“People are starving for meaningful connections and love,” says the founder of New Tech Northwest, which produces monthly events for people in tech in Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue and Portland.
NEW TECH NORTHWEST FOUNDER
What do you do? I build communities, connect people and create fun experiences where you can start meaningful relationships. As the founder of New Tech Northwest, my focus is on helping people to grow their tech careers and companies. We produce monthly events in Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue and Portland for more than 25,000 members and more than 600 attendees. I also created a tech coalition to help our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness.
How did you get started? Around 2005, I was living in Boulder, Colo., when its startup community began to grow. When I attended their New Tech events, I always left feeling inspired and excited. It reminded me of when I was the program director of a community radio station years before and we built the alternative music community in Las Vegas. Nothing beats being around passionate people collaborating and cheering each other on to success.
What’s a typical day like? During event weeks, I’m reviewing and finalizing our master slide decks for the shows, including decks submitted by the four or five presenters for each night. A lot of event preparation takes place including managing details for sponsors, venues, caterers, volunteers, staff, attendees and hosting events. I receive 70–100 emails a day to respond to, along with having business development calls, emails and meetings.
What’s the best part of the job? Hearing stories of how people in our community find jobs, mentors, customers, help for projects, friends and more through participating in our events. My passion is connecting people to resources that help them create their dreams. When we get to support each other in celebrating the great things happening in the Northwest, and giving back to our amazing culture, I feel fulfilled, grateful and exhilarated.
What surprises people about what you do? That I’ve created a thriving business around helping others that is driven by tens of thousands of community members. People are starving for meaningful connections and love. I create opportunities for smart, fun, creative people who love innovation to come together in ways that facilitate us all benefiting from each other. It’s very exciting to wake up each morning to see what amazing people and opportunities will show up next.
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