People of Color Impacting the Social Web


Technology, the internet and social media – are growing at a rapid pace. These industries have made “instant” millionaires. From Microsoft, to Google, to eBay, to Dell, to iTunes, to Amazon…there is no doubt that business is flourishing online. Corporations are shifting major advertising dollars from traditional media to online. But do they have the diverse staffs to help direct them? Do they know where to find them? Wayne Sutton is a trail blazer in technology and has highlighted 28 of the “best & brightest” people of color in diversity in the industry.

Thank you Wayne for including us. We are honored to be around folks who are talented in social media & technology and also share our multicultural background. www.socialmediaprsolutions.com

Amplify’d from socialwayne.com

Day 28: People of color impacting the social web – Navarrow Wright #28DaysofDiversity

28 Days of Diversity 2011
As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. Last year for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.

For 2011 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also address a topic that affects everyone. For 28 Days of Diversity 2011 each post/person will answer the question “How can we use technology to close the digital divide?” So for the next 28 days, come back to visit SocialWayne.com/tag/28daysofdiversity and 28daysofdiversity.com to see who’s on the list. For day 28, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:

Navarrow Wright

Navarrow Wright

Twitter: @navarrowwright

Website/Blog: Navarrowwright.com

Bio

Navarrow Wright is the CTO of Interactive One, Interactive One is a digital and print media company
focusing on the African-American and urban market. As CTO Wright is responsible for the technical strategy
of all the Interactive One online properties which include Hellobeautiful, The UrbanDaily, NewsOne, Elev8
and BlackPlanet. He is also responsible for the technical management of the Radio One Network’s radio
sites.

With more than 18 years experience in the technology and media industry, Wright has established himself as
someone who can conceptualize and develop advanced technology solutions for leading global organizations.
Wright’s unique understanding of the Internet space and ability to marry those technical advances with
consumer demand has placed him as one of the premier technology experts in Internet and media. He prides
himself on showing youth how technology can enable them to achieve their dreams. He speaks to youth
groups up and down the east coast for various organizations and was recently given a commendation from
the city of Newark for his work with events that have a positive impact on young people. He has made it
his mission to be a voice for technology adoption in underserved areas and to ensure that the entrepreneurial
spirit is developed in urban youth. Wright currently blogs about these issues on his site Navarrowwright.com.
His blog posts have been featured on blackweb20.com and the huffingtonpost.com. You can also follow him
on twitter @navarrowwright.

Navarrow Co-founded with Hip Hop Mogul, Russell Simmons to create a social media site catering to
the hip-hop perspective, Global Grind.com. With funding from Accel Partners, the primary investors of
Facebook, “Global Grind’s mission is to be a platform that allowed the urban audience to show its
depth and breadth,” said Navarrow Wright, founder of Global Grind “by allowing its talented and diverse
members a place to find all the content that’s important to them, and giving creative entrepreneurs a place
to monetize their content and showcase it to largest audience possible. This network will be a significant
value to advertisers who are eager to reach this unique audience in a targeted and meaningful way.” Wright
successfully launched the product and raised the series A round of capitol. Wright also launched a vertical ad
network and celebrity blogger network while at Globalgrind.

Before joining Global Grind, Wright was SVP of Technology for Medical Broadcasting Company, a division
of the Internet marketing firm Digitas Inc. Prior to that, he served as CTO of Viacom’s BET Interactive. At
BET.com he created and implemented new technologies growing the Web site 300%, making it the leading
entertainment online destination for African Americans. It was during his tenure at BET that Wright realized
there was a need for a platform to showcase and promote all the creative content that is available on the net,
as well as promote content that is most important to them in a unique way. Which began to shape that idea
that eventually became Globalgrind.com

Navarrow Wright has appeared on Run’s house, Irv Gotti’s show Gotti’s Way NPR’s News and Notes and
the Steve Harvey radio show. He was picked by Network Journal Magazine as of the their “ 40 Under forty”
professionals to watch in 2009 and selected by the Innovation Generation as one of the nation’s top 100
GenerationNEXT and Information Technology leaders. Wright holds a Bachelor of Science degree from
Rider University in Computer Science.

How can we use technology to close the digital divide?

