Past Meetup

AIM HIGHER: She Started It, and So Can You!

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Price: $10.00 /per person

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6:00-6:45pm: Registration and pre-party (Food & Drinks)
6:45-7:15pm: Presentations
7:15-8:15pm: Panel discussion and Q&A session
8:15-8:30pm: Networking session

She Started It, and So Can You!

Gender diversity is a monumentally important discussion taking place in the tech industry. However, many of these discussions conclude with emphatic proclamations of "We need more women in tech!" This leaves us with an equally monumental problem to solve: how? How can the tech community encourage more women to pursue their goals of becoming entrepreneurs, developers, or business leaders?

Join author and filmmaker Nora Poggi for a panel discussion focused on the practical, on-the-ground, experiences of women currently in the tech industry. The discussion will kick off with an exclusive preview of the upcoming documentary She Started It (, which tells the real life stories of women who took a chance and followed their entrepreneurial dreams. After the screening, our panel of developers, executives, and founders will offer their advice, their unique experiences, and their most important tools for women entering the tech industry.


Nora Poggi, Journalist, SF Examiner, Filmmaker, She Started It


Nora Poggi is the director & co-producer of the upcoming documentary film on women tech entrepreneurs called She Started It. After graduating from French top schools Sciences Po Paris and La Sorbonne, she moved to San Francisco to work for French social network She then went back to her first love, films, training with the award-winning production company Lucky Dragon Productions, while freelance reporting on major Silicon Valley events for She is now splitting her time between the documentary and her journalistic activities.

Fran Maier, Co-Founder,, Advisor at Portfolia


Fran Maier is serial entrepreneur and brand builder with nearly 20 years experience in B2C and B2B internet businesses. She is best known for her 10+ years leading TRUSTe, the leading privacy trustmark and solutions provider, and as co-founder and first general manager of Fran serves on several for-profit and non-profit boards including GE Capital Bank, SOLOMO Technology, Girls in Tech, and Children’s Council of San Francisco. In addition she is a Member of Women Corporate Directors and is on the Steering Committee for Stanford Women on Boards. In 2012, Fran completed the Stanford Rock Center For Corporate Governance Director's College. She was recently named “The 100 Most Influential Women in Tech” by Hot Topics. Fran speaks widely on the subject of women on boards and in entrepreneurship as well as the importance of marketing to the large and influential female market. She serves as an advisor to many start-ups including those led by women Portfolia, Women’s Start-up Lab, Volunteer Spot, Kanga-Do, and Magpie.

Jess Erickson, Director of Diversity, 500 Startups


Jess loves technology, equality and people, which is why she’s 500’s Director of Diversity. She is also the founder of the global women in tech organization Geekettes. A professional surfer of the web, she’s finally ready to settle back at home after seven years abroad and become an amateur surfer of the West Coast waves.

Kisha Richardson, Senior Software Engineer, Westfield Labs


Kisha is an inner-city kid turned investment banker, turned entrepreneur & engineer. She quit her cushy corporate job and moved across the country from New York City to the San Francisco Bay Area to fully devote time to sharpening her coding skills and “becoming her own technical co-founder”. Kisha built Seed It Project, a mini crowd funding application for bootstrapping entrepreneurs as a way to learn to code. She wrote the application in Ruby & JavaScript using the Rails framework. As a result of its success, she was invited to attend and is a proud Fall 2012 cohort of Hacker School [batch 4]. Post Hacker School, Kisha has transformed into a successful Engineer, Educator and Entrepreneur.

She is currently a Senior Software Engineer at Westfield Labs, a Lead Instructor of the Back End Web Development program at General Assembly and the founder and CEO of cleanME.

Brenda Jin, Senior Platform Engineer, Slack


Brenda is the Director of Partnerships for the San Francisco Chapter of Girl Develop It, where she also teaches and guides curriculum development. She loves to empower humans to connect with each other and their environment using technology. Previous projects have included Hello Worm, a smart urban worm composter, and Pulse, a Heart Rate Monitor to enable individuals to exercise with their optimal heart rate. During the day, she is a Senior Engineer on the Platform team at Slack.

She Started It (

Entrepreneurs are the new rock stars. The names that come to mind are usually Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg or Steve Jobs. Rarely does one think a young woman. And why would they? Only 3 percent of all tech start-ups are founded by women. She Started It is a debut documentary film by Nora Poggi & Insiyah Saeed aiming to dispel those myths and spotlight those women that are starting companies. She Started It profiles five of those driven women – they are; Stacey Ferreira, Thuy Truong, Brienne Ghafourifar, Agathe Molinar & Sheena Allen. The film follows a few of these young entrepreneurs over the course of 2+ years and illuminates the ups and downs they face as they attempt to build their new businesses, in an exciting, narrative film, for the first time on screen. By showcasing these young role models, we hope to ignite that spark, “If she could do it, I could do it!”