional intelligence to advance the success of Black and Brown men in tech. Wayne is also the co-founder of Change Catalyst and its Tech Inclusion programs.



Sarah Kunst61. Sarah Kunst is the managing director of Cleo Capital and a contributing editor at Marie Claire Magazine. Prior to Cleo Capital, she was the senior advisor at Bumble. Kunst is an innovator and has been recognized by Vanity Fair as a Future Innovator, Forbes Magazine 30 under 30, Business Insider’s 30 under 30 Women in Tech, Top African-American in Tech & Pitchbook, and honored as a top woman in VC by the Wall Street Journal. 

Everett Harper62. Everett Harper is the CEO and co-founder of Truss. Previously, Everett was the director of special projects at Self-Help, where his work was instrumental in creating the CDFI Fund, which has made $3.6B in loans to undeveloped communities.


Brian Brackeen63. Brian Brackeen is the founder of Kairos, a facial recognition company that you can trust. He is also general partner at Lightship Capital, a founder-focused investment fund.



https___blogs-images.forbes.com_darrahbrustein_files_2019_01_Shaq-Headshot-1-1200x90064. Shaq, the 15-time NBA All-Star, has set the blueprint for other NBA athletes interested in the tech & startup world. He was recently announced as the new brand ambassador for Novex Biotech, a leading sports nutrition company. He is well-known for being an early investor in Google and Apple.


MC Hammer65. MC Hammer, early 90’s pop-rapper, is very well known in the Tech community. He has invested in a handful of startups including Youtube and owns a piece of Twitter.


Magic Johnson66. NBA Hall of Fame player Magic Johnson is the CEO of venture capital firm Magic Johnson Enterprises. In 2020 he was announced to the board of directors at Uncharted, a leader in smart power and data infrastructure technology. Uncharted has raised $12.5 million, with investors including Disney, Kapor Capital, BBG Ventures, and Lingo Ventures.

Ulili Onovakpuri67. Ulili Onovakpuri is a Venture Capitalist and Partner at Kapor Capital, an early stage, social impact venture capital firm that invests in gap-closing startups. Ulili is committed to changing the tech and VC landscape for people that come behind her.


Erin_Teague@2x68. Erin Teague leads the virtual and augmented reality product team at YouTube. Previously, Erin was the director of product management for Yahoo’s Fantasy Sports and a Product Manager at Twitter.


maxresdefault-269. Dr. Johnetta MacCalla is the CEO of Zyrobotics, an award-winning creator of inclusive, educational technologies for the diverse needs of children with differing abilities. Dr. Johnetta MacCalla has 35 years of executive level work.

91efeMe8JaL._US230_70. Angel Rich is the founder and CEO of The Wealth Factory Inc., which designs financial literacy and workforce development education technology games. Her company’s mission is to reduce poverty by providing equal access to quality, easy to understand financial literacy across the world.


158801555226571. Joe Beard is the co-founder of CollateralEdge, a fintech platform that uses automation to develop loan credit profiles for banks. He is also the Founder of Venture Dallas, a 501c6 non-profit, volunteer-led organization dedicated to growing the innovation ecosystem in Dallas-Fort Worth.


jerry-nemorin-hero-2350x152072. Jerry Nemorin is the founder and CEO at LendStreet, a fintech company focused on debt consolidation. Previously, he worked at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in its Global Corporate & Investing Banking division. Jerry helped businesses consolidate their debt during the financial crisis.

Boris-Moyston73. Boris Moyston, a co-founder of Black Men Talk Tech, is passionate about innovation and economic justice. In addition to Black Men Talk Tech, Boris is a co-founder of two fintech startups: MOBIP and Fundr.Ai.

13stacy-blog48074. Stacy Spikes is the founder of Preshow. Previously, Stacy Co-founded MoviePass and held senior executive roles at Motown Records, Sony Music Entertainment, Miramax Films.

10984989_10153002819776699_5439058822043166363_n75. Ade Adesanya is the co-founder & President at Moving Analytics, a digital heart disease prevention and intervention platform.



Garrett-Morgan-2-1-640x42376. Garrett Morgan was an African-American inventor whose most notable invention was the three-position traffic signal. He is responsible for technology behind the gas mask, the electric hair-curling comb. Garret was also an activist and philanthropist that laid the foundation for Black inventors of the future.

BeaArthurHeadshot-177. Bea Arthur is the CEO of The Difference, an online therapy platform merging psychology with technology. She is a psychotherapist, author and was the first African American female founder in Y-Combinator.




ZuleykaStrasner-Grid-400x28478. Zuleyka Strasner is the Founder and CEO of Zero Grocery, a zero-waste grocery delivery service. They were the first zero-waste grocery store in the US. In 2020 she announced that Zero Grocery raised $3M Seed, taking the capital raised to $4.7M.


cf3a9686final-web-779. Riana Lynn is the Founder of Journey Foods, a food tech company that utilizes technology to help companies feed 8 billion people better. She is a biologist turned tech entrepreneur, public speaker, thought leader on all things food, and travel. Prior to this she was funded by the Google-backed Entrepreneur in Residency program.


g-w-carver80. George Washington Carver was a scientist and inventor who focused on alternatives to cotton. He developed hundreds of products using peanuts, soybeans, and sweet potatoes. He is now known as "the father of chemurgy," biochemical engineering with a focus on agriculture.


download-181. From janitor to superhero, Vivien Theodore Thomas was an American laboratory supervisor who developed a heart surgery procedure used to treat blue baby syndrome in the 1940s. In his honor The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine created The Vivien Thomas Fund to established and increase diversity. His story was later interpreted by HBO in Something the Lord Made. He was played by Hip Hop artist and actor Mos Def.

