Saturday, December 31, 2011

Celebrating (and Creating) a Proud Black History

Crossposted from Visions Online
by Henry Ford

Raven Stevenson
By the time the next issue is published, we will have honored Dr. Martin Luther King and celebrated Black History Month. On December 27th I had the pleasure of getting a head start by listening to a broadcast on the BDPA iRadio Show. The program featured three dynamic individuals, including Raven Stevenson, a student studying Biomedical Engineering at Duke University. Raven is also a member of the U.S. Naval Reserve and a former member of a BDPA High School Computer Competition Team trained by BDPA Greater Columbia chapter.

After listening to the broadcast, and communicating with Raven, it was clear that she represents the Black History that we dream of, pray for, and work for. Intelligent, involved, personable, grateful, and the list goes on and on. Because of the powerful and diverse content of the program, there will be more written and shared in the future on our inspirational blog.

We can best support and replicate the efforts of people like Raven by becoming committed to positive change. As Raven shared with the listening audience "...dreaming is achieving the impossible..."

Raven and others featured throughout this issue are representative of Dreamers and Doers, and we feel blessed to know and feature them.

Henry Ford
Continue to dream, and pray, and build and support, and grow into your possibilities. Whatever you do or fail to do in the coming days, weeks, months, and years will become a part of your life story, and the history that will be celebrated in the future.

Henry Ford is an author, speaker, consultant and publisher of VISIONS Online. Henry is BDPA Cleveland chapter member. He wrote the book, The Power of Association: Success Through Volunteerism.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Message from Atlanta Chapter President-Elect

In 2012, BDPA Atlanta's Education and Professional Development area will proudly introduce its first professional development program: SUCCESS ALLIANCE!

Success Alliance is a professional development support group which helps you to define and set your career, business or academic goals. This program was designed to help YOU succeed by giving you all the tools needed to achieve your goals.

You will learn how to:
  1. Manage your goals like a Project Manager
  2. Analyze your goals like a Business Analyst
  3. Problem solve using Agile
  4. Measure your progress using Six Sigma
Keys to Success:
  1. Join a support group of 8 like-minded individuals
  2. Commit to meeting at least 80 hours per month with your support group
  3. Participate in support group for 8 consecutive months
For more information or questions, send an email to:

Felicia Jones, President-Elect
BDPA Atlanta

Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year (SAMMY) Scholarship Awards

ATTENTION HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS -- It’s time for the Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year (SAMMY) Scholarship Awards. Do you have what it takes to wear the famous milk mustache? Do you make the grade in the classroom, on the field and in your community?

25 student-athletes will win a $7,000 scholarship and a spot in a special milk mustache ad to run in USA TODAY. Want more? You’ll also get an all-expense paid trip to an exciting awards ceremony at Disney Wide World of Sports’ Milk House in Orlando, FL and an induction into the Milk House Hall of Fame.
Deadline is March 9, 2012.

[Read More]

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Entrepreneur Profile: Fatou Jabbie (USL Technology Consulting)

Habari Gani? Ujamaa! Today we celebrate the Kwanzaa principle focused on cooperative economics. It seems like a great day to inaugurate a new feature on our blog. We plan to highlight some of the BDPA entrepreneurs from around the nation. Our hope is that these profiles will help to drive attention and business to the entrepreneurs and business owners within BDPA.

Today our entrepreneur profile is focused on Fatou Jabbie, founder and CEO, USL Technology Consulting.

Fatou Jabbie has over 11 years of experience in Network and Systems Engineering while holding positions ranging from Senior Network Architect to Senior Data Systems Engineer, Technology Solutions Manager in Wireless Telecommunication, Financial services and Media industries. Fatou is a member of our BDPA New York chapter.

Her hands-on experience spans from enterprise network design, integration, configuration, administration and troubleshooting LAN/WAN infrastructure. She’s managed complex projects, and skilled at identifying potential problems and offering alternative solutions; articulate communicator; with the ability to effectively interact with vendors, senior leadership, and cross-functional teams.
Fatou shared the following, "I am going to touch on my experience and the subject of being an underrepresented minority in technology. I am sure a lot of folks in this category can relate to the challenges we face with societal stereotypes and unconscious bias that reinforce the perception that girls and minorities are not as good as boys in math, science, technology and engineering disciplines. I never wanted to buy into it, but it does seem to be a factor that undermines our efforts and perhaps causes some of us to drop out of professional activities.

The triple bias of gender, race and ethnicity has played its fare share of significant disadvantage working in the industry with so few representing as role models and leaders.

A scarcity of role models and mentors reinforces stereotypes of technology as a field that doesn't encourage women or minorities. Students and employees of color see few role models in the higher echelons of the field, getting a message that they do not belong as a minority. It is a sad fact that mentors tend to seek proteges who resemble them in background, race, and gender. This must change because we know that mentoring is critical for encouragement, empowerment and retention of women and underrepresented minorities in school and the work place.

With my professional experience, I can absolutely vouch for the fact that mentoring is one of the most important predictors of advancement for women and other minorities. Also it is imperative that underrepresented minorities in technical positions to have the true perception that they possess the attributes necessary for success.

