In recognition of the many impactful ways that women play a role in the Gulf South tech community, we have expanded the original event to offer awards in 4 distinct categories.
While LookFar is the producer of the Ada Lovelace Awards, all nominations came from members of the community. Nearly 100 women were nominated, representing all six Gulf South states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Texas, and Florida.
To ensure fairness in the judging process, we chose judges from outside of the qualifying region. We chose one judge per category who each possesses similar traits and accomplishments as the nominees.
We created 4 pillars for the judges to score each nominee on: Impact, Innovation, Leadership, and Community. It was essential to us that the selection process was more than a mere popularity contest or a quick assessment of who has had the most financial success or who has worked at the most well-known company.
The Digital Marketer category was judged by Ayumi Bennett, founder of Startup Southerner, an inclusive media platform that explores the dynamics of the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the South.
The winner of the Computer Engineer category was Kesha Williams, a software engineer at Chick-fil-A Corporate with over 20 years of experience who invented a predictive policing machine learning algorithm called S.A.M. (Suspicious Activity Monitor) that predicts the likelihood of crime. Compared to the “precrime” system from Minority Report, Kesha intentionally removed race as an attribute used by S.A.M. to predict crime, and she has spoken extensively, sharing findings on how machine learning can remove human biases from policing, thus making racial profiling a thing of the past.
Allison Luzader - New Orleans, LA - GE Digital
Andrea Long - Mobile, AL - Rural Sourcing Inc.
Brandi Mobley - New Orleans, LA - Lucid
Caitlin Lowe - New Orleans, LA - iSeatz
Chloe Frank - New Orleans, LA - LookFar
Dawn M. Davis - New Orleans, LA - NASA, John C. Stennis Space Center
Diana Marquez - New Orleans, LA - Kickboard
Emily Ashley - New Orleans, LA - Boundless Spatial, Inc.
Jaelle Sheuerman - New Orleans, LA - Tulane University
Jona Moore - Austin, TX - frog
Kate MacDermott - New Orleans, LA - Equal To
Katherine Patch Harris - New Orleans, LA - CotingaSoft
Katie Delgado - New Orleans, LA - GE Digital
Katy Evans - New Orleans, LA - GE / Baker Hughes
KD Wilson - Mobile, AL - Rural Sourcing Inc.
Kesha Williams - Atlanta, GA - Chick-fil-A Corporate
Laura Hill - New Orleans, LA - Revelry
Lauren Windsor - New Orleans, LA - Equal To
Lucy Warburton - New Orleans, LA - Zlien
Nichole Pahl - Lafayette, LA - Waitr
Rosemary Butt - Mobile, AL - Rural Sourcing Inc.
Sam Kapila - Austin, TX - The Iron Yard
Sierra Bintliff - New Orleans, LA - Turbosquid
Yvonne Lo - Birmingham, AL - TicketBiscuit
Wendy L. Wise - Atlanta, GA - CNN at Turner
The winner of the Tech Founder category was Sevetri Wilson, who in 2016 launched ExemptMeNow, a web-based subscription platform that has streamlined the filing process for people looking to start nonprofit organizations. In 2010, Sevetri's work received the National Nobel Prize for Public Service, The Jefferson Award, and was further recognized by the U.S. Senate for her work on behalf of first generation college students. She is also the founder of Solid Ground Innovations, LLC, a full service strategic communications, management and consulting firm.
Anna Finch - New Orleans, LA - Realized Designs
Brittney Greene - New Orleans, LA - The Host
Brooke Battle - Birmingham, AL - Swell Fundraising
Carolyn Fries - Pensacola, FL - Guided Particle Systems, Inc.
Jennifer Skejellum - Birmingham, AL - RunTime Computing Solutions
Jewel Burks - Atlanta, GA - Part Pic
Leona Christy - New Orleans, LA - Catalyst:Ed
Lovey Wakefield - New Orleans, LA - Ecommerce Solution Group
Nicole Rock - New Orleans, LA - Magic Bank
Paula Estrada de Martin, Ph.D. - New Orleans, LA - Baker Donelson's Louisiana Life Sciences and Technology Practice
Sara Williamson - Birmingham, AL - Venture for America
Sarah Parcak - Birmingham, AL - GlobalXplorer
Sevetri Wilson - New Orleans, LA - ExemptMeNow
Sheena Allen - Jackson, MS - Sheena Allen Apps
Sondra Brown - New Orleans, LA - MDRG Inc.
