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Virtual RubyConf 2020
November 17, 2020, Online, Houston, TX, USA
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Keynote - Ryann Richardson
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  • Description
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About speaker

Ryann Richardson
Founder at Ellington Lafayette Co.

About the talk

In 2018, Ryann Richardson made history, becoming the 50th Anniversary Miss Black America. Before that, the tech marketer-turned-founder and Diversity & Inclusion advocate spent 10 years building brands and culture for companies spanning early-stage start-ups (Victor) to billion-dollar "unicorns" (Uber) to the Fortune 500 (T-Mobile/Deutsche Telekom). Her work earned her a spot as the youngest honoree on Savoy Magazine’s list of Most Influential Black Executives in Corporate America and set her on the path to discovering her unique purpose as a champion for underrepresented voices. Now, in her second act as a founder, her company Ellington Lafayette Co. is building a new type of tech incubator, focusing exclusively on start-ups that drive social equity for women and communities of color. Ryann travels the US as a Keynote Speaker giving talks “Authenticity and Assimilation”, “Taking Up Space as Women and POC” and “The Politics of Race, Beauty, and Power.”

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Hello, welcome to the clothes and clean out the end of day one. I'm here to introduce Ryan Richardson. Our keynote speaker for the afternoon, Ryan is a political activist near and the 50th anniversary of Miss Black America. She spent a decade in the tech industry and held leadership roles at Uber and Victor. She found a co-founded execthread a networking platform for executives and founded. Ellington Lafayette company. A tech incubator with a focus on supporting women, people of color and other marginalized communities. Her 2019. Ted Talk

exam of The Duality of beauty and intelligence. It's a great talk today. She's going to talk with us about what is you did by technology and Innovative and with that, how are uniforms Ryan? Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much for the warm introduction. It's the end of day. One, you've almost made it to send again. My thanks and thank you to the whole thing working behind the scenes, and a thank you to all her. Because even in normal circumstances, jump

all around before the 19th year of Ruby, it's truly an honor for me to join you as your closing keynote speaker on day one. I'm really thankful for your attendance. So now we get started. I should have known that. I am not a programmer. Or developer or software engineer. I've actually written probably fewer than twenty lines of code in my entire life and at least half of those contain some type of syntax error today. I will teach you absolutely nothing about technical writing or statistically optimal ATI timeout

or the Singleton Marshall Marshall. In fact, I don't even know what that is and can clearly better start. Barely say it. However, and acted as an entrepreneur, is Barrett mentioned in his intro, and I spent the better portion of the last company standing, firm early-stage Ventures to unicorn startups, to the Fortune 500, introducing products, and Solutions in tampon reshaping Industries, ecosystems and communities. Through technology, I started my career as a marketer before, I've all to focus on operations, strategy

and executive leader. Specialized emphasis on our Industries responsibility and net contribution to social equity and ages ago. People to actually go places they flee I spent a year traveling the country speaking in corporate and academic settings and conferences, just like this, having discussions on the intersection of Technology culture and social impacts. So while I do not at all report to be able to offer much insight into how you as programmers,

I do hope that this session will help to inspire some of the what and why behind your work now, generally, when giving a talk like this, when I left be able to see your beautiful faces and more importantly, to be able to hear your voices, and I would typically throw questions to you in the audience, Matthew to break from all of the basic classroom decor and more. Did you ever learn in elementary school and just yell your answer back to me? Obviously, we can't quite do that today but instead

chat feature, that is in the right-hand corner of your screen stuff, get your fast fingers ready because throughout the time, I'll be asking for your input and I want you to do otherwise gets very awkward. Why do we try this out? One time and make sure it work and playing some stuff in the chat right now. But let's start with a role. So I'll let you know. I'm coming to you from my quarantine bunker here in Brooklyn. New York, jump into the chat box. Let me know where you're watching, Rubicon from today and

Maybe 30 seconds to that. I don't know, man. I'm not seeing places. Okay, there we go. Dco Berlin. Fully counter coming in fast. Atlanta, Dallas. I think I saw another Brooklyn. Hey neighbor. All right. Oh my gosh. More, DC Ottawa. Nashville, Italy. Oh, heck. Yeah. So it looks like it's working and we're going to get this show on the road with the last bit of housekeeping out before we start, at the end of this pop. Definitely wanted to make sure we left enough time for discussion around the concept that will bring us here.