Despite all the stereotypes surrounding underrepresented minorities in math, science, technology and engineering disciplines it is important that we overcome those stereotypes. After all, we know that we have the same attributes successful people in these fields which are analytical, innovators, questioning, risk-taking, collaborative, entrepreneurial, and assertive. However, it is absolutely necessary for underrepresented minorities to have the confidence and self-perception that that they possess the attributes necessary for success which is critical to their success."
Through USL Technology Consulting, founded in May 2010, Fatou diligently investigates new technologies, systems and applications that enable business agility, application availability, and system reliability to run faster, better and smarter.

Fatou is truly a rare breed in the industry because of her interpersonal skills and exemplary ability to understand a company's business while still being able to delve into nitty-gritty technology issues. Being able to successfully outline and communicate solutions to complex technology requests or issues to clients is one of the key differentiators clients appreciate in working with her.

Fatou received a degree in Computer Science from Kentucky State University, Frankfort, KY.

You can follow Fatou on Twitter - @Techie4SmallBiz

Our hope is that you will reach out to Fatou to encourage her and to point her in the direction of new business. Also, you should feel free to let me know if you know of other BDPA entrepreneurs or small business owners that we should profile here on our blog!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Grant Proposal: Capital One Foundation (BDPA New York)

BDPA New York chapter worked with BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to complete a grant proposal to the Capital One Foundation. The process has two parts to it with Capital One Foundation. First, we have to go online and request permission from them to submit the full grant proposal. If permission is granted then we turn in our complete documentation.

We completed the online part of the process earlier today. BETF would like to thank BDPA New York chapter president Renetta English and the chapter's grant coordinator Shawn Reid for working with us on this funding process. Renetta and Shawn followed the process outlined in the BETF standard operating procedure for grant funding on these types of programs.

We are now in a 'wait and see' mode. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

BDPA iRadio Show - December 27, 2011

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is very proud to be the creator of the BDPA iRadio Show. Our Internet Radio Show has been up and running for over five months with over 60 guests. You can listen to the archive version of the show using the widget shown in the right-hand sidebar of this blog.  

In any case, we encourage you to listen to the show which aired on Tuesday, December 27, 2011.

Listen to internet radio with BDPA on Blog Talk Radio

The guests on the show:
  1. Angela Benton - CEO, Black Web Media - Angela Benton’s experience spans a variety of industries and roles. Throughout her career she has worked in a variety of roles in design, marketing, development, and digital strategy. Her expertise lies in New Media. Presently Angela is the CEO of Black Web Media, which publishes the leading online publication for African Americans interested in Technology and New Media. Black Web Media’s mission is to be a catalyst for innovation and inclusive ideas on the web for African Americans. She also Founded and Chairs’ the New Media Entrepreneurship Conference & Accelerator, who’s goal is to steer the Internet economy to be more diverse and inclusive. You can follow Angela on Twitter - @ABenton
  2. Raven Stevenson - HSCC Alumni, BDPA Greater Columbia - Raven was a HSCC participant at the 2009 national HSCC championship. During the conference she was interviewed by the US Navy. They offered her a full-ride scholarship (value: $180,000) to attend Duke University. She is serving in the US Naval reserves as a midshipman while she completes her education. She is scheduled to graduate in 2013 with a degree in Biology/Neuroscience. You can follow Raven on Twitter - @MoralyDeepRaven
  3. Ramon Ray - Editor, - is a media company educating growing businesses in how to use technology as a tool to grow their businesses through events and online content. Ramon is author of “Technology Solutions for Growing Businesses”. He produces the Annual Small Business Summit, Taste of Technology Series, 12 Hours Of Tech and other events. Ramon has written over 8,000 articles and posts – all focused on technology for growing businesses. Ramon is on Twitter - @RamonRay

There will be great discussions between our guests and Franne McNeal on the show. What questions would you like to ask these guests?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Message from New York Chapter President

Renetta English
Dear BDPA Members and Supporters,

I cannot believe how fast 2011 and my first year as President is zooming by.  I have enjoyed working with the Executive Board, Members and meeting so many of you at our numerous program meetings, networking events and community programs.

During 2011, the BDPA New York chapter has accomplished much with your support and our achievements were acknowledged by National BDPA who selected us 'Chapter of the Year'.   

Thank you to the Executive Board & Members, UBS & Chase, BETF, Volunteers, Donators, Speakers, Abundant Life Christian Center, B. Smith's, Microsoft, BDPA Today, Diversity/Careers in Engineering and Information Technology, Equal Opportunity Publications, Black Sci-Fi, and Bric Arts Media for helping make BDPA New York Chapter a success in 2011. 

In 2012, it's important that we maintain the same momentum.  We need your time, gifts and talents to make 2012 another successful year.  Please email the following committees to volunteer.
  1. Black Family Technology Awareness Week, - Requests: Volunteers to Assist on the Day and Moderators 
  2. Student Information Technology Education and Scholarship (SITES), - Requests: HSCC - Instructors 
  3. IT Showcase, - Requests: Mentors 
  4. Communications Team, - Requests: Writers, Videographer, Photographer, website assistant 
  5. Grants and Donations, - Requests: Grant writing assistants 
  6. Finance, - Requests: Correspondence, Reports, Fundraising 
  7. Professional Development, - Requests: Workshop presenters 
  8. Executive Board, - Requests: Coordinators for Membership, Fundraising, Nominating Committee, Recording Secretary, Corporate Advisory, By-Laws, Chapter Programs
If you have concerns regarding "How can I make a difference" or "What's in it for me", please contact me at  or (212) 802-5341 so we can discuss how you can play an active role in the success of our chapter.

