Kimberly Bryant

Founder & CEO , Black Girls CODE

Kimberly Bryant is the Founder and CEO of Black Girls CODE, a non-profit organization dedicated to “changing the face of technology” by introducing girls of color (ages 7-17) to the field of technology and computer science with a concentration on entrepreneurial concepts.

Prior to starting Black Girls CODE, Kimberly enjoyed a successful 20+ year professional career in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries as an Engineering Manager in a series of technical leadership roles for various Fortune 50 companies such as Genentech, Merck, and Pfizer. Since 2011 Kimberly has helped Black Girls CODE grow from a local grassroots initiative serving only the Bay Area, to an international organization with fourteen chapters across the U.S. and in Johannesburg, South Africa. Black Girls CODE has currently reached over 10,000 students and continues to grow and thrive.

Kimberly has been nationally recognized as a thought leader for her work to increase opportunities for women and girls in the technology industry and has received numerous awards for her work with Black Girls CODE. Kimberly has been awarded the prestigious Jefferson Award for Community Service for her work to support communities in the Bay Area, named by Business Insider on its list of “The 25 Most Influential African-Americans in Technology”, and named to The Root 100 and the Ebony Power 100 lists in2013. Kimberly has been named one of FastCompany’s Most Creative People. Kimberly was named a White House as a Champion of Change for her work in tech inclusion and for her focus on bridging the digital divide for girls of color and received an Ingenuity Award in Social Progress from the Smithsonian Institute. She has been identified as a thought leader in the area of tech inclusion and has spoken on the topic at conferences nationally and internationally such as the Personal Democracy Forum, TedX Kansas City, Platform Summit, Big Ideas Festival, South By Southwest (SXSW), and many others.

Session Info

Tuesday, June 09 12:00 pm – 12:45 pm On-Demand

Finding Opportunity in Times of Uncertainty

Kimberly Bryant founded Black Girls CODE to create pathways to careers in Computer Science for her daughter Kai and girls like her who have been historically marginalized in STEM careers, particularly in the field of technology. Her goal was to prepare these “tech divas” to be able to lead the digital transformation in which we currently find ourselves immersed in. With the advent of the coronavirus pandemic and on the eve of its tenth year in operation, Black Girls CODE is experiencing a digital transformation of its own, pivoting from in-person events to virtual learning models. Bryant will share the Black Girls CODE story, from its founding to its current transformational moment, as well as contemporary and historical case studies of resilience and leadership by women and people of color in times of crisis. During this transformation, Bryant sees an opportunity to “widen the Black Girls CODE net” and support disadvantaged students beyond their normal reach and will ask how we all can navigate and learn from today’s challenges to find new opportunities, new ways of thinking, and new ways to create a hopeful future.

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