Ada Lovelace Day - Encouraging and Celebrating Women in Tech

What we'll do


Join us for the next By ThoughtWorks tech-talk series. Mingle, learn, and hang out with those wanting to keep up with the latest in technology. It’s our shout, so please join us for a fun and casual session over drinks and nibbles with networking to follow.


This year ThoughtWorks is hosting a By ThoughtWorks special event, in celebration of Ada Lovelace Day.

Ada Lovelace Day is a celebration of the achievements of women in STEM and aims to create new role models who will encourage more women to follow STEM careers.

Our four speakers will share insights into how we can get young women interested in tech careers, examine the impacts of motherhood in STEM careers and the importance of diversity in these industries.


17:30-17:45 - Registration

17:45-17:50 - Welcome and Introduction

17:50-18:20 - Sarah Taraporewalla, Technical Principal Consultant, ThoughtWorks

Tech Lead to Motherhood : one women’s journey from changing systems to changing nappies, and back again.

In this talk, Sarah will share her experience of being one of the few female tech leads, planning her career, going on maternity leave and returning to work- thrice. You will hear challenges she faces, support mechanisms she has put in pace and surprises she discovered on her journey.

Sarah is a Technical Principal Consultant at ThoughtWorks. She is a developer, coach, architect, technical lead, mother. Working part time progressing through her career whilst raising and supporting three preschoolers has given her a unique perspective in what it means to have it all - family, career, life.

18:20-18:50 - Andrew Harcourt, Principal Consultant, ThoughtWorks

Hiring the best team, not the best heroes.

In this talk, Andrew will be taking a slightly different perspective on why diversity is important and how its lack is harming your organisation, some ways to fix things after they've gone off the rails, and some of the common pitfalls along the way.

Andrew is a Principal Consultant at ThoughtWorks and a co-founder at Stack Mechanics. He is a solutions architect and software engineer with interests in large-scale, high-load, geographically-distributed systems. He specialises in project rescue, governance and development methodologies.

Andrew's main areas of interest are domain-driven design, event sourcing, scalable service architectures and cloud computing. Andrew's mother wrote COBOL on punch cards and he has been coding in one form or another since he was five years old.

18:50-19:20 Larene Le Gassick, Engineer, and Sammy Herbert, Inclusion Strategist, WORK180

What WORK180 is doing to change the landscape for women in tech

Larene is an Engineer at WORK180 and conference speaker, she is building products to help raise the bar of workplace culture, diversity, and accessibility at every company in the world, and sharing her technical knowledge with the community as much as she can.

Larene studied robotics engineering and has since worked as a computer vision engineer, a programming teacher for kids, a lead tutor at UQ, and a senior consultant at ThoughtWorks. She has run the Women Who Code Brisbane Meetup since 2015, supporting and building local talent in tech community.

Sammy is an Inclusion Strategist for WORK180, consulting and educating numerous tech companies to empower them to become an inclusive workplace for women. She is an organiser for NodeGirls Brisbane and is passionate about the joining of liberal arts, humanities and technology.

Register now as places are limited!