In 2012 the Executive Board and I hope you participate in our Information Technology (IT) events: 
  • January: Community Martin Luther King Celebration, Retuning, Retooling and Revitalizing your IT Career in 2012 @ Microsoft, Kick off SITES Program - HSCC & IT Showcase @ Medgar Evers Preparatory School 
  • February: Digital Learning Day, Social Media Week, Meet and Greet @B. Smith's, Black Family Technology Awareness Week - Presentations / Panel Discussions 
  • March: Small Business Summit 2012 @ Metropolitan Pavilion, Mobile Health -  Health IT @ Microsoft, Running Your Business w/ Open Source technologies 
  • April: Meet and Greet  @ B. Smith's 
  • May: Presentation IT Showcase / HSCC Students or Topic: Big data analytics and business intelligence 
  • June: Mobile-Centric Applications and Interfaces crafting your strategy - User interface to User engagement,  Scholarship and Programs Fundraising Event 
  • August: National Conference - Baltimore, MD, Meet and Greet @ Bar Basque 
  • September:  Cloud Intelligence 
  • October: Cyber Security Awareness- Community and Professional Events, Executive Board Meeting, Meet and Greet @ B. Smith's, Nominations Executive Board Officers,  Making Strides for Breast Cancer Walk 
  • November: Elections - Membership Meeting - Members Only 
  • December: 2012 Holiday Celebration,Computer Science Education Week
Please visit our website,, to view 2012 Calendar of Events details.  If you are interested in being a speaker for any of the meetings contact me at

Lastly, I look forward to seeing you at Microsoft on January 19 for 'Retuning, Retooling and Revitalizing your IT Career in 2012'.

Have a wonderful Holiday and All the best for 2012!

Renetta English, President
BDPA New York Chapter

Saturday, December 24, 2011

10 Ways to Handle Member Complaints

Membership growth and retention is the backbone of a successful non-profit organization. Part of retaining members from year-to-year is dealing in a positive and proactive manner with complaints. Let's look at ten things members REALLY want, need and expect when they are complaining [SOURCE]:
  1. To be treated with dignity and respect.
  2. To be offered flexibility and options.
  3. To talk to someone who is competent ... and confident.
  4. To have their problem solved FIRST TIME.
  5. To have prompt response to their problem/requests - be contacted when promised.
  6. To deal with one person; have ongoing access to that person if the problem is ongoing.
  7. To engage in clear and concise communication; not cloudy issues.
  8. To be provided with sufficient information to ensure the problem doesn't happen again.
  9. To know how long it will take to solve a problem.
  10. To be treated with appreciation for their business.
What is your take on this list? Share your thoughts using the COMMENTS link shown below.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Message from Atlanta Chapter President-Elect

BDPA Atlanta is proud to announce several key items that are coming in 2012. We are VERY excited about them, and hopefully, you will be, too!
  • SUCCESS ALLIANCE - BDPA's Education and Professional Development area will proudly introduce its first professional development program: SUCCESS ALLIANCE!  Success Alliance is a professional development support group which helps you to define and set your career, business or academic goals. This program was designed to help YOU succeed by giving you all the tools needed to achieve your goals.
  • iPad 2 GIVE AWAY - Thanks to our sponsor World Wide Technology, we will be giving away an iPad2. The contest begins in January and will continue through April. The drawing will be held during our monthly meeting on April 18th. Contest rules and eligibility will be announced next week.
  • NEXT LEVEL TECHNOLOGY FOUNDATION - Next Level Technology is an education foundation that was established by BDPA Atlanta to provide a 'tax-deductible' way for donors to contribute to the organization. Next Level Technology directly supports BDPA Atlanta to provide support of technical and professional training for high school students and adult career professionals.


Felicia Jones, President-Elect
BDPA Atlanta Chapter

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Tips for Nonprofit Websites

Crossposted: Nonprofit Local

Mary Kelly, CEO of Productive Leaders, is not only an economist and national leadership speaker, but she's also a nonprofit Board member and volunteer. Recently, she shared some solid reminders for nonprofit websites with us:

  1. Keep your website updated. Nothing sends potential donors away faster than an old website. It makes the organization seem as though you are no longer active.
  2. Put future as well as past events on the website. If it doesn't seem like the organization is doing anything, people won't feel compelled to be part of it.
  3. List what you need, not just that you need money. Telling people that you need $18,000 to buy a van to shuttle senior citizens to medical appointments 7 days a week, operating 12 hours a day is a compelling cause. Telling people you need $18,000 is not.
  4. Give people the opportunity to give more than money. Someone might have that van, though they don't have $18,000. List what you need that you would have to pay for (accounting services, plumbing, website design, dog food, trash bags, whatever). People who might not be able to write a check might have the talent or resources that you need.
Do a quick check-in on your organization's website. Can you put a check mark next to all of these items? If not, these quick changes could bring more donors and volunteers your way!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Leadership Tip: Get the Most Out of Meetings

I have attended hundreds of meetings in my BDPA career. Board meetings. Committee meetings. You name it and I've either attended or chaired it. Add on another few hundred of meetings during my career in Corporate America.