I have believed for some time now that the key to closing the the digital divide is by working to increase adoption and showing African Americans that there are relevant experiences for them online. I believe many people don’t know the advantages that exist for them in the areas of education, healthcare and career growth online and if we were able to promote those things to this audience that would definitely make a difference. The way I believe to best use technology to achieve this is by utilizing the technology medium that is most prevalent among African Americans, wireless devices. Even though less than 50% of african americans currently have adopted broadband Internet at home, we are extremely active on mobile devices. It has also been proven that when we find experiences that appeal to us we can have significant impact on them like we have had on Twitter. So I believe if we created more products to increase engagement which can also encourage us to want to enjoy those experiences at home. Then we will see the divide begin to narrow.


You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on http://28daysofdiversity.com, http://socialwayne.com/category/28-days-of-diversity/ and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.

Posted on February 28, 2011 – by Wayne Sutton

Day 28: People of color impacting the social web – Marcia Wade Talbert #28DaysofDiversity

28 Days of Diversity 2011
As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. Last year for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.

For 2011 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also address a topic that affects everyone. For 28 Days of Diversity 2011 each post/person will answer the question “How can we use technology to close the digital divide?” So for the next 28 days, come back to visit SocialWayne.com/tag/28daysofdiversity and 28daysofdiversity.com to see who’s on the list. For day 28, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:

Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia Wade Talbert

Twitter: @newsgyrl

Website/Blog: www.BlackEnterprise.com

Bio

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise
Magazine. Before joining BlackEnterprise.com as an interactive reporter in 2008, she
freelanced with Black Enterprise for several years while working as the technical editor
at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became
an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and
enrichment. Her freelancing helped keep her stay current on issues pertaining to the
financial and business welfare of African Americans.

Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture with an emphasis in food science
from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from
Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the
editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper.

An avid photographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE
who interned for the publishing company as a college student.

How can we use technology to close the digital divide?

In many ways technology is both the great equalizer and the great divider because with
technology (WiFi, broadband, and a laptop or computer) low income individuals and
racial minorities are not limited by the boundaries of their habitations.

With these tools access to government forms, news, and services is easier; listings for job
openings are more equitably distributed; and it helps (to a small extent) to even out the
playing field for small disadvantaged businesses competing against huge multinational
corporations.

At the same time, even if the National Broadband Plan is successful in connecting
America through high speed internet that alone will not solve the racial inequities of
career advancement in the technology sector, which in my opinion is the real digital
divide. African Americans, Hispanics, and women are disproportionately represented in
the roles of scientist, engineer, developer, patent holder, and chief executive at our most
prominent technology and social media companies. If you don’t believe me, take a look
at this picture.

The solution doesn’t involve technology as much as it involves policy. Yes, of course,
we need more computers, better science labs, and more tech-savvy teachers in urban
schools, but I do not doubt that the number of capable, high achieving, unemployed
African Americans with computer science, engineering, or physics degrees is higher than
it should be. There are too many minorities and women with world-changing ideas and
inventions who can’t get the capital or the connections for startup funding, let alone a job.

In order to close the digital divide we need to crack down on banks who aren’t loaning
to small minority businesses. We have to stop taking the nonchalant attitude that the
banking system can do whatever they want to us and our communities. We need to keep
tabs on our local banks and make sure that some of the $30 billion in the Small Business
Lending Fund is going to innovative, small and disadvantaged businesses. We also need
to wage a campaign to stop the SEC from discrediting micro-lending institutions as that
door has recently been open to help launch many women and minority-owned businesses
globally.

In addition, we need to hold companies like Facebook and Apple accountable by not
only requiring that they have chief diversity officers, supplier diversity programs, and
that they disclose the demographic makeup of their entire workforce, but that they also
achieve racial parity within their technology divisions. And when they give us the excuse
that there aren’t enough talented black and Hispanic scientists or engineers we need to
first reject that notion, and then point them towards our HBCU’s or towards programs at
predominantly white institutions like the University of Maryland Baltimore’s Meyerhoff
Graduate Fellows program. Finally, we should follow-up with our disdain for their lack
of diversity by closing our pocketbooks to their products until they make the changes we
demand.

Furthermore, the money we don’t spend with them should be invested in minority tech
companies or at the very least with companies that respect diversity and inclusion in their
laboratories.


You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on http://28daysofdiversity.com, http://socialwayne.com/category/28-days-of-diversity/ and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.

Posted on February 27, 2011 – by Wayne Sutton

Day 27: People of color impacting the social web – Amani Roberts #28DaysofDiversity

28 Days of Diversity 2011
As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. Last year for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.

