Hypepotamus has launched into a new era with the welcome of its recently appointed Editor-in-Chief Kiki Roeder. Roeder follows in the footsteps of Tricia Whitlock, the charismatic startup champion who brought Hype to life as Editor and recently moved into a leadership role at TechSquare Labs. Roeder is prepared to follow in Whitlock’s footsteps, and she has the experience to do it.
The dynamo’s impressive communications career has led to placed work in 50 states and 23 countries, including Wired, FastCompany, The New York Times, Entrepreneur, Gizmodo, USA Today, Dwell and Scientific American. She also understands the language of Hype’s subjects. Roeder has launched three successful businesses since the age of 18, including two tech-focused startups using her experience as a developer and designer. We can’t wait to see what Kiki will do in partnership with our amazing Hypepotamus staff. So without further ado, meet Kiki.
What was your previous role?
Prior to Hypepotamus, I served four years as a Director of Communications and Digital Strategy at a major university. The day after I left my directorship, Atlanta became my home and the place where I established a digital and creative strategy studio earlier this year. Here, I immersed myself in developing coding skills, networked with as many entrepreneurs as I could, and quickly grew my company to service clients across five states. Atlanta has trumped my high expectations (and challenged my backup plan, relocation to Palo Alto to work on a Ph.D.). The city’s robust, welcoming startup community continually impresses. Now, I am excited to share its successes with the world as Hype’s new Editor-in-Chief.
What startup/tech/creative projects have you worked on?
From building companies to coding apps and developing major rebranding campaigns, I have worked on some pretty cool projects. The pinnacle was evolving a tech idea into a startup and then an acquisition. Other highlights include working at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy, doing research at the U.S. National Archives, and developing user experience prototypes for a mobile learning app used by TVA employees servicing seven states. I also led communications for the Living Light House, a high-tech, award-winning solar house that became a traveling exhibit and learning lab. It was featured by the Smithsonian on the National Mall and traveled to four cities, where it was seen by nearly one million people. Additionally, I have served as an advisor and mentor to numerous student and women organizations which facilitate the acquisition of STEAM and digital skills.
What are your best technical or creative skills?
Can I say curiosity and grit? While these aren’t skills per se, they have helped me in creative and technical roles, including serving as a designer, developer, product manager, and entrepreneur. I live to learn, try things out, and am a determined “honey badger” when executing projects.
What’s next on your list to learn?
Why the interest in startups and the technology field?
Startups and technology industries share a common thread – they solve problems. It’s fascinating being a part of teams or serving as an advocate for groups that are working to create solutions. That spirit of innovation is intoxicating. I find it extremely rewarding to be on the bullhorn to others, saying, “Hey, check out what’s happening over here!” And Atlanta is doing a lot of great things! Its advancement in building revenue-generating businesses and traction as a national destination for entrepreneurs, including top growth for women-owned businesses in the U.S., are particularly noteworthy. The world should notice, Atlanta has a lot to say.
What most excites you about your new position as Hype’s Editor?
Being Hype’s Editor-in-Chief means that I am on the threshold of exciting developments in technology and innovation. It’s a pulpit to communicate the fervor and mission of southern startups with others. That’s quite an honor. While it’s intimidating to follow in Trish’s footsteps, I’m thrilled to work with Hype’s exceptional team and take Hypepotamus to a new level.
How can folks get in touch with you to welcome you to the startup community and tell you about their startup/event/job opening?
If you see a woman at events shaking a lot of hands, that’s likely me. Come over and say hello. I’d love to meet you. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call Hype’s Google Voice line, 646-902-4492. Folks can also connect with me on LinkedIn or via Twitter at @kiki_roeder and @hypepotamus.
[photo credit: Jaime Lynn Elliot]