Panel Discussion: Why Diverse Teams Improve Performance

What we'll do

This month we're having a panel discussion on the importance and value of diverse teams. Topics we'll cover include:

- Strategies for women and minorities to get into tech fields
- What businesses can do to improve their hiring practices
- How to create a culture that supports diversity
- Benefits for employers and employees with diverse teams and equal pay
- Culture and values needed for companies to achieve higher performing and more diverse teams


Crystal Hansen - Crystal Hansen is founder and CEO of SameWorks, a startup based in Austin, TX that is focused on helping companies achieve certified pay equity.

Prior to starting SameWorks, Crystal was Director of Product Management at WP Engine. At WP Engine, she led product initiatives to serve the needs of over 60,000 customers globally. Prior to WP Engine, she worked in Product at Bazaarvoice. Over the past 15 years, she has held technical and business roles in industries including Real Estate technology, Finance, Computer Gaming, and Education.

Born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota, she’s lived in Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, Gothenburg Sweden, and settled in Austin Texas.

Cecy Correa - Cecy is a developer and designer living in Austin, TX. She loves working with APIs and helping create developer happiness. She's also an active member of the local tech community. As the co-leader of Girl Develop It Austin, she both organizes classes and teaches courses such as Intro to HTML and CSS, Intro to Responsive Web Design, Intro to the Command Line, and Intro to Ruby / Ruby on Rails. She also helps organize the Austin on Rails meetup, one of the oldest tech meetups in my city.

In her spare time, she enjoys fostering rescue dogs, eating burgers, trying out new board games, and playing with my rescued Corgi.

Taylor McCaslin - Taylor is an Austin based multi-disciplinary technologist with 8 years of expertise in digital product design and development. He graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 2013, where he studied business, theatre, computer science, and digital art & media. For the past 5 years, he’s worked at enterprise-scale, hyper-growth technology companies including Duo Security, WP Engine,, LIN Digital, and Bazaarvoice.

When not pushing pixels, coding, or speaking about marketing and tech, Taylor can be found geeking out with the latest gadget or participating in the Austin art scene. He also enjoys volunteering with local human rights and LGBT organizations around central Texas.


Reza Shirazi - Reza is a passionate product and agile leader. He is currently principal consultant at Rezonate Group providing advice to early-stage startups. He was formerly a product director at CLEAResult, the leading energy efficiency consulting company. He launched Austin VOP (Voice Of Product) in July where he interviews product leaders and shares these conversations with the Austin product community.