Tanveer Patel - Birmingham, AL - Concert Care
Vickie Robinson Patterson - Pensacola, FL - Invictus Knowledge Institute
The winner of the STEM Educator category was Mariana Williamson, a mechanical engineer at Valero Energy Corporation who immigrated to the U.S. from Venezuela at age 18. Over the past three years, Mariana has started a STEM program for under-served children in St. Bernard Parish. Known as Invention Convention, the program provides hundreds of fifth grade students an annual opportunity to connect with STEM by allowing them to invent new or improve existing objects to expand their critical thinking skills.
Alana Walker - New Orleans, LA - Electric Girls
Allie Segura - New Orleans, LA - St. George's Episcopal School
Candalece Lambert - New Orleans, LA - Collegiate Academies
Cherie Melancon Franz - New Orleans, LA - Thinkerella
Clarice Richardson - Metairie, LA
Dr. Debra Chapman - Mobile, AL - University of South Alabama
Élan Jones - New Orleans, LA - NOLA CODE
Flor Serna - New Orleans, LA - Electric Girls
Katie Evans - Ruston, LA - Louisiana Tech University
Korinna Sanchez - New Orleans, LA - Puentes
Kristen Barrett - Baton Rouge, LA - Louisiana State University
Kristen Reeves - Baton Rouge, LA - Louisiana Women in Technology
Lindsey Keith-Vincent - Ruston, LA - Louisiana Tech University
Magdalene McArthur - New Orleans, LA - Operation Spark
Mariana Williamson - New Orleans, LA - Valero
Maya Ramos - New Orleans, LA - Electric Girls
Dr. Michelle Sanchez - New Orleans, LA - Tulane University
Olivia Sabo-Rush - New Orleans, LA - Operation Spark
Dr. Sarah Lee - Columbus, MS - Mississippi State University
Serena White - Monroe, LA - Monroe City School District
Dr. Tamika Duplessis - New Orleans, LA - Delgado Community College
The winner of the Digital Marketing category was Adele Tiblier, who has been working in the Internet industry since 1994. She currently serves as Director of Marketing at zlien, and has propelled the growth of many other local tech companies over the past two decades. Adele has played an active leadership role in the tech community, serving as moderator for the Online Ads Discussion Board (one of the first Internet boards regarding online advertising), a mentor at Startup Weekend, logistics coordinator for Collision Conference, and a featured speaker at national conferences.
Adele Tiblier - New Orleans, LA - Zlien
Alessandra Madrid - New Orleans, LA - ARPR
Alison Zeringue - New Orleans, LA - Search Influence
Allyson Seitzler - New Orleans, LA - Webtyde Internet Marketing
Amanda LaBella - New Orleans, LA - Tulane University
April Dupre - New Orleans, LA - Footprints To Fitness
Ashley Boggs - Atlanta, GA - Deposco
Beth McClean - Gulf Breeze, FL - AppRiver
Blair Broussard - New Orleans, LA - ARPR
Daniela Capistrano - New Orleans, LA - DCAP Media
Desiree Onteveros - New Orleans, LA - Badass Balloon Co.
Franziska Pirkl - New Orleans, LA - Spera Law Group
Gretchen Lynn - New Orleans, LA - Zlien
Jillian Kossman - Austin, TX - formerly LookFar
Jordan Cranch - New Orleans, LA - FSC Interactive
Joy "Alegria Monique" Pizarro - Houston, TX - Slay Smarketing Group
Julia Ballard - New Orleans, LA - Silicon Bayou News
Kate Russell - New Orleans, LA - Casual Fridays, Inc.
Katy Sandusky - New Orleans, LA - Kay Lain Public Relations
Lydia Galligan Mulero - New Orleans, LA - BigEasy.com
Maggie Robert - New Orleans, LA - Online Optimism
Maren Marina - New Orleans, LA - T-Mobile
Margaux Krane - New Orleans, LA - New Orleans Museum of Art
Marianne Loes - Mobile, AL - M-Cubed Solutions LLC
Mary Silva - New Orleans, LA - FSC Interactive
Mollie Durbin - Birmingham, AL - TicketBiscuit
Serah Ridolfo - New Orleans, LA - Get Online NOLA
Siobhan Lidon - New Orleans, LA - FSC Interactive
Tallie Merritt - New Orleans, LA - FSC Interactive
Taylor Kincaid - New Orleans, LA - Online Optimism
Val McKay - New Orleans, LA - Smashing Boxes
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