Right here, I should be playing at it. You can use that feature throughout my top. Get your questions in early and then they're going to join us at the end of tomorrow. Fantastic. I think you all these thirty thousand foot view of my career Daiquiri. That's far. Which is really just been an exercise in following whatever fascinated me at any chance. For the last several years, I've been fascinated by product Innovation and find that. I don't necessarily mean the hardware to software

platforms and algorithms and data Aztec Creator. What's the things? We don't ship until actually impact on the world? That's the real product. And I'm particularly interested right now. In Innovation that came out in the United States. In the early 20th century of the latter, half of what we considering all the Second Industrial Revolution. There is one specific that I regard above all others and it happened a hundred and twelve years ago in October of 1908 and it changed America.

Not so much in that grandiose. So completely nebulous way that they kept Company by to talk about changing America button. Real tangible evidence, is this moment of how Americans lived created a whole new industry? Head to the chat box, guys, give me your guesses. What moments in history am I talking about from 112 years ago? In October of 1908? I'm seeing some come in the fax machine. Probably not 19/10 / 2 The radio air conditioning phone. Car light. Come on. You got something there, girl.

The telegraph flying indoor plumbing intresting, but definitely did change the world. Know a couple people already. Put this in here and I haven't called it out. Yes. Block people are writing. It always makes me feel great and so she yelled back to me on October 1st, 1908, Henry, Ford. Ford Motor Company released the country to what is now a popular misconception? The Model T was not the first American Automobile, but I was not being that by other automakers. Before I go any further on this fine,

as you reflect on this talk, please not. Don't bother yourself after the man. Let's just focus on what contribution was ever produced on an assembly line on a vertically. Integrated one at that. It introduced all new efficiencies into the manufacturing process. That's for workers more and more manufacturers from nearly every industry. Adopt a good market for many of the highly valuable skill jobs that constituted the first automobile priced at a price point that made it a teen

and buy 1924. 3500 HD, Is revolutionary and so that revolutions bird, the creation of the US Auto industry, as we know it and other, automakers took on the Ford Model, right? Creating your own affordable mass-market automobiles, that were design, of course Model T. 10 years in to his production. Run nearly half of all automobiles in America were Maltese. This car changed where and house Americans lived. It allowed those in rural communities to create working day-to-day connections with d course, is it allowed for accidents, frankly of industrial workers

and their families understanding personal Mobility into the hands, African-American effectively, created the suburbs. It was a precursor to the shopping list. Where to point to school all new access medical treatment and support of the interstate highway system Forest product of innovation, wasn't actually a car at all. It was a whole, why? Why we talkin about this is. And if I from me, like the kind of guy who sent her Friday nights watching, History, Channel documentary with industrial Innovative

and economic revolution revolution to fundamentally change the way and quality of life. While our contemporary discourse, Joel categorizes. This moment is part of the digital Revolution, is technically started in 1947. I'm confident that recognize the moment about economic Revolution today, that is now the richest industry in the history of money. In fact, as of June of this year, there are three companies. They're worth more than the combined value of the

entire us oil and gas industry back to the chat box. Three company, right? They're worth more than the entire us oil and gas industry. You know, Wilder live in now. Okay, I see you. Lots of good gases, Google. Several times as he Tesla there. Okay, alphabet. Facebook Coca-Cola. Interesting because, of course, I'll text after Titan, Apple Microsoft, and Amazon, as of June 2020 worth more than the entire combined value of US oil and gas industry professionally in one of those nebulous, the Microsoft

interview of how our work changes, the world are really the very foundations of the corporate culture. And for a while that we were actually shaping the future and I fell in love with the potential to leave the type of Women and people of color, do some other marginalized communities. But what I learned and what I was hypersensitive to as a woman of color in the reality, that in our modern Innovation Revolution, just as in the economic and Industrial Revolution, before the industry that will change the future

that breaks Cycles. Marshmallow station we are changing America, but I frankly are conflicted and not of the bulk of taxes, believe that failure to a multitude of factors including education and resources for marginalized communities, that then lead to a lack of representation. Exceptionally that shaped our nation has sex with more, informed perspective. Meant marginalized people continue to get left behind and its economic and Industrial Revolution. Now and leaders and contributors to

every industry. It's highlighted a series of gross. Inequities in the US and abroad, which is only been exacerbated by a merciless pandemic and then prayed on a repeating Loop Drive 24-hour news cycle. At this point, Brian Marshall, I don't need this time, is very unusual. Decade. We as a community have invested billions into Technologies, all be a novel technology upgrades to the lies. They already got. The cinnamon challenge is made by our sector. Our industry comes

equipped with the power, to thaw, for many of the most significant and prevailing problems, our community. And all of us who grew up in the 90s or 2000s fireman, now with great power. I'm great responsibility. The responsibility, as leader has to be to be intentional and how we use our power, how we leverage, our asked us what we create with our time and our talent. Our responsibility is to accept that industry. And our capitalistic Society is like, we always will be the primary driver of Social

