Women Who Code (WWC), the largest organization supporting career women in technology, has moved its global headquarters from San Francisco to Atlanta on the heels of a major partnership announcement with The Home Depot. The company’s sponsorship has allowed WWC to set up their office in Midtown Atlanta, and will also contribute towards the launch of several new initiatives in the next year.
WWC was formed in San Francisco as a meetup group for women engineers. Upon celebrating its fifth anniversary just a few weeks ago, the non-profit counts 167,000 members in 60 city chapters, across 20 countries.
While the majority of WWC’s membership is technology workers (about half identify as engineers and another 26 percent as “other tech roles”), their membership also comprises those that work in design, data science, and management or executive-level positions.
The corporate office is responsible for helping coordinate all WWC activity across the world, says Alaina Percival, the non-profit’s co-founder and CEO. That includes supporting local offices in hosting educational and networking events, and giving away millions of dollars in scholarships and event tickets.
They’re continuing to expand their programming: WWC is currently working on the launch of several “deep learning communities,” focused on specific aspects of technology like mobile, data science, Python, security and more. These online tracks will consist of webinars, recorded video talks and other resources to support members that want to dive deeper on a particular topic or who may not have a local WWC chapter in their city.
To do all of this, they’ll be adding a few members to their team of ten, as well as bringing on seven technology fellows.
Much of this is possible thanks to the partnership and financial support of The Home Depot, who will also be sponsoring the development of three of those deep learning tracks.
For their part, The Home Depot says the partnership is part of their commitment to build a more inclusive tech industry. Though the company is most known for its brick and mortar locations, their robust e-commerce strategy has earned them accolades including a designation of top Internet Retailer of the Year in 2015.
“Creating solutions that meet the diverse needs of our customers requires teams that represent a broad blend of experiences,” Angie Brown, vice president of Store Technology, said in a statement. “We’re proud to partner with organizations like Women Who Code who are paving the way to build a more inclusive future for women in technology at all levels.”
Last year, they announced a hiring spree of 1,000 technical positions to augment their existing workforce of 2,800.
Percival says The Home Depot has “been a champion of Women Who Code through hiring members of our community,” and highlights their particular support of the WWC Atlanta chapter, which is one of the largest local chapters in the world.
“For a long time Atlanta has a tremendous amount of industry here, but might not have the industry to be able to support this very fast-growing global technology community that is Women Who Code,” says Percival.
“It was a very difficult decision to make for the board because Silicon Valley so traditionally is the tech hub of the world… but having Home Depot come in and say we are supporting Women Who Code, not just because of the great work that we do, but in an effort to enrich the Atlanta tech community, it demonstrated to our board that Atlanta was a great place to be.”
Percival also underscores the benefits for the Atlanta tech community overall.
“The thought leadership for this global organization is coming out of Atlanta now,” she says. “From our perspective, we’ve only scratched the surface of what we’re going to accomplish.”
Photos provided by Women Who Code