“At the end of the day you have to go home to yourself. You have to be with yourself. So make sure what you’re doing in business is representative of who you are and that you feel comfortable and that you can stand behind your work.” ~ Kathryn Finney, Founder of Digitalundivided
Summary: Kathryn Finney is the founder and Managing Director of digitalundivided (DID), a social enterprise that fosters economic growth through the empowerment of Black and Latina women entrepreneurs using innovation as a tool. Named by Inc Magazine as one of the most influential women in tech, Finney has made her mark as a tech entrepreneur, social media visionary, “women in” advocate, investor, writer, and television correspondent. A White House Champion of Change and a past member of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE) appointed by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Kathryn started digitalundivided after selling her company, The Budget Fashionista, one of the first lifestyle blogs. Since 2013, DID has impacted over 2,000 people and helped raise $25MM in investments. Her pioneering research, “#ProjectDiane”, drew widespread buzz for disrupting the dialogue around women of color and tech entrepreneurship. The 16-page report was widely shared and covered (Forbes, CNN, Fast Company, etc.) for quantifying the often overlooked state of Black women in the tech entrepreneurship space and is impacting policy from state houses to the White House.
Industry: Technology & Entrepreneurship
Q: So, your experience with racial and gender bias led you to create digitalundivided, a social enterprise that aims to bridge the digital information gap for women and minorities through programs and initiatives. What are some recent projects you’ve initiated? on yfsmagazine.com
A: We have a series of events that we do, as well as a series of initiatives. Our most well-known event is FOCUS100, which is held the first week in October in New York City. It’s for companies founded or co-founded by black women in tech companies, VCs, angel investors, corporate entities and other folks who are just interested in the future of tech. We also produce a series called START that takes place in cities all around the country… START is a pipeline event to get folks into the tech pipeline and to start thinking about tech as a business and creating tech-enabled businesses.