and cultural government in philanthropy will only ever follow are providing supplementary support for our primary impact shoulder. The burden of responsibility to recognize the elements American life, that feel our neighbors are friends, and the perfect strangers, that made our community pool and to innovate their responsibility developers, Founders, entrepreneurs and leaders, build a future. That finally delivers on text promise to be a great equalizer. Now, I'm not advocating for

all of us to something, invest all of our time and interest into charitable Works. In fact, quite the contrary, I am challenging all of us to invest ourselves and our profitable commercial product Solutions, in Enterprises. That actually means something. We don't need more dating apps. So sorry if you were working on developing a dating app, and I think we're all well service by the on-demand, everything economy. At this point, we need technologist Building Solutions for social economic and political equity.

this year reminded us that reminded us that there is rather a dire in common wealth Gap, that adversely impact communities of color and undermines their ability to withstand even minor economic volatility. It underscored the gross disparities in healthcare outcomes that lives just unfortunate numbers of those lost. To covid-19 is not so simple for Millions living in rural communities. In urban homes, reliable internet, or does Isis to do remote learning.

From the quality of Education to the how to access to housing to the interactions between police and black communities. Are countless areas of cultural in a quality affecting position quality of life bit. If you would like to find some interesting new project Partnerships, joint ventures this week. You might find the spark of inspiration to God's next 10 years, your career or even as your life's work. While you're here or they are all around the world

wherever you are on your computer, Ruby. Come We further enriching your knowledge base and your skill-set to utilize Solutions, businesses scale, back out to your day today. This is my challenge to you. Be mindful of the power of Innovations, totally reshaped the way of life for the stakeholders that an impact. Remember, you're unique responsibilities. as a developer, a programmer, a leader and entrepreneur to build an industrial revolution, actually matter and you go home, if you feeling truly, ambitious, find a way to build your

own model C, Thanks guys. It has been a pleasure to deliver this talk. I think Barrett is going to hop back in to join me in the question. All right. Let's see while we wait for the questions to fill in. I've actually got a couple. Right now. I did see one in the chat talking about kind of balance of innovation vs. Working 40 hours a week and and I was going to ask. If you think there's a trade-off where do you think we sacrifice happiness, or get a down time or whatever? For Innovation, like favoring work, over other aspects of life so perhaps a a one-two punch

of a questionnaire. Yeah, absolutely right grammar, but I remembered money. And that's not necessarily about work-life balance for a blind or what. But you are there's a, there's a lot of what we are doing. Very good. I've got another question. Is Kevin and I just a reminder, y'all feel free to tag questions in and we'll get them. What are some good ways to come up with ideas? That can be both profitable and contribute pasta things to society thing I do when I need to remember something,

what a my building and for whom my building, right? First. Where are they have? A greater impact outside to the bottom line. We may want to question whether or not I will I will it rather change or improve and if not why my building it I think those are really wide in developing countries. Are invested in Social Equity, change responsibility. All right. How can we make sure that the efficiency gains we get from software are spread equally to everyone, but especially to

those whose jobs are negatively, impacted or made obsolete technology, that is going to have different populations in the song. I mentioned leaders of Industry hunting blind spot. We all have blind spots. Likely all the same on one area of life that everyone in the impact on those who are at the table. All right, it's not just that we have plenty of delivery, dating Car Hire apps. It's that apps make a few people, well off, but don't help the delivery driver stuff. Do we need changes to how we organize the

businesses and products to make the, the center workers act. Would. Absolutely, I agree and I think that that's the policy issues that we seen either lawsuit ballot initiative. Cross the country has certainly across the globe most people, right? Imagine many people live streamer very well aware of the ongoing battle that Uber and Lyft wage for years. And years. I was about to the classification of their workers. It's probably the fiercest battle in California and this is one area where I said as much as industry and

government workers who are actually in a manner that is reflective. We've seen a lot of examples of tech products features that simply should not have been dust because of the harm they caused off and already marginalized users. How can you create a culture? Amongst your friends and co-workers that prioritizes harm prevention and production while building Tech? And I hate to borrow some of the answer that I already gave, but it's kind of important. I am a huge fan when I speak to

diversity. Certainly, I'd like to see a background but it's also important. A great level of thought that should be brought into account, your organization, who are thinking about how late is Grace at the background socioeconomic status. What are some companies / products that you feel her models in Tech Force? Really making a difference in marginalized groups. Interesting things right now. So I can appear to be eating something that's solely to solve and cultural and social issues over. At least it's out of her room

