5th Annual NYC Summit/2nd Annual Innovation & Inclusion Awards

5th Annual NYC Summit & 2nd Annual Innovation & Inclusion Awards

Thursday, October 19, 2017

2:00pm – 9:00pm

Hosted by:

315 Hudson Street

New York, NY  10013


The New Tech Currency:  Culture x Creativity

By 2020, creativity will be the third most valued skill set–up from tenth place in 2015—and, thereby, one of our most precious and powerful resources in the digital age. *

We Are At A Tipping Point.

Technology and business model disruptors, coupled with Demographic shifts and other socio-economic factors, will have a profound impact on the employment landscape –potentially creating more income disparities, inequality, and societal tensions.

Culture, coupled with the power of Creativity and enabled by Technology, will constitute our new Currency. This combo will be essential to mitigating the impact of digital transformation; ensuring inclusion; and optimizing opportunities for sustainable economic and social impact. How will we leverage them to win?

Join us on October 19th for a day of conversation and celebration with diverse digital and tech professionals who are already harnessing creativity, technology and genius to evolve our culture, our workplaces and our society.

*Source: The World Economic Forum 2016 Future of Jobs Report


Summit: 2:00 – 6:00pm

Cocktail Reception: 6:00 – 7:00pm

Innovation & Inclusion Awards Ceremony: 7:00 – 9:00pm


Summit Agenda

2:00 – 2:05pm: Opening/Welcome 

2:05 – 2:50pm:  Creating an Inclusive Culture From the Inside Out

True inclusion continues to be elusive. Despite greater commitments toward diversity, organizational cultures still foster assimilation rather than actual inclusion. Workforce diversity doesn’t end with hiring. You have to work to maintain an environment that is hospitable to employees from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. Creating and maintaining an inclusive workplace allows employees from all backgrounds and walks of life to achieve their fullest potential; and accepts, values and views as strength the difference we all bring to the table. Learn strategies and tips from organizations that are encouraging their teams to bring their full selves to work.


  • Kedma Pognon Brown, SVP, Operations & Project Management, Zenith


  • Kymber Lim, Co-founder / Chief Creative Officer + Head of Studio, Holor Media
  • Michael Rubenstein, President, AppNexus
  • Janet Crenshaw Smith, President, Ivy Planning Group


2:55 – 3:40pm:  The Intersection of Tech, Pop Culture & Social Justice – presented in partnership with Pop Culture Collaborative

How do we leverage the reach and power of tech, pop culture and entertainment for social justice goals? By driving authentic, just narratives about people of color, immigrants, refugees and Muslims in the media – we can shift how mass audiences understand the past, grasp the present, and imagine an inclusive future. Meet tech, creative and social justice leaders who are working together to create and popularize stories that shape the narratives, values, beliefs and behaviors that define American culture.


  • Darian S. Harvin, News Curation Editor at BuzzFeed News


  • Daniel Alejandro Leon-Davis, Co-Founder and Senior Creative Director at SOZE / Social Media Director to Russell Simmons
  • Dr. Travis McPhail, Staff Software Engineer, Google Maps
  • Jesse Moore, CEO, Common Thread Strategies  & Chief Comms Strategist, Pop Culture Collaborative
  • Yamilée Toussaint, Founder & CEO, STEM From Dance


3:40 – 3:55pm:  Networking Break


3:55 – 4:20pm:  Lighting Talks

Inside the Business of eSports

  • Akshay Khanna, VP of Strategy, Philadelphia 76ers

Virtual Money:  A Primer to Understanding Cryptocurrency

  • Anora Gaudiano, Markets Reporter, MarketWatch


4:25 – 5:10pm:  AI & Machine Learning:  Implications for Inclusion & Equality

Artificial intelligence is about using algorithms to teach machines how to think, come to conclusions, and execute actions on their own. But, behind every computer is the person who programmed it. And, by default, human biases are baked into machine-learning algorithms. In this session, we will discuss how the bias of a creator infiltrates a computer’s thinking and how to ensure that the development, execution and collection of data is a true reflection of the world we live in.


  • Paolo Gaudiano, Executive Director, Center for Quantitative Studies of Diversity & Inclusion,City College of New York, and Founder, Aleria


  • Micah Brown, Founder & CEO, Centiment
  • Katie Dixon, Principal Solutions Specialist, Data & AI, Microsoft
  • Diego J. Medina, VP, Products, Platforms & Partners, Viacom Advanced Advertising 
  • Lauren Washington, Co-founder/CEO, KeepUp APP & Founder, Black Women Talk Tech
  • Adelyn Zhou, CMO, TOPBOTS


5:15 – 6:00pm:  Gentrifying Genius:  Urban Creators Stripped Bare – presented in partnership with I’mPOSSIBLE

It’s no secret that Black and Brown youth often dictate culture. In fact, many of them are creating innovative and viral content on social media without getting any of the rewards or recognition. How do we reverse that situation and ensure that they are equipped to monetize their content?


  • Simone Bresi-Ando, Founder, I’mPOSSIBLE.Global CIC


  • Tatiana Holifield-Arthur, Senior Director, Social Media Marketing Strategy, Viacom
  • Manushka Magloire, Community Affairs & Culture, Afropunk, LLC
  • Ngozi Odita, Co-founder & Executive Director, Social Media Week Lagos
  • Earnest Pettie, Brand & Diversity Content Curator, YouTube
  • Jessica Rodriguez, Founder, LLERO.com, a digital lifestyle platform for Latino men

6:00pm – 9:00pm:  2nd Annual Innovation & Inclusion Awards Reception & Ceremony – separate ticket required

Advance registration required by Monday, October 16.  For questions, please contact kathy.johnson@digitaldiversitynetwork.com.

Register Now!  Save with an all-access pass for both the Summit and Innovation & Inclusion Awards!