Meetings have a bad reputation as being ineffective and a waste of time. They don't have to be, if you follow some simple guidelines:
  1. Don't call a meeting to ask your team's opinion if the decision has already been made. If their recommendation is different from what is going to happen, they will feel more resentment and anger than if they had never been asked in the first place. If you want to announce a decision, send a memo. Meetings should be dialogues. If they turn into monologues, eyes will quickly glaze over.
  2. Head off interruptions. Be sure the room will be free for the duration of the meeting. If there is a phone in the meeting room, it should be turned off or messages should be forwarded.
  3. Do the brainstorming first. Don't waste meeting time. Brainstorm through e-mail or using social networking technology before the meeting to develop approaches to the issue at hand.
  4. Establish a clear time frame for meetings -- and keep them short! -- Meetings show diminishing returns after the first 30 minutes, and little good can be expected to come after the first hour of the meeting. Establish a clear time frame for the meeting. To encourage quick decisions, meet in a room without chairs.
What are some tips you've used in the past to get the most out of meetings?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Gates Millennium Scholars Nomination

The Gates Millennium Scholars 2012 Nomination Process has launched. The submission deadline is January 11, 2012.

This program, funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was established to provide outstanding low income minority students with an opportunity to complete an undergraduate college education in any discipline area of interest.

Continuing scholars may also request funding for a graduate degree program in one of the following discipline areas: education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health or science.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Message from Philadelphia Chapter President

In a few short weeks, I will have the honor to serve as the next president of BDPA Philadelphia Chapter (4-time National Chapter of the Year). I would not have been inspired to embark on this journey without the leadership, support and guidance from Philadelphia’s past presidents: Howard James, Donald Campbell, Curtis Jenkins, Monique Berry, Hayward West and Ron Cureton.

I would also like to thank Wayne Hicks (BETF executive director), Milt Haynes (BDPA chief information officer), and Earl Pace (BDPA founder) who were also instrumental in my decision.

Finally, I would like to thank Charlie Perkins (BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter president) and Perry Carter (BDPA Washington DC chapter president) for their counsel as Philadelphia works aggressively to build a stronger Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program.

I look forward to carrying on the BDPA mission to 'Advance Careers from the Classroom to the Boardroom'!

Eileen Gadsden, 2012-2013 president
BDPA Philadelphia Chapter

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Message from Cincinnati Chapter President

Seasons Greetings from the BDPA Cincinnati Chapter!

The BDPA Cincinnati Board of Directors (BOD) would like to wish you and your family Happy Holidays and a joyful New Year. We have been working throughout the year to bring services throughout the year to BDPA Cincinnati members, potential members, corporate sponsors, entrepreneurs and supporters.

Here are some of our 2011 chapter accomplishments:
  1. Student IT Education & Scholarship (SITES) Program
  2. Hosted the Midwest Regional High School Computer Competition
  3. Hosted 16th annual chapter Awards Banquet
  4. Record-breaking grant revenue
    • Christ Church Cathedral “Parishioners Grant” submitted and Approved $500
    • Christ Church Cathedral “Community Grant” submitted and Approved for $15,000
    • Procter & Gamble submitted and Approved for $5,000
  5. Membership grew to 64 in 2011
  6. Corporate Sponsorship Growth
    • AAKOBB Financial Services
    • Cincinnati Bell
    • Cincinnati State Technical College
    • Eastern Personnel Services
    • HP
    • Resolvit Resources
    • University of Cincinnati
  7. Strategic Alliances
Wanda Gray & Clarence Larcarte
As we move into to 2012, I’d like to say goodbye as the BDPA Cincinnati President and welcome our new President – Clarence Larcarte. He and the 2012-2013 BOD are working on plans to continue to provide services to Cincinnati and the surrounding areas.

Wanda Gray, president
BDPA Cincinnati Chapter

Friday, December 16, 2011

Millipore Foundation

Millipore Foundation strives to fulfill its social obligation of serving the public interest directly through contributions to selected non-profit organizations and institutions primarily in science education, bio-science research, and local community support. The following guidelines serve as touchstones for their contributions:
  • Their contributions are consistent with Millipore's presence in the community and are closely related to the community’s activities.
  • Their contributions are in amounts commensurate with available funds and desired results.
  • They take the initiative, when appropriate, to support new projects or new non-profit organizations, and sometimes seek to leverage additional support from other sources (by a challenge grant or otherwise).
  • They conduct periodic evaluations of the programs and projects they support; support of any program or project at one point in time does not guarantee continued support.
  • Although they coordinate all contributions centrally, they encourage Millipore site managers around the country to submit funding proposals that address the specific needs of their local communities.
Unfortunately, they cannot meet every request due to the high number of groups in need of assistance. In order to focus our activities and resources on those areas which make a significant impact, they sponsor organizations and institutions most closely connected to Millipore's goals and identity, and to the Millipore Giving Program’s purpose. Therefore you should review the following criteria before submitting a request.