all day. So don't quote me on that list impact that seeks to Aurora's focus on driving social Equity through Mobility Solutions. Berkeley underserved communities. So that's also helpful to great resources to look at. But what I should be doing this work, whether it is at a really Grand scale or a smaller school and does not necessarily have an impact. During our social Equity component to the businesses, may be a great opportunity for you to initiative in that

thing I and leverage. The existing infrastructure has a ERG that are already signs before its diverse stakeholders in the world outside. Can we talk about how it's impossible working for tech companies? Big or small to have a say in working conditions that affect our lives or what our work is used for unless people unionize Franklin are the only thing that we have to influence. I'm going to do much. There was a head of diversity and inclusion but not someone who is necessarily empowered to do his job.

Australian power to do the most with his role on because you are our decision-makers women. Talk about these challenges. Indo tissues Roofing program for the entire presentation and trainings Roundtable discussion to get the work done. I'm not sure I see Chris and internal activist group. Thank you so much for inspiring talk. I think it's such a beautiful proposition of doing good to technology. I wonder how you think about that within more complex systems where where money comes from and legislation that seemingly has more impact on communities, life

factors that contribute to prevailing inequities, obviously where the money is coming from in 2020. And I hope that we might win from a business perspective when people across the country, Responsibility of the companies they invest their hard-earned dollars and quite frankly on Corporate America. Under historically for Generations will no longer be inspected. So there is a financial or give us the game plan. Okay, what are your thoughts on the ability for companies to really create structure?

Structural Equitable change versus public policy, definition of wood and investors driver returns undermine focus on a more Equitable social infrastructure, I'm thinking of misinformation on social platforms as an example of mismatches. Mismatched incentives, add-ons. We are not going to be for the foreseeable future especially with the gridlock that we are experiencing from a national level. I'm politically much consensus on, frankly. Anything from politicians

should never be wearing investors interests on with the desire to be responsible and contribute in a positive manner to social Equity investors, who are Alright, I'll see, this will be the last question coming in, on final five minutes here. What if we build a product that was shaking industry? Too large, I'm stuck in its ways. What what does it take to gain traction? Over these in the seat industry Giants as a small? Start-up question, that is specific to you how we do products.

Dozens of case studies from the last Wednesday 5 to 10 years, alone, organizations, that are now or Airbnb that are fundamentally disrupted, a stodgy old Livery to give you a 10-point. All right. Would you actually have a couple of minutes? So I had one of the question that I had written just to prime the pump, but I'll close with it. Are there any innovations that are changing our world in ways that make you uneasy? Uneasy right now, I don't raise your hand,

quarantine downtime, the impact of social, networking platform, not just on public discourse around, public policy and politics and generally the ways in which they are understanding. A fundamental fact from this information really terrified of our machines about real. in a machine that has gone off the deep end of the world into the impact of Yeah, we watch that the other night. And I mean, Oh my goodness. All right. Well I appreciate you talking to us to close this day out and I've really enjoyed getting to meet you and I wish we were able

to talk more in person but thank you. Thank you so much again for the Excellence. Right. Hello everyone, that we hope that you thoroughly enjoy your first day. Thank you. All speakers sponsor a small view as participants. We have some closing announcement for you. All right. The workshop on Thursday, has a cap for the maximum number of participants and it has a fairly lengthy wait list so you can still register to be on the waitlist but will be checking

names for that one and you should manage your expectations accordingly. If you miss the talk, you can go back to the session link or you can select the session on the upper left-hand corner where it says schedule and watch the replay. I was doing that earlier. In fact remember to follow the conference on Instagram and Twitter at at Ruby cop or on Facebook at ribakoff 2020. And use the hashtag Ruby cops 2020. Yes the Galaxy. If you would like to perform a talent

or tell us a story tomorrow during the conference fun session, please let garador I know. ASAP tomorrow, may be too late but that's our five minutes long and I know that you all have some serious talent and lots of skills. No slackness necessary for that, by the way. Okay, virtual 5K tomorrow. Something that we try to do at each. One of their conferences is a unofficial 5K and this time it's even less official, go run around and walk around and do some jumping, jacks, whatever. And then tweets, Instagram, Force picture with hashtag, Ruby, count 5K,

and just have fun. A 5k or 30 minutes, right? There's also like that however much you can do in 30 minutes or less write as a no speaking about tonight. I would know that we are not going to be monitoring slack after hours. So from the close of the session until 10:30 a.m. Central Time, tomorrow will not be moderate. Okay, so I got to welcome you all this morning and now I get to say good night. We'll see y'all tomorrow. At 11 a.m. Central

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