For 2011 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also address a topic that affects everyone. For 28 Days of Diversity 2011 each post/person will answer the question “How can we use technology to close the digital divide?” So for the next 28 days, come back to visit SocialWayne.com/tag/28daysofdiversity and 28daysofdiversity.com to see who’s on the list. For day 27, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:

Amani Roberts

Amani Roberts

Twitter: @ahr19

Website/Blog: www.woodsidemediagroup.com

Bio

Amani is the Founder of Woodside Media Group, a Digital PR Firm specializing in Emerging Media and Technology. The company is most active in training people and Fortune 500 organizations on the numerous tools available on the web and within social media. Award winning authors, musicians, restaurants and hotels are a few of the clients that Woodside Media Group continues to support. Amani has also used his expertise to cover many social media topics for Black Web 2.0. Looking ahead, Woodside Media Group will continue to cover emerging media and technology for people and organizations of all demographics with the goal of educating everyone on how to stay ahead of the technology curve.

Amani is also an Area Sales Leader for Marriott International where he is responsible for managing hotel revenue of over $186 million dollars and a team of ten (10) sales executives. Amani has recently been selected to be an exclusive member of a small cadre of people creating an engaging online inter-company social network for the sales discipline within the entire Marriott corporation (300,000+ associates).

How can we use technology to close the digital divide?

The two main thoughts that come to mind is access and inspiration. It is our responsibility to seek out opportunities to share our technological wealth with the less fortunate people and communities. This can be done through donating old smartphones, computers, tablet PC’s and other gadgets. Even better is the donation of time and energy. Spending time with two main age groups – the youth (21 years old and younger) and the Baby Boomers are most important in my opinion. Providing time to show the youth of today that working and learning about technology is cool and definitely a legitimate career choice is crucial. Aspiring to be an athlete, actor, or musician is acceptable. However, it is also acceptable to strive to be a video game designer, a Chief Technology Evangelist for a Fortune 100 company or a startup maven. Opening the mind of our youth to different career possibilities and then watching them pursue these options can be exhilarating.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, we need to continue to share and develop the technology skills of the baby boomers in minority communities. Their life experience and wisdom combined with newfound technology skills can only help to close the digital divide. Many people truly discover their passion in life during their second or third career choice. I look forward to the day when I discover a minority 60 year old who is a first-time CEO of a startup company.

Therefore, with increased access and exposure to technology, we can inspire people to join the movement to close the digital divide. It is time for us to become entrenched in our less fortunate communities and bring people with us on our technological journey through life.


You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on http://28daysofdiversity.com, http://socialwayne.com/category/28-days-of-diversity/ and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.

Posted on February 26, 2011 – by Wayne Sutton

Day 26: People of color impacting the social web – Pam Perry #28DaysofDiversity

28 Days of Diversity 2011
As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. Last year for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.

For 2011 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also address a topic that affects everyone. For 28 Days of Diversity 2011 each post/person will answer the question “How can we use technology to close the digital divide?” So for the next 28 days, come back to visit SocialWayne.com/tag/28daysofdiversity and 28daysofdiversity.com to see who’s on the list. For day 26, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:

Pam Perry

Pam Perry

Twitter: @pamperry

Website/Blog: pamperrypr.com

Bio

Pam Perry is a PR Coach and Social Media Strategist delivering online branding and marketing solutions for best-selling authors, nonprofits and entrepreneurs. She was voted the Top 100 “Savviest in Social Media” by the StartUp Nation, one of the Top 25 Urban Professionals to Follow on Twitter by BrandMakerNews.com and one of the Top 50 Black Business Women Online by ww.mybbwo.com. She is an internet radio host of several popular shows including the Chocolate Pages where she has interviewed authors such as Kirk Franklin, Rev. Run, Demond Wilson and Yolanda Adams. Pam Perry is also a local Detroit Emmy-award winning TV producer, a columnist with Gospel Today magazine and blogs for MyBlogalious.com, Examiner.com on banding, marketing and public relations 2.0 tactics.

How can we use technology to close the digital divide?

Answer: We must continue to pound the digital pavement with relevant information to the “JOE BLOW person on the street” that the internet in not the future – it is now. And it is a lucrative economy. We must make our appeal and approach to our African American communities fresh, fun and SWAG. Create music videos if we must! We must quit being so “techy” and start showing how technology is really part of our lifestyle and not just for those who work in the computer/internet industry. Real people where they are – and bring them up. And once we do that and really break it down to folks, they’ll come in and add their FLAVOR.


You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on http://28daysofdiversity.com, http://socialwayne.com/category/28-days-of-diversity/ and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.

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