Primary support is given to programs related to education, science, and sustainability initiatives. At the local level, social service and public safety programs will be considered for funding. Programs which serve Greater Boston, MA, Bedford, MA, Billerica, MA, Burlington, MA, Danvers, MA, Jaffrey, NH, Kankakee, IL, Lawrence, MA, Lowell, MA, St. Charles, MO or Temecula, CA will be considered for funding. Only organizations with 501(c)3 tax-exempt status will be considered for funding.

If your program meets all of these criteria, you may submit a copy of your 501(c)3 certificate, your tax I.D.. #, and a letter of inquiry no more than two pages in length briefly describing: your organization, the program for which funding is sought, and the amount of funding requested. Those organizations whose programs are of interest to Millipore will be invited to submit full proposals.

Please mail or email your letter of inquiry to:

Tara Duplaga
Millipore Giving Program
290 Concord Road
Billerica, MA 01821

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is willing to work with any eligible chapter to submit letter of inquiry. It appears that we may have only one co-located chapter -- Boston.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

ConnXus Provides Opportunity for Black Technology Entrepeneurs to Connect with Corporate Decision-Makers

BDPA Cincinnati chapter president Clarence Larcarte and I had the pleasure of meeting earlier this month with ConnXus CEO Rod Robinson. Rod participated in the showcase at the CincyTech Annual Meeting last month.

You may recall that this blog expressed concern about the dearth of diversity at the event.  However, one of the pleasant discoveries for us was ConnXus (shown in above photo) ... a Black-owned online service that seeks to revolutionize supplier diversity by making it easy for minority- and woman-owned businesses to connect with corporations looking for diverse suppliers and offering real contract opportunities.

Here’s how it works:
  • Corporations register as buyer members and indicate in which of the more than 100 product or service categories they have purchasing needs.
  • Small, minority- or woman-owned businesses register as supplier members, indicating the product or service categories they provide, as well as creating a company profile highlighting their size, areas of expertise and representative customers.
  • Suppliers request performance ratings from prior customers, and just like many consumer-focused websites, more and better ratings translate into better search results.
  • Buyers can conduct searches for specific suppliers or post contract opportunities for suppliers to submit bids.
ConnXus co-founder Rod Robinson is a Fortune 1000 procurement expert and supplier diversity who created this company out of his own personal frustration trying to match his clients purchasing needs with diverse businesses who could supply them. Knowing all the ways technology is being leveraged in today’s business environment, he just knew there had to be a better way to connect buyers with diverse suppliers. He partnered with Chris Downie, founder and CEO of America’s #1 diet and fitness site SparkPeople, to develop ConnXus.

Since launching in December 2010, corporate buyer members have posted more than $75 million in contract opportunities for diverse supplier members on the site. All the supplier members who have won new business through have said that they never would have known about the opportunities without it. Some have even been invited to bid on additional, larger contracts. Registered ConnXus members number close to 1,000, including small, woman- and minority-owned businesses representing hundreds of categories, along with corporate buyers responsible for more than $20 billion in annual spending.

ConnXus recently announced a partnership with LexisNexis to offer their members a discounted price on sales and marketing information and are in the process of developing other partnerships that will offer value to their members.

My hope is that all BDPA entrepreneurs, BDPA business owners and BDPA corporate sponsors will take a hard look at ConnXus. Now is the time for us to leverage our own networks to build our businesses on a local, regional and national basis. The next step is yours -- visit ConnXus and let us know what you think!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Message from Atlanta Chapter President

As part of our Community Outreach efforts, BDPA Atlanta chapter partnered with the North Fulton Community Charities on their Holiday Assistance Program. We committed to making two families holiday wishes come true during the 2011 holiday season. With your support, we were able to honor that commitment!

BDPA Atlanta would like to express our sincere appreciation to everyone for your help and support in making this a joyous holiday for these families! The kids will wake up Christmas morning with huge smiles on their faces once they see their gifts. They will also be able to enjoy a warm holiday dinner thanks to each of you!

We would like to recognize the following people for their monetary donations:
  1. Derrick Brown
  2. Katrina Collier
  3. Linda Davis
  4. Pamelle Fleming
  5. Robert Gatlin
  6. Robert Haughton
  7. Carter Hill
  8. Felicia Jones
  9. Mike Williams
A VERY special Thank You to Pamelle Fleming for organizing our 2011 Holiday Outreach effort.

On behalf of BDPA Atlanta, have a wonderful and happy holiday season! We look forward to seeing you in 2012!

Carter Hill, outgoing president
Felicia Jones, incoming president
BDPA Atlanta Chapter

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

BDPA iRadio Show: Kirk Williams (Los Angeles Chapter VP-Strategy & Planning)

BDPA iRadio Show interviewed Kirk Williams (VP-Strategy & Planning, BDPA Los Angeles Chapter) on December 13, 2011.

The host of BDPA iRadio Show is Franne McNeal. The show is sponsored by the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation. This particular video clip was put together by BETF volunteers George Carter and Michele Ortmann.

