15 Great Men & Women in Tech Forging the way!

15 Great Men & Women in Tech Forging the way!

By: Tahirah Wiley

Although technology consumes the world around us there still remains a huge gap in the inclusion of African-American entrepreneurs. Yet and still the lack of diversity in Silicon Valley has not stopped those with a mission to open the doors for the black community to not only be consumers but contributors. You are taking a look at present day “Black History”

This touches home here at Urban Freedom Magazine as we strive as well to break barriers in Black Owned Media by turning our digital publication into an interactive framework that we will be extending into 2018.

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Aaron Russell

San Francisco, CA


Aaron Russell is the Tech Lead within Facebook Edge Strategy Network Engineering team. Russell negotiates agreements covering internet interconnect, peering colocation, and content distribution services among many other tasks. He was also a speaker at the Afro Tech Conference 2017.  



Andrea Moore

San Francisco Bay Area, CA


Andrea Moore is the Founder and CEO of the organization Black Tech Woman(BTW). BTW is a community built for black women in the technology ecosystem to connect, learn, and grow. Moore currently is the WW Growth Lead for Apple since 2016. This position consists of recruiting and managing a team of five. She is also the one to execute partnerships with companies like Google, Samsung, Lyft, eBay, and More.



Angela Benton

San Francisco, CA


Angela Benton is the Founder and CEO of Black Web Media. Under Black Web Media she founded both the NewMeConference and the NewMeAccelerator. The goal for the company is to create a more diverse and inclusive economy in the internet world. Benton is a Magna Cum Laude graduate from Savannah College of Art and Design. She graduated with a B.A. in Visual Communications with a specialization in Digital Design.



Chris Bennett

San Francisco, CA

Chris Bennett is the CEO of Soldsie, a tech company that helps merchants to sell products through social media. Benett is also the CEO of Wonder school, which makes it easy for teachers to start a school out of their home, and also for those parents in need of finding those schools. Bennett graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Economics.




Courtney Eimerman-Wallace

Washington, DC


Courtney Eimerman-Wallace is a front-end developer, designer, and UX leader at the United States Digital Service team at the Department of Veterans Affairs. Eimerman-Wallace is the director of Technology for the company Color of Change.  Eimerman-Wallace stated she is dedicated to using technology to improve access to create opportunities for underrepresented communities. She also serves as a board member for LGBTTech Institute.




Dineo Seakamela

Greater Chicago Area

Dineo Seakamala is the COO of Black Tech Mecca, which translates to the brains of the Black Tech community. Seakamala is originally from the heart of South Africa. She stated on LinkedIn (which is a professional networking site) that her current goal is to “Make tech accessible to continental and diasporic Africans, by using data to define and retell the story of innovation in our communities.” Her ultimate intention is to establish an operational framework that creates a new generation of global Black Tech practitioners who challenge limiting social norms and break down stubborn, systematic barriers.




Erica Joy Baker

Oakland, CA


Erica Joy Baker is the Senior Engineer at Slack Technologies and the advocate for diversity and inclusion in tech. At Slack, Baker built the Native client build and release infrastructure. Baker began a career in tech over 15 yrs ago starting with Domain Administration at the University of Alaska statewide system.



Greg Greenlee

Cincinnati, OH

Greg Greenlee is the Founder of the Blacks in Technology organization. Greenlee works as a system and Network Engineer and has spent over 15 years in the information technology field. His experience includes networking, IT security, system administration, virtualization/cloud computing, and storage administration. The ultimate vision is to create an online technology hub where “knowledge and experiences can be shared, news and information can be obtained, relationships can be forged, and a community can grow.”




Hadiyah Mujhid

San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Hadiyah Mujhid is a software engineer and entrepreneur. Mujhid is the founder & Manager of HBCUvc, which has been awarded a Kauffman Foundation Inclusion, Open Grant. Mujhid has over 13 years of experience as a software engineer and has built web and mobile applications for startup and mid-size corporations.




Kaya Thomas

Staten Island, NY


Kaya Thomas created a mobile application as a way to encourage people to read the work of Black Authors. The directory contains more than 600 children’s and young adult fiction books. Thomas was honored in 2015 on BET's Black Girls Rock! an award show for educating people of color in technological and cultural literacy. She was also named one of Glamour magazine's 2016 College Women of the year. Her app is said to have more than 5000 users currently.



Kimberly Bryant

San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Kimberly Bryant is an electrical engineer who worked in the biotechnology field at Genentech, Novartis Vaccines, Diagnostics, and Merck. She is also the Founder of Black Girls Code. This camp was created, in thought of her daughter Kai, for girls of color to be introduced to computer science with the goal of building a new generation of coders. “We are creating a powerful community of women skilled and confident about what they can create in the workplace,” Bryant told USA Today. She stated she plans to reach 1 million girls by 2040.



Laura Weidman Powers

San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Laura Weidman Powers is the Co-Founder & CEO of Code 2040. Code 2040 places software engineering students of color internships with major tech companies and startup companies as well. Powers is a Harvard and Stanford MDA graduate. The John S. and James L Knight foundation gave CODE2040 a 1.2 million grant to assist with the expansion of the company.




Marian R Croak

Fair Haven, New Jersey

Marian R. Croak is the SVP at the AT&T Labs. She is also the creator of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Croak currently owns over 135 patents with many more that are under review. In 2013 she was inducted into the Women in Technology International's Hall of fame in recognition of her achievements in tech.




Tristan Walker

San Francisco, CA


Tristan Walker has been named as Ebony Magazine's 100 Most powerful people list, to name one of the few titles he has been honored with. Not to mention the Forbes 100 list. Walker is the Founder and Chairman of Code 2040. It is a program that matches high performing black & Latino undergraduate and graduate coders, and software engineering students with Silicon Valley startups for summer internships. Walker recently raised $24 million for his modern personal care line for people of color. He is a man on the move creating his own business “Bevel Brand”



Wayne Sutton

San Francisco, CA

Wayne Sutton has 14 years of experience in technology from various angles. Sutton has Co-Founded and/or worked alongside multiple non-profit organizations and programs in the tech world. One of those including the NewMe Accelerator, the first minority led startup accelerator/incubator in Silicon Valley, which was featured in CNN “Black in America 4”. He has been featured on a list of media sites, such as USA Today and TechCrunch, and was also recognized as one of the Silicon Valley 100 coolest people in tech. Sutton is currently one of the leading voices in diversity and inclusion in tech.