Women in technology are often faced with stiff competition and gender inequality. However, the sector can boast of notable and inspiring women who sit as outstanding amazons in the tech hall of fame with glaring achievements to show for their hard-work.
Although women may not dominate the industry as much as their male counterparts, but if you pause for a while to observe their various inputs from different regions and brands to the overarching tech industry you will find outstanding results which symbolizes the truth about women’s push to take the lead and pave the way for the younger generation. Though female representation in technology sector might be few when compared to their male counterpart, their contributions are not little or less valuable.
Until the time comes when the industry will begin to offer equal opportunity and representation to women we will not stop commending the women who have forged ahead to become outstanding in this very competitive sector.
This week’s article on ‘’ 7 things ‘’ portray 7 women who are inspirational role models and are taking technology to a different level from different corners of the globe.
1. Sheryl Kara Sandberg: is an American tech woman born on the 28th of August 1969. She currently serves as the chief operating officer (COO) of Facebook since 2008. Sheryl is the founder of Leanin.org. Before joining Facebook she served as vice president of global online sales and operations at Google, and was involved in launching Google’s philanthropic arm Google.org. Before Google, Sandberg served as chief of staff for United States Secretary of the Treasury Lawrence Summers. Under her leadership as Chief Operating Officer at Facebook, she led the social media company from a $56 million loss to $22.1 billion in profits in 2018. In June 2012, she was elected to Facebook’s board of directors by the existing board members, becoming the first woman to serve on its board. Her tireless contribution to the tech industry has earned her a lot of recognition including being the sixth “Most Powerful Women in Business” by Fortune Magazine.
2. Susan Diane Wojcicki: is a Polish-American woman in tech, born July 5, 1968. She currently serves as the CEO of YouTube since February 2014. Wojcicki studied at Harvard University and graduated with honors in history and literature in 1990. She also received her Master’s of Science in economics from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1993 and a Master of Business Administration from the UCLA Anderson School of Management in 1998. She started out in business selling “spice ropes” door-to-door at age 11. Wojcicki was a founding member of Google, and became Google’s first marketing manager in 1999. She was in charge of Google’s original video service, and after observing the success of YouTube, proposed the acquisition of YouTube by Google in 2006. Before joining Google, she worked in marketing at Intel Corporation in Santa Clara, California, and Bain & Company and R.B. Webber & Company as a management consultant. Under Wojcicki’s leadership as CEO of YouTube, the company reached 2 billion logged-in users a month and users were watching one billion hours a day. YouTube was rebranded in a way that it birth localized versions in 100 countries around the world across 80 languages. Most importantly, Wojcicki’s leadership increased YouTube’s employment of female staff from 24 percent to nearly 30 percent. Wojcicki is the 6th most powerful woman in the world according to Forbes list of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.
3. Cher Wang: is a Taiwanese tech woman born, 15 September 1958, into the family of late Wang Yung Ching, Founder of Formosa Plastics and Business tycoon. She is the co-founder and chairperson of HTC Corporation and integrated chipset maker VIA Technologies since 2007. Cher studied at The College Preparatory School in Oakland, California, and in 1981 went on to receive her bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California, Berkeley. Cher is considered as one of the most powerful and successful women in technology. As of 2014, she was listed as the 54th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes. Before co-founding HTC in 1997, she established a number of successful IT-related businesses, including founding VIA Technologies, Inc. in 1987. She is currently Chairwoman of both companies, and holds leadership roles in numerous other enterprises and organizations. On the account of her giant strides as an innovative tech woman she was honored on Forbes World’s Billionaires list from 2010 to 2012, amongst others.
4. Sun Yafang: is an inspiring tech woman from China who was the former Chairwoman of Huawei (served from 1999 to 2018). She studied at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China(UESTC), and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1982. She went on to work as a technician at Xin Fei TV Manufactory and later became an engineer at the Beijing Research Institution of Communication Technology in 1985. She joined Huawei in 1989 and was promoted to the position of the chairwoman of the corporation in 1999. According to a 2011 report by the CIA, Sun also worked for the Ministry of State Security of the People’s Republic of China and she was linked to the Chinese military. She stepped down as Chairwoman of Huawei in March 2018, after so many achievements. Sun was the 38th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes in 2016.
5. Dorcas Muthoni: the founder of Openworld Ltd, a specialist computer software company in Kenya that deals in the delivery of some of the most widely used Web and Cloud applications in Africa, including ARIS, an African Union reporting application used by all 54 member states. Dorcas is an alumni of the University of Nairobi, where she studied Computer Science. She has been trained in wireless networks, radio-communications and strategic technology planning, among other subjects. Dorcas established Openworld when she was 24 years old, following her passion to use technology as tool to positively change the African society. Her method for this transformation is through the ordinary African people, governments and enterprises. Dorcas also serves as the co-founder of the regional organization LinuxChix Africa, a Director at Ushahidi and a Member of the council of the Free Software and Open Source Foundation for Africa – FOSSFA. Based on her conscious effort towards developing technology in Africa she has been honored on various platforms including being inducted by the Internet Society into the Internet Hall of Fame, in 2012.
6. Juliana Rotich: is a woman in tech from Kenya who has worked in IT industry for over a decade. She studied in the University of Missouri, and has a degree in information technology. Juliana is the Co-founder of BRCK Inc., a hardware company based in Kenya that makes BRCK and other devices. Juliana is also the Co-founder of Ushahidi Inc, a non-profit tech company, born in Africa, which specializes in developing free and open source software for changing how information flows in the world. She is also a trustee of The iHub in Kenya and Bankinter Foundation for Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Spain. She was named Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year in Africa by the World Economic Forum, in 2011.
7. Kathryn Parsons: is a British tech entrepreneur, the co-founder and co-CEO of Decoded. Decoded is a London-based tech startup which aims to increase digital literacy. The company currently serves as one of the leading global brands offering technology masterclasses in 85 cities across the world reaching 250,000 people face-to-face, as well as hundreds of thousands more online. Parsons has been recognized following her exception input in the tech industry and has received various awards such as the Veuve Clicquot New Generation Award which she received in 2013, the Women of the Future award in Technology and the UK Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year and Digital Business of the Year, amongst others.