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The Seventh Annual Tom Tom Founders Festival is a week-long celebration of innovators, visionaries, and artists who are shaping small cities. The Festival occurs at dozens of venues throughout downtown Charlottesville. 

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Friday, April 13 • 10:30am - 11:40am
The Founders Who Aren't: Inclusion in Entrepreneurship Now Open

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Eighty-nine percent of venture capital partners are male; 85% of those men are white. Unsurprisingly then, only 2.2% of venture capital went to startups run by women in 2017, and just 1% to black entrepreneurs. Companies run by black female founders account for just 0.2% percent of all deals.

Beyond lamenting these statistics, what can each of us do to level the playing field and unlock the enormous potential of overlooked innovators? This session is a safe, candid opportunity to discuss practical strategies for overcoming bias and founding a more equitable future.

avatar for Courtenay Siegfried

Courtenay Siegfried

Vice President of Communications, Alice
Courtenay leads Alice's external communication efforts, including marketing and public relations strategy, as well as impact partnerships. On the entrepreneurial front, Courtenay previously was owner and president of 20K Group, a global communications agency that worked with a diverse... Read More →

avatar for Chelsea Conrad

Chelsea Conrad

Creative Director, Causeway
Chelsea Conrad is the Creative Director at Causeway, a nonprofit social innovation studio in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Since 2014, Causeway has helped over 600 grassroots leaders develop and test their early-stage ideas so that they are prepared for growth. Chelsea is a graphic designer... Read More →
avatar for Shamaine Daniels

Shamaine Daniels

Councilwoman, City of Harrisburg, PA
Shamaine is a champion for the rights of women and migrants in the United States and abroad. Over the years she has served various underrepresented communities, with Lozano, et al v City of Hazleton being her most recognized case to date. In politics, she is the first Latina to be... Read More →
avatar for Knatokie Ford

Knatokie Ford

Founder & CEO, Fly Sci Enterprise
Dr. Knatokie Ford is Founder and CEO of Fly Sci Enterprise, an education and media consulting organization focused on leveraging the power of storytelling to promote social change, particularly in STEM fields. She recently completed service in the Obama Administration as a Senior... Read More →
avatar for desiree venn frederic

desiree venn frederic

Founder/Chief Creative Officer/Cultural Strategist, Combing Cotton Co./Local Merchant Independent Retailers Association
Desiree Venn Frederic is an agent of alternatives. The Sierra Leonean born writer, social entrepreneur, public speaker, educator and installation artist is inspired by her transnational experiences. Through her work, the thought leader explores the commons and commoning discourse... Read More →
avatar for Brad Wolverton

Brad Wolverton

Investigative Reporter, NerdWallet
Brad is part of NerdWallet’s public interest reporting team, whose goal is to uncover abusive practices in consumer finance. Since forming in December 2016, NerdWallet’s team has examined student loan scams, companies that have wrongly wrecked customers’ credit, and the country’s... Read More →

avatar for Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

Ewing Kauffman’s most enduring legacy to his community and the world is the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. He established the Foundation with the same sense of opportunity he brought to his business endeavors, and, with the same convictions. Kauffman wanted his foundation to... Read More →

Friday April 13, 2018 10:30am - 11:40am EDT
Second Street Gallery
  Entrepreneurship & Investment, Summit