Kirk is a very experienced Management Consultant with strong business, analytical and operational skills and deep expertise in helping organization execute their business strategies to deliver expected results. Kirk is a strategic, business-minded and team oriented leader with 14+ years of management consulting experience. Kirk has worked in different industries such as Banking, High Technology, Communications and Insurance. His ability to assimilate to different client environments and industries makes him a valued asset to drive change. Kirk has broad methodological knowledge and experience to add significant value to client from a business, operations and change management perspective. He is now using his business experience to support BDPA Los Angeles chapter as their VP-Strategy & Planning.

Kirk is on Twitter - @KirkWilliamsSr. Kirk will be reading this blog post ... do you have any questions that you would like him to answer?
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BDPA Cleveland SITES Overview (Video)

It is encouraging to see more BDPA chapters using YouTube to inform the public about its programs and services. The trend continues in this video with BDPA Cleveland SITES coordinator Sylvia Calhoun.

One way to encourage Sylvia and her chapter is to make a secure online donation to support BDPA college scholarships for Cleveland-area high school students who are going through the SITES training program.

BDPA iRadio Show - December 13, 2011

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is very proud to be the creator of the BDPA iRadio Show. Our Internet Radio Show has been up and running for over five months with over 60 guests. You can listen to the archive version of the show using the widget shown in the right-hand sidebar of this blog. In any case, we encourage you to listen to the the show which aired on Tuesday, December 13, 2011.

Listen to internet radio with BDPA on Blog Talk Radio

The guests on the show:
  1. Greg Greenlee - Co-founder, Blacks In Technology - Greg Greenlee is co-founder of the Blacks In Technology web portal. Blacks In Technology is devoted to help encourage and promote careers in Technology to African Americans everywhere. Greg seeks to change minds one bit at a time and we are pleased that he agreed to be a guest on our show. You can follow Greg on Twitter - @BlkInTechnology
  2. Teresa Williams - Vice President, BDPA South Region - National BDPA will transition into a regional governance model in 2012. Teresa is the first-ever South Region Vice President. Teresa has over 20 years of Information Technology and professional experience including the implementation and management of business software solutions. She has worked in various industries as a Programmer, LAN Administrator, Application Manager and Project Manager. She served as BDPA Atlanta chapter president in 2008-2009. The chapter had remarkable growth in terms of membership and programs under her leadership. The iRadio Show audience will be very interested to hear about Teresa’s vision for the South Region.
  3. Kirk Williams - Vice President, BDPA Los Angeles - Kirk is a very experienced Management Consultant with strong business, analytical and operational skills and deep expertise in helping organization execute their business strategies to deliver expected results. Kirk is a strategic, business-minded and team oriented leader with 14+ years of management consulting experience. Kirk has worked in different industries such as Banking, High Technology, Communications and Insurance. His ability to assimilate to different client environments and industries makes him a valued asset to drive change. Kirk has broad methodological knowledge and experience to add significant value to client from a business, operations and change management perspective. He is now using his business experience to support BDPA Los Angeles chapter as their VP-Strategy & Planning. Kirk is on Twitter - @KirkWilliamsSr

There will be great discussions between our guests and Franne McNeal on the show. What questions would you like to ask these guests?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Grant Declination: PepsiCo Foundation (BDPA Cleveland)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) partnered with BDPA Cleveland chapter to send a 'letter of inquiry' (LOI) to the PepsiCo Foundation. We wanted permission to request funding for the youth education programs hosted by the chapter in Northeast Ohio.

We're disappointed to report that our LOI was turned down. PepsiCo Foundation wrote:
"Thank you for your Letter of Interest seeking a grant from the PepsiCo Foundation. Unfortunately, given the Foundation’s current priorities and commitments, we will not be able to support your program. Best wishes for continued progress in the important work you do."
Although this is a set-back to the fundraising efforts of BDPA Cleveland chapter ... it is not going to stop us from continuing our work to provide science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) training for high school students ... and we may even keep drinking Pepsi products on occasion!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The New Philanthropists - Tech Entrepreneurs Giving While Living

Scarce resources and the growing needs of society are driving innovation when it comes to philanthropy, says Thomas Tierney, chairman of The Bridgespan Group and a long time board member of eBay. Technology has become a major enabler in the field.

Tierney surprised many when he moved away from a very lucrative career as chief executive of the very successful consultancy firm Bain & Company back in 2000, to co-found The Bridgespan Group, a non-profit consulting firm serving the non-profit sector, of which he is now chairman. It is a move he describes as one "from success to significance".

Read the rest of the Silicon Republic article.

This Week in BDPA (Dec 11-17)

BDPA has 45 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Our hope is that you find reasons to provide tax-deductible support to us here, here or here!

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Africa-Funded Philanthropies Discuss Collaborations During Lagos Meeting

Africa’s philanthropy landscape became the focus of the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) and World Bank-hosted convention of Africa-funded philanthropic organizations in Lagos earlier this month.

The meeting, which reviewed the priorities and programs of related foundations, had participants deliberating opportunities for specific collaborations as well as ensuring an effective enabling policy and legal framework for philanthropy at the country level.
These are unique times for Africa,” said Founder of TEF, Tony O. Elumelu.

What this convening platform will do is create a collaboration framework for the emerging class of African-funded foundations, so that together, these institutions can have the same kind of impact that organized American philanthropy has had over the last century.”
Participating philanthropic organizations included the Brenthurst Foundation, the FATE Foundation, Kagiso Trust, the Kenya Community Development Foundation and the Made-in-Africa Foundation.

