I realize that it’s not going to come as a shock to anyone that Portland needs more diverse speakers and viewpoints and topics in its startup events. You know, something to stem the neverending tide of manels around here. And that’s why I’m really happy to get the chance to share two new events focused on women entrepreneurs.
There are any number of opportunities for startups to get on stage and pitch. But it’s always more interesting when there’s a focus. Like celebrating women founders. Which is exactly what happens with Women Led and their pitch event.
People go to events for all sorts of reasons. For some, it’s a networking opportunity. For others, it’s for personal or professional development. Sometimes, it’s just because you’re hoping to get the opportunity to connect with someone who isn’t terribly accessible. But whatever the motivation, getting a ticket and to the event can often be a hardship. Luckily, PDX Women In Tech is working to lighten that burden by #InvestingInYou.
Startups often like to test things. And then iterate. And test again. Before making a big leap. So it stands to reason that an organization that spends its time working with startups would take a similar tact. That’s why local startup accelerator PIE has been working with a handful of companies to beta test its new offering, PIE Shop.
Last night, the Technology Association of Oregon (TAO) held their annual Oregon Tech Awards celebration gala, their biggest event of the year. (Coincidentally, GeekWire held their big Seattle tech awards last night, too.) And the Portland startup community was well represented.
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times: PDX Women in Tech is the best thing going in the Portland tech community right now. From startups to established corporations, the organization continues to provide an impressive—and ever growing—center of gravity for our community. And now, they’re formalizing the leadership of the organization with the hiring of their first executive director, Elizabeth Stock.
I’m a firm believer that founders do best with multiple forms of mentorship. And peer mentorship is a critical component of a well-rounded mentor pool for any founders. That’s why I’m always glad to see organizations furthering the model. Like Women Led, which is looking for participants in their mastermind groups.
If there’s one place that the Portland startup community shines, it’s working together to help others. We’ve seen that play out multiple times with efforts like Business for a Better Portland, as one example, and with any number of fundraisers and food drives. So with Portland Startup Week 2018 coming up, it makes perfect sense that the community would use that as an opportunity to come together again to help others. Introducing the Startupathon, a 24-hour podcast fundraiser put on by the Startup Radio Network.
It used to be that Portland was the land of the Camps. BarCamp, ProductCamp, WordCamp. Camp camp campity camp. These days, we seem to be more into the Weeks. Design Week, Maker Week, Sneaker Week, Startup Week… Clearly, our week game is strong. (Ahem.) So it makes perfect sense that WeWork Portland is leveraging International Women’s Day—March 8—into a whole week of activities for women. Meet She Leads PDX.