Holy moly what a day full of wonderful people, great friendships, and awesome content. We had over 90 submissions for our call for proposals; 99% of them Ada's List members. We selected 23 talks, 100% of them Ada's List members. And for the first time ever, we had 3 (!) tracks throughout most of the day - tech, workshops and product, and leadership. The feedback was really great - and actually people wished they'd been able to go to simultaneous talks.
So hey, way to go Adas on having some great things to say. Now, onto the day...
The Ada’s List Partner Network - a group of organisations who are committed to making their workplaces work for women and people of colour. (Join here)
The Ada’s List Board Channel - a private channel for NEDs & board members. We’re all about changing the tech industry to make it better and now we want to apply this focus to a new area - the boardroom. (Join here)
The whole day’s vibe can be summed up by these words from our co-founders’ welcome talk: leave the door open
+ the fact that our attendees kept telling us this was the friendliest & most welcoming tech event they had ever been to.
It was friendly - but also everyone knew their s***, talked about it, asked great questions, and helped everyone progress, together.
Now, onto the keynotes and panels...
First off was Kajal Odedra, UK Director, Change.org and Author, 'Do Something: Activism For Everyone'. She gave a fabulous talk 'We Should All Be Activists'. Her key takeaways:
Our afternoon keynote was long-time Ada's List member, Patrice John-Baptiste from FIRST UK who talked to us about "Building more than robots: Tackling self-exclusion in STEM." So many great takeaways from this talk - most importantly, know that self-exclusion starts early so make sure to support your kiddos (or your friends' kiddos) and encourage them along.
Our closing panel was a mishmash of wonderful people all talking about one of my favourite topics: Doing The Right Thing and doing important work matters. It was a panel discussion and pep rally for tech for good with Deborah Okenla (CEO YSYS), Pauline Roche (CEO RnR) and Elle Tweedy (Design Lead, FutureGov).
“Organisations come to me and say diverse talent is hard to reach - I say to them, no you are the one who’s hard to reach. Think about where you show up, where you host events” - Deborah
There's so much more to talk about...Like let's never have an all male panel again? Perhaps next year we'll invent a real time turner? How about more people going to conferences by themselves and being ok with it? And so many awesome talks from the conf that we'll have to cover elsewhere.
And now, a huge, sincere thank you to our sponsors, without whom none of the above would be possible.
Spotify (this is their second time sponsoring #adaslistconf!)
FutureGov (this is their FOURTH time sponsoring #adaslistconf! )
Bursary Ticket + Travel Sponsor
Non-alcoholic drinks reception
Thanks again to everyone - our sponsors, our volunteers, our speakers, and our attendees for making it an awesome day - stay tuned for 2020 Conf info!