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#BlackMenInTech is a membership community and brainchild of with by Brian Martinez and myself. Our goal is to provide a private membership community to connect African-American men who are founders, investors, engineers, designers, developers, or working for a startup inspiring each other become successful. We started off with brunches in San Francisco and now has transformed to an online community to help grow and connect the echo-system. At the core #BlackMenInTech is committed to diversity and inclusion. We’re passionate about uplifting African-American men and other underrepresented groups by providing access, educational opportunities. – See more at:

Today at 12pm PST / 3pm EST the #BlackMenInTech communit will host it’s frist AMA with Social Network Pioneer Omar Wasow.
About Omar
Previously Omar co-founded in 1999 and sold it in April 2008 for $38MM by Radio One.

Currently Omar is is the Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at Princeton with a PhD in African American Studies, an MA in Government and an MA in Statistics from Harvard University.

In 1995, Wasow was proclaimed by Newsweek as one of the “fifty most influential people to watch in cyberspace.” Around 1999 or 2000, Wasow introduced Oprah Winfrey to electronic mail in a series of 12 appearances on her television show.

In 2003, Wasow appeared in an Apple, Inc advertisement discussing their latest operating system at the time Mac OS X Panther.

In 2010 Wasow appeared as a guest on Stephen Colbert’s show as a guest to explain cyberwar.

You can read more about Omar here:

If you’re interested in joining the #BlackMenInTech Community you can apply at


I’m pleased to announced on June 12th-13th I’m co-organizing the first Tech Inclusion conference and workshops in San Francisco.

As technology continues to affect every sector of business and innovation, there’s a growing concern for the lack inclusion across the tech ecosystem: from the pipeline to the boardroom to Capitol Hill. Entrepreneurs, corporations, education facilities, policy makers and investment firms are all ready to do something about it. The Tech Inclusion workshops and conference will provide a safe, informative environment to explore comprehensive answers.

As diversity and inclusion is about bringing diverse minds and solutions to the table we are looking for thought leaders to explore innovative solutions in the categories of education, workplace, innovation and policy detailed in the chart below.


If you’re interested in participating as a speaker, panelist, moderator or workshop instructor fill out the “Call for Speakers” form here: Apply To Speak At Tech Inclusion Conference

You can learn more about the Tech Inclusion Conference and Workshops at

Thank You!

Conference Organizers: Melinda Epler and Wayne Sutton

Let’s face it, no one likes to get sick, especially when traveling and attending conferences. One of the largest tech conferences in the world is SXSW Interactive which attracts thousands of geeks, nerds, developers,etc to Austin each year to learn, network and of course to party. Last year (2014) SXSW Interactive attracted over 32,000 thousands people from 82 foreign countries. With that many people, networking, shaking hands, exchanging business cards, in and out of bathrooms and more, unfortunately there’s plenty of germs in the air. This is what many SXSW veterans call SXSW Sars.

In 2009 and 2010 SXSW Sars was so bad it was trending on Twitter and there were sessions at SXSW on how not to get Sars. Signs of Sars start with a sore throat, lost of voice, then low energy and lastly no appetite. It’s almost like the flu but just not as bad. Some people would say that SXSW sars is a result from a lot of parting and no sleep which is part true. Regardless of the what causes SXSW Sars, getting sick at SXSW is real.

For the past two years I’ve avoided getting sick after SXSW and being that I’ve attended and have spoken at SXSW six out of the past seven years I believe I developed a good strategy for how not to get sick before, during and after, aka how not to get SXSW sars.

Before SXSW
At least three days before SXSW start taking Zinc or zicam tablets
Get plenty of rest
Drinks lots of water
Use hand sanitizer on your flights

During SXSW
Wash your hands, like every hour
Use hand sanitizer after every contact
Use hand sanitizer before eating, leaving a session, leaving a lounge
Drinks lots of water
Eat a good breakfast
Try to get at least 6-7 hours of sleep every other night
Pack snacks(protein bars, almonds, bananas )
Take cough drops every 3-6 hours
Take Zinc or zicam tablets every 3-6 hours(especially in the morning and before you go to bed)
Bump fist more than handshake
Bump elbows when eating or the use the universal sign for “what’s up”

After SXSW
Rest, take an extra day off to just sleep in.
More Zinc or zicam tablets a couple of days after SXSW
More water

This has worked for me for the past two years. It can seem a little OCD but I rather be healthy than sick. For example I was having dinner and met one of the founders of iheart radio. He was sitting next to me. We shook hands and the waitress brought our food to the table. Before I picked up my fork, I reached for the hand sanitizer for a good cleaning and started eating.

I hope this helps for any conference and not just SXSW.

Stay healthy friends!

Diversity In Tech


Which tech companies employ the most people of colour and which are more of a whitewash?

We sifted through the global employee data of 18 tech firms from Amazon to Yahoo, ranked ‘em by race and gender, then compared against the general US population.  The data isn’t exactly black and white: not all companies declare their figures and most don’t reveal the ratio of manual labourers to executives. But some interesting patterns arise and it’s clear that some races are better represented than others.

The most graphic un-equalizer of all, though, is gender. Considering that “chicks rule” on social media, it’s strange that at employee level, social networks can look more like old boys’ networks.

» Check the data behind the colour:



Photo: #BlackMenInTech Brunch #3

Apply here.

We’re pleased to announce that we’ve partnered with Reverend Jesse Jackson and The Rainbow PUSH Coalition to provide data science scholarships for African Americans in tech. One student per cohort at GalvanizeU – Galvanize’s accredited data science program – will attend on a full scholarship. RainbowPush’s mission is to empower African Americans and people of color in technology, pursue economic justice, civil rights and racial equality, and we are honored to play a small part in their mission by making education more accessible.

There’s still a massive diversity gap in the tech industry – on average, only about 2% of their workers are African American, but more than 4% of all new computer science or computer engineering degrees were held by African Americans. We’ll work together with the Rainbow PUSH Coalition to address this disconnect by providing more scholarships for industry-integrated educational programs such as GalvanizeU.

At Galvanize, our goal is for all our students to receive an amazing job offer after graduation. Our gSchool programs currently have a 96% placement rate, and we’ll work closely with industry partners to ensure that recipients of this scholarship get placed at great companies after they’ve finished the program.

Galvanize will work together with Reverend Jesse Jackson, the RainbowPUSH Coalition, and other diversity advocates such as BUILDUP and the East Oakland Youth Development Center (EOYDC) to select students for this scholarship. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis, and interested candidates can apply here.

To learn more about GalvanizeU and other scholarships that are available, head to

Datameer_29943 via Inc