Others are the Motsepe Family Foundation, Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, Thabo Mbeki Foundation, The Tony Elumelu Foundation and The Wellbeing Foundation.

These foundations represent a combination of those established by high net-worth Africans, political leaders, and endowed community grant-making organizations.

Read the rest of The Guardian article

Friday, December 9, 2011

Election Results: BDPA Cincinnati (2012-2013)

BDPA Cincinnati recently concluded its election for leadership in the next two years. Prince Ellis (Information Technology Department Chair, Brown Mackie College) was re-elected to a second 2-year term as the chapter's vice president of finance.

The election turned on Prince's past BDPA achievements. He helped organize the annual awards banquet, served as an instructor during the chapter's computer camp and worked closely with the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to generate a record-breaking amount of revenue for the Cincinnati chapter. He attended most of the chapter events and successfully managed the chapter's funding.
Prince said, "I will continue to ensure zero-based budgeting and ensure that the chapter has funding for our events and programs."
The BDPA Cincinnati chapter leadership for 2012-2013 is:
Dalric Webb, Wanda Gray, Prince Ellis and Clarence Larcarte
BDPA Cincinnati has been around since 1989. It is a 4-time winner of the 'Chapter of the Year' honors on a national level and remains a powerhouse on both a regional and national level. The eyes of the nation will be watching Clarence as he takes the chapter to higher levels in the coming months and years.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Gift Suggestion: RSS Feed Subscriptions

Our economy is terrible! Therefore, most of us are looking for less expensive ways to share gifts with our favorite bloggers. I thought that I would help you out with one really great idea:

Subscribe to the RSS feed for this blog!

Some of you may be asking, 'What the heck is RSS?'. My hope is that the rest of y'all already know the value in being a RSS feed subscriber. After all, you don't want to go into the new year missing any of our blog posts just because you weren't able to personally get online to visit. The front page of this blog only holds about 7-9 posts ... so some of them only stay on the main page for a few days.

Subscribe to my feed and you never need to miss out in the future.

I tried to make it easy with the widget up at the top of the sidebar over on the right. I hope that this is a helpful decision for your holiday gift-giving efforts. After all, a RSS feed subscription is the gift that keeps on giving!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

United Technologies

United Technologies (UTC) supports a broad range of community activities and focuses efforts in four areas including "Advancing STEM Education (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics)". Since 1994, UTC has sponsored FIRST Robotics competitions at high schools across the country with $2.8 million in sponsorship. Partnering with FIRST combines UTC's dedication to math and science education with its corporate focus on innovation. Last year, UTC supported 29 teams with cash, engineering expertise and professionals who coached and mentored the teams.

UTC accepts grant applications from nonprofits that seek to advance the education of science, technology, engineering and mathematics to develop the next generation of engineers and scientists. UTC targets programs that include employee volunteerism to spark students’ interest and inspire innovation especially for minorities and women.

Applicants are eligible to apply for a grant one time per calendar year and will receive notification within one quarter of their application submission. UTC accepts grant applications only online, and applicants will be notified only by e-mail if additional information is required as part of the online review process.

The window for submitting the grant application is March 1 thru June 1 each year.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Agilent Technologies Foundation

The Agilent Technologies Foundation focuses their grant-making activities on two areas: advancing university research in the bio-sciences and electronics, and on furthering interest and excellence in pre-university science.

Agilent focuses its philanthropy in communities where it has a major presence. The Foundation partners with national initiatives and local organizations around the world to provide grants that support the local community. Through this strategy, employees and the foundation develop partnerships with targeted, foundation-selected programs. This strategic focus enables us to have a greater impact in our communities.

To that end, they do not accept unsolicited grant requests or proposals.

For more information on the Agilent Technologies Foundation, e-mail them at For examples of programs they fund, please visit their programs and partnership pages.

Let us know if you have any Agilent Technologies employees in your membership? These folks don't accept unsolicited grant proposals ... therefore we will need an internal champion.

Monday, December 5, 2011

National Science Foundation Publishes Computer Science Newsletter

CSEdWeek is here and the National Science Foundation, in support of the celebration, announced its rollout of CS Bits & Bytes, a biweekly newsletter highlighting innovative computer science research aimed at high school teachers and students.

NSF will release CS Bits & Bytes biweekly, beginning on December 5 and continue publication through the end of the 2011/2012 academic year. NSF hopes that educators and parents will use CS Bits & Bytes to inspire students to engage in the multi-faceted world of computer science, to become not just users but creators of technology, and to develop the abilities to utilize computation skills, no matter what their interests.

I encourage all BDPA-Blog readers to subscribe to the NSF publication. If you'd like to receive their newsletter, please send an email to with the text of the message as follows:

subscribe csbytes
for example: subscribe csbytes Eugenia Robinson

Sunday, December 4, 2011

This Week in BDPA (Dec 4-10)

BDPA has 45 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Our hope is that you find reasons to provide tax-deductible support to us here, here or here!

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

AT&T United Way Employee Giving Campaign

BETF proudly receives pledged payments through the AT&T Employee Giving Campaign made by Gibran McDuffie. Our foundation is proud to be part of the annual giving program for AT&T. The donation made by Gibran will be used to support BDPA Chicago programs and services.