7k2mXOs0_400x40082. Jasmine Crowe is the CEO of Goodr, a startup focused on eliminating food waste and hunger. They take the waisted food for companies and distribute it to people in need. She is a TED talk speaker who is passionate about food hunger issues.


imgID64944500.jpg.gallery83. Darren Tenkorang is the founder of TRIM-IT, a mobile barber service that allows its customers to order a haircut right at their doorstep. Darren has a Bachelor's Degree focused in Business/Managerial studies from University of Sussex.



6d523c207ae5005f58797e6a2d24b3179beeceda_Songe20LaRon20Faces20of20Entrepreneurship_tcm5044-5167284. Songe LaRon is the CEO and co-founder of Squire, an all in one platform that powers barbershop operations. Squire is has raised over $450M in venture funding. Before founding Squire, Songe was an attorney specializing in acquisitions. He is a Y-Combinator, Yale Law School graduate, and UCLA alumni.

30087075_945074358993089_2263413955009445888_n85. Joah Spearman is the founder and CEO of Localeur, a travel assistance start up that shares local listings and activities in more than 185 cities around the world. With the help of 100 strategic investors, Joah is one of the few African American founders to raise more than $5M.


fTLiwbWB_400x40086.Jordan Walker is the COO Yac.com, a voice messaging platform here to replace the company meeting. Backed by Slack, Arlan Hamilton, Global venture capital firm, Active Capital, Yac.com has raised $7.5 million in their series A funding round. Jordan’s other ventures include being the founder of Friendly.


ericajoybaker-portrait87. Erica Joy Baker is a senior engineering manager who has worked for several major tech companies, including Google, Slack, and Microsoft. She is a well-known advocate for diversity and inclusion in the tech world.



ewscripps.brightspotcdn88. Christine Darden, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Dorothy Vaughan are known as the “Hidden Figures.” During and after the Civil Rights Movement, these four women were responsible for helping launch Americans into orbit for the first time. Working for NASA, this group of mathematicians, computer            programmers, and engineers were the human computers that laid the foundation for space exploration.

155167391186789. Jessica O. Matthews invented the SOCCKET ball to provide off-grid power for the developing world at the age of 19. Three years later, she co-founded Uncharted Power,  a full-service power technology company that builds, owns, and operates renewable power infrastructure.


Screen Shot 2021-02-24 at 7.04.41 AM90. Morgan DeBaun is the CEO and founder of Blavity, a media company created by and for Black millennials. Today it is the leading news company and media brand for Black millennials + Gen Z in the U.S.



155786133735691. Crystal Evuleocha is the CEO & founder of Kiira Health Inc.,  the first women's telemedicine company for focused on colleges and Universities. Crystal is originally born and raised in Nigeria. She is also the Founder of FemHealthTech, a yearly healthcare conference centered around women's health.


LISA_GELOBTER_FL_2033_v1_WEB92. Lisa Gelobter is the co-founder and CEO of tEQuitable, which provides an independent, confidential platform to address issues of bias, harassment, and discrimination in the workplace. She also played an integral role in creating Shockwave, a technology that formed the beginning of web animation — which is now used for animated GIFs.

93. Maria Velissaris is a managing partner at SteelSky Ventures, a platform that provides consulting and fundraising services for companies with female founders. Specifically, the company supports startups dedicated to women’s health. 


94. Paris Wallace is the co-founder and CEO of Ovia Health, a platform that offers maternity and family benefits solutions for employers and health plans. He is also the founder of Good Start Genetics, a genomics technology company focused on fertility and reproductive health, which was recently acquired by Invitae. 


95. Alex Wolf is the founder of BossBabe, a subscription-based online community for millennial female entrepreneurs. Though she has since sold the company, she is still largely considered a well-respected tech philosopher. 


96. Rodney Williams is co-founder of LISNR, which improves connectivity between electronic devices with speakers or a microphone. The company’s clients include NBC, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter’s entertainment company ROC Nation, the Dallas Cowboys, Sony Music, and Jaguar/Land Rover. 


97. Ryan Williams founded Cadre, an $800 million real estate tech company that lets qualified investors view details on apartment and office properties, with video walk-throughs, maps, lists of tenants, and data. 



Derrick L. Miles98. Derrick L. Miles is CEO & founder of at CourMed, an enterprise software and innovative concierge delivery service. Derrick has been a health care executive for 15+ years and is also the chairman and founder of TMB Equity Partners; a boutique firm focused on investing/developing innovative healthcare solutions that achieve a liquidity event within five years.


Jessie Wolley-Wilson99. Jessie Wolley-Wilson is the president and CEO of DreamBox Learning, an online software that focuses on K-8 math education. She has worked in the education tech space for more than 20 years, and she recently secured a $130 million investment in DreamBox from The Rise Fund, a global impact investing fund managed by TPG Growth. 


Lonnie Johnson100. Lonnie Johnson is a NASA aerospace engineer with over 100 patents. He is most known for inventing the 90's toy phenomenon, the Super Soaker. He is currently working on a battery that will store store three times the energy of a lithium ion battery.


Karen Young101. Karen Young is the founder and CEO of OUI the People, a high-end, direct-to-consumer shaving brand that aims to celebrate beauty in its natural form. She recently pivoted her company a bit to be more gender-neutral, in an effort to be more inclusive of those who identify as non-binary and cisgender. 



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