Women of Color in Tech Reception – Los Angeles

Nearly 100 women were in attendance at Digital Diversity Network’s (DDN) inaugural Los Angeles Women of Color in Technology Reception on Wednesday, December 5th at Universal Studios.

Hosted in partnership with NBCUniversal, this signature, invitation-only event provided a platform for influential women of color within the digital media and technology sectors to impart their wisdom and passion; share their stories; and inspire others to defy the odds and thrive in the Creative Economy.

The multicultural group included women from diverse backgrounds and disciplines within digital and tech–largely from the media and entertainment industries.  In addition to NBCUniversal, attendee companies included:  ABC, Dreamworks, E! Entertainment, Fandango, 20th Century Fox, Get Lifted, HBO, Live Nation, Macro, Netflix, Oath/AOL/Verizon Media Group,Universal Music, Univision Creator Network, UTA, Versus Systems, YouTube, Warner Bros. and more.

Themed, Our Presence, Our Power,  the event comprised a networking reception and a two-part panel discussion, Negotiating Power Imbalances  and Entitlement to Power,  led by DDN Founder Tracy L. Lawrence, Managing Director, Tracy L. Lawrence Leadership Advisory & Executive in Residence at USC Marshall School of Business. 

Our highly accomplished speaker lineup included: Kibi Anderson, President, Red Table Talk, Inc.; Erika Bennett, Global Head, Social & Influencer Marketing YouTube Originals & TV; Kalia Booker, Director, Drama Programming, HBO; Sahara Bushue, SVP, Alternative Programming, NBCUniversal Entertainment; Jennifer Perri, VP, Univision Creator Network; Thai Randolph, EVP & General Manager, Laugh Out Loud Network; Katie Soo, SVP, Marketing, Warner Bros. Digital Networks; Aaliyah Williams, Chief Content Officer’ The Digital Studio at MACRO; and Amelia Winger-Bearskin, Director of Product, Decoded & Founder, IDEA New Rochelle. 

Each of these women shared their wisdom about the source of their power; how they tap into it and own it; knowing their worth; how they negotiate power dynamics in both their professional and personal lives; and how they pay it forward to future generations.  Several of them acknowledged having powerful women in their ancestry who instilled a sense of entitlement to power from an early age.  They “just assumed that women ran the world.”

Here’s what our attendees had to say about the event:

“It was an incredible evening filled with so many inspiring and validating conversations. I gained so much insight from the candid conversations for which I am very appreciative!”

“These were two of the best panels I’ve heard. Each panelist was specific, honest and transparent about their career journeys and what matters to them.”

“The panels were wonderful and I left feeling so empowered.”

“The conversation was so candid and enriching – absolutely amazing sisterhood.”

“Truly two of the best panels I’ve ever attended!  Congratulations all on a job exquisitely done.”

The LA event once again embodied our theme, Our Presence, Our Power, as those who were present, left feeling more empowered to: trust their instincts; demand to be compensated for their worth; take control of their careers;  and to leverage their expertise to help other women of color thrive within the digital media and technology sectors.  

DDN extends our deepest gratitude to our presenting partner, NBCUniversal, for their support in helping us to expand the Women of Color in Technology initiative to Southern California.  Prior events have been hosted in New York City (in partnership with HBO) and Silicon Valley (in partnership with YouTube).   More to come in 2019!  

Visit the event gallery to see photos from the Los Angeles event.