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Day 4: People of color impacting the social web – Brett Anitra Gilbert, Ph.D. – #29DaysofDiversity


As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. For the past two years for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.

For 2012 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also ask a question to where each featured person could share their passion with others. For 28 Days of Diversity 2012 each post/person will answer the question “What motivates you to become successful?”

For the next 29 days since 2012 is a leap, come back to visit and/or to see who’s on the list. For day 4, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:

Brett Anitra Gilbert, Ph.D

Brett Anitra Gilbert, Ph.D.

Twitter: @profgilbert



Brett is an assistant professor in the Department of Management and Global Business at Rutgers University. She is the very first Entrepreneurship PhD graduate from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. Her expertise is in geographic clusters, technology entrepreneurship and new venture performance. Her research was awarded a Kauffman Dissertation Fellowship in 2004, and was later selected as a finalist for the Heizer Award, which is given by the Academy of Management’s Entrepreneurship Division for outstanding dissertations in entrepreneurship.

In 2009, Brett was chosen as a Kauffman Junior Faculty Fellow, which is awarded to emerging entrepreneurship scholars. Of the 10 recipients to date, she is only the second woman to receive the award and the only African-American. Her expertise on clusters and technology entrepreneurship landed her a two-year gubernatorial appointment as an advisory committee member to the Texas Emerging Technology Fund from 2008-2010.

Brett’s research is currently published or forthcoming in several top management journals, and her most recently accepted manuscript, “Creative Destruction: Identifying its Geographic Origins” has been one of the top 10 most downloaded manuscripts in the Social Science Research Network for Entrepreneurship & Economics, since the manuscript’s release in December.
Brett teaches a Technology Ventures course to undergraduate and graduate students, and has also taught courses on creativity and innovation as well as general entrepreneurship. Students who have taken her courses are currently exploring ventures in industries as diverse as construction services, education, fashion and social media.

What motivates you to become successful?

I am motivated to be a good steward of the gifts and talents God has given me, and to use them to the best of my ability to fulfill my life’s purpose. ‘Success’ has been the natural byproduct of doing those two things, not really something I can say I consciously work to achieve.

You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on, and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.

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