The black women behind some of technology’s most influential companies

Sherrell Dorsey, The Root | 4/25/2016, 12:47 p.m.
These eight trailblazers are leading the charge for diversity and proving that women and people of color deserve a seat ...
Top row: Cassidy Blackwell; Chanelle Hardy; Bari A. Williams; Jasmine Lawrence. Bottom row: Stacy Brown-Philpot; Erica Baker; Zuhairah Washington; Omosola Odetunde. COURTESY OF THOSE PICTURED

The statistics are clear: There is a stark shortage of women in leadership roles at top technology companies in Silicon Valley and beyond. When it comes to addressing the lack of black women in managerial or senior roles within the industry, the numbers are grim.

Despite their gross underrepresentation, several black women are paving pathways for innovation and increased diversity at their respective companies. Their roles run the gamut, from serving as lead software engineers to heading up strategy to directing public policy or creative marketing campaigns. We’ve compiled a list of eight black women leading America’s most prominent technology brands.