Fed Women In Technology: Mentoring Women Towards STEM

The Federal Reserve of KC Women In Technology (FedWIT) Diversity and Inclusion Summit was held on Wednesday, September 30, from 3-6 pm, at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (The KC Fed). The KC Fed and the Money Museum share one of KC’s high precipices along side of the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial and in view of the KC business skyline.



Mentoring Women towards STEM was the theme at the Diversity and Inclusion summit, which is one of a series of events focussing on Women In Technology. Moderator Andrea Hendricks, assistant vice president, deputy director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion at The KC Fed, explained that the summit format, versus a more formal conference format, was designed to engage the participants and take them (us) to a different level or height in the discussion of Women in Technology.


House Cleaning

I get it that some may not understand the focus on house cleaning posts, recently. The fact is, before I came back to the states from living in Ghana, West Africa, I realized that for me, the best way to introduce change anyplace else, was to make sure that I had my own house in order.

IM000055When it comes to setting things in order, two heads are better than one.

I often found myself to be in situations where others were looking at me for lifestyle  solutions. After a while, I began to question, who was I to tell anybody anything? Besides dealing with the imposter syndrome, I was wanting to make sure that I was walking that walk that I was talking about to others.

When it comes to setting things in order, two heads are better than one. This doesn’t take much discussion.

Your word has that much more power and impact when it’s authentic.

Never Spray Alone – “Getting Rid of Bugs” – Part II

No Centi smallerOnce you get a bug problem identified, don’t be ashamed! Be aware. Be diligent. I originally used this barrier building procedure while living overseas in Africa, and continued maintenance kept out most pests, including lizards (yes, lizards) and mosquitos.

“Do your homework…”

Do your homework to track and to get rid of bugs. There is a new “organic pesticide” company with quarterly plans in our area. What that means is, they lure you in with a low initial fee and then they make you sign a contract to commit to a quarterly (subscription) fee system that adds up to hundreds of dollars over a year. I chose this option because I wanted quick, professional help with an organic solution, not because I felt it was a reasonable plan.

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Never Spray Alone: “Organic Pesticides” – Part 1


centipedeHere I was listening to “Never Eat Alone” by Keith Ferrazzi, finishing off an unexpectedly delicious bowl of Power Oatmeal from Panera’s – while eating in the library alone yet surrounded by others – of course. What led me to this pc-station in the local library on this early, cloudy and sleepy Tuesday morning (with a somewhat noisy photographic shoot taking place in the background)?

Had I done my research?

The day before, I’d had the yard and the house sprayed with “organic” pesticides. I left the house as soon as I could, after it was sprayed. What I didn’t count on was the way this organic product would leave my stomach upset and my head woozy, overnight and one day later. I could not get out of the house fast enough!

Had I done my research? No, not really, and the result was me, and my somewhat sensitive immune system saying, “What were you thinking? Were those sporadic ant, spider, occasional centipede and fruit flies sightings really such a problem?”

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Top 10 Picks: VOX Series with Angela Hurt and Kate Nielsen

Here are my Top 10 conversational picks from the evening with Kate Nielsen (KN) and Angela Hurt (AH) during Athena League VOX Speaker Series, June 19 at Polsinelli’s on the Plaza.

VOX Speakers Kate Nielsen (On Tap) and Angela Hurt (Veracity)

VOX Speakers Kate Nielsen (On Tap) and Angela Hurt (Veracity)

1. Background Info

(KN) – “I always wanted to make a difference.”    After coming from a non-profit background, “I got burnt out and sick of not being paid.”

(AH) – “I came from a town so small, me and my sisters played baseball in the most coveted positions, pitcher and shortstop,” and never really had a problem with competing with guys.

2. Risk of Leaving/Being Laid Off

(KN) – Being laid off “was the best thing that could have happened to me.” Meanwhile, talk to the company, “they could become an advocate.”

(AH) – A friend made it easy for me to make a decision (to leave). He asked me, “What do you have to lose? … I know 5 companies would hire you tomorrow.”

Questions from the audience

Questions from the audience

3. Conquering Gender Stereotypes

(AH) – Get a great network. (This isn’t gender specific) I could give you 5 bankers who if you have a solid business plan, they know how to get a return on investment.

(AH) – I’m not risk adverse at all. I make very quick decisions, very fast. The women I hang around with, I don’t see them being risk adverse.

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Get Your Brag On with Athena League VOX

 “Athena League serves as a catalyst to foster and empower aspiring and established female entrepreneurs by providing them with the community and support necessary to succeed.” – Athena League mission

The Athena League VOX speaker series has done it again. VOX is inspiring the city’s emerging league of female entrepreneurs, as well as a good number of male entrepreneurs (kind of like the sly guys who joined Home Economics and dance classes in another era). If it sounds like I’m bragging about VOX, it’s because I am.

On Thursday, February 20, from 5:30-7:30 p.m., Athenas and friends met at KU’s award-winning, Hemenway Innovation Center, named for former KU chancellor Robert Hemenway that was built (under budget) to expand KU’s research profile. It was a great venue for the evening’s biotech speakers. Props to BioKansas for tantalizing the entrepreneurial palates in attendance.

Athena League’s VOX speaker series featured two uniquely successful, collaborators in Bio-Science technology: Sara Mary Hall (SMH), co-founder of Orion BioScience, and Maria Flynn (MF), president and CEO of Orbis Bioscience. Both shared experiences  unique to their careers. They were moderated by Athena co-founder Kristin Kenney, Tech and Startup attorney at Polsinelli @kristenkenney. The event was emceed by Athena co-founder Mary Noulles, a Triple-I marketing manager @mnoulles.

Here are some takeaways from the night:

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KC Film Festival 2013

There’s a serious renaissance going on in Kansas City. The Kansas City Film Festival is just one of the many attractions entertaining locals and visitors, for another season. The dates of the festival are Wednesday, April 10 to Sunday, April 14 at the functional Alamo Drafthouse Main Street Theatres, 14th and Main in downtown Kansas City.

This year’s film highlights include

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