Reshma Saujani has spent the past decade working to close the gender gap in the tech sector. In addition, she has been busy advocating for policies to support working mothers impacted by the pandemic.
Although not elected, Saujani in 2010 became the first Indian American woman to run for US Congress. During her campaign, she visited local schools and saw the gender gap in computing classes, which led her to launch Girls Who Code in 2011 to teach girls to code and program with the goal of increasing the number of computing jobs held by women.
Under her leadership as founder and CEO, Girls Who Code has reached more than 500,000 girls, women and nonbinary individuals through its seven-week summer immersion program, two-week specialized campus program, after-school clubs, and a 13-book New York Times best-selling series.
“We’re reaching girls around the world and are on track to close the gender gap in new entry-level tech jobs by 2030,” the organization states.
Saujani also recently launched Marshall Plan for Moms, a national movement advocating for public and private-sector policies that value women’s labor in the post-Covid economic recovery. Saujani has successfully worked with congressional leaders to introduce legislation at the federal level and continues to act as an agitator to change culture through creative awareness campaigns.
In this vein, Saujani wrote a new book, Pay Up: The Future of Women and Work (and Why It’s Different Than You Think), which dismantles the myth of “having it all” and argues for innovative corporate leadership, government intervention and a sweeping cultural shift. She is also the author of the international bestseller Brave, Not Perfect, and her TED talk, “Teach girls bravery, not perfection,” has more than 5 million views globally.
She likens women’s involvement in the Great Resignation to the #MeToo movement in 2019 and the Women’s March in 2017.
“This is our moment again,” she says. “[W]hat we’re marching toward is to make sure that workplaces work for women, work for people of color, and are finally designed for us.”
2022 DE&I Influencers List