Our hope is that other BDPA members will consider making payroll deductions during annual giving campaigns put on by United Way, Combined Federal Campaign or the company itself. Others may simply want to make a one-time donation directly to BETF in support of the youth education programs taking place all over the country.

Please share some 'BDPA-Love' with Gibran in the COMMENTS section below!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Letter of Inquiry: Starbucks Foundation (BDPA New York)

BDPA New York chapter president Renetta English worked with the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) on a letter of inquiry (LOI) to Starbucks Foundation.

We are hopeful that Starbucks Foundation will review our LOI and reply to us with approval to submit a full-fledged grant application. We want to request $5,000 in funding to support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in New York City.

Wish us luck!

Computer Science Education Week (December 5-11, 2010)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) encourages all of our supporters to find a way to get engaged in the upcoming Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek). CSEdWeek 2010 is a call to action to raise awareness about computer science education and computing careers. CSEdWeek is endorsed by the U.S. Congress and designated as December 5-11, 2010 in recognition of the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Hopper (December 9, 1906).

CSEdWeek aims to:
  • Eliminate misconceptions about computer science and computing careers.
  • Communicate the endless opportunities for which computer science education prepares students in K-12, higher education and careers.
  • Provide information and activities for students, educators, parents, and corporations to advocate for computer science education at all levels.
Why Computer Science?
Computer science is ubiquitous; it touches everyone’s daily lives and plays a critical role in today’s society by driving innovation and economic growth. The field is shaping the future by solving some of the world’s grandest challenges and creating today’s most exciting innovations. Computing related jobs remain strong despite the nation’s extraordinary economic challenges.

Why Computer Science Education?

Computer science education is essential to:
  • Expose students to critical thinking and problem solving.
  • Instill understanding of computational thinking for success in the digital age.
  • Train students for computing careers that are exciting, plentiful and financially rewarding.
  • Prepare students to tackle the world’s most challenging problems.
Yet as the role and significance of computing has grown, the teaching of computer science in our K-12 education system has dramatically declined. There is insufficient innovative computing curricula for students at all levels; few students have the opportunity to study computer science in an engaging and rigorous way; there is a lack of ethnic and gender diversity among those who do take computer science courses; and teachers have few opportunities for professional development and certification in computer science education.

Join In! Everyone can participate:
  • Take the CSEdWeek pledge! Register your support and share your plans to celebrate at
  • ‘Like’ CSEdWeek on Facebook at and join the conversation.
  • Blog, tweet, and post to spread the word and raise awareness.
  • Use the #CSEdWeek hashtag.
  • Celebrate CSEdWeek in your BDPA chapter, school, club, or workplace.
  • Visit for other suggested activities and resources.
Sponsors and Partners
CSEdWeek is a collaborative effort of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), National Science Foundation (NSF), Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA), National Center for Women & IT (NCWIT), WGBH, Computing Research Association (CRA), Anita Borg Institute for Women in Technology (ABI), Microsoft, Google, SAS, Intel, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

CSEdWeek is an activity of Computing in the Core, a non-partisan advocacy coalition of associations, corporations, scientific societies, and other non-profits that strive to elevate computer science education to a core academic subject in K-12 education.

Next step is yours.  Will you be engaged with CSEdWeek this year?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Grant Proposal: Go Daddy Cares (BDPA Cleveland)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) partnered with BDPA Cleveland chapter to submit an online grant proposal to Go Daddy Cares. Our funding request seeks support for the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in Cleveland.

Wish us luck ... or you can be more direct with your support of our BDPA programs in Cleveland!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Progressive Technology Project

Progressive Technology Project (PTP) was founded by grassroots organizers to support progressive community-led organizing in low income communities and communities of color. Their mission is to help community-led organizations achieve their goals more effectively and efficiently. PTP programs help community organizers build their skills and understanding to integrate technology into the work of the organizations. To do this, PTP provides a range of services including training, technical assistance, and consulting.

PTP supports the integration of technology to strengthen grassroots social change and community organizing efforts. Typically, PTP makes 10-15 gifts of up to $10k each in equipment, training, and technical assistance.

Does this seem like something that would be of interest to your local chapter or national business area?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Go Daddy Cares

Go Daddy is proud of its long history of charitable patronage and supporting the communities that its employees call home.

During the past three years, Go Daddy’s philanthropic works supported a wide variety of charitable and community organizations dedicated to such causes as domestic violence, child abuse, blind children, teenage homelessness, animal shelters and more. Major recipients of Go Daddy contributions over the past several years include the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, The Emily Center at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, the Arizona Humane Society, the Child Crisis Center of Arizona, Chrysalis, and the Salvation Army.

Go Daddy’s employees have also participated in a series of events to raise money for charitable causes. In 2010, more than 900 Go Daddy employees participated in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Walk to Cure Diabetes in Tempe, and Glendale, AZ. Other Go Daddy employee efforts have included the annual Every Kid Counts drive, as well as donations to St. Mary’s Food Bank during the holiday season.

How to Apply - If you represent a charitable organization or cause which you believe Go Daddy should support, please complete the Go Daddy Cares application.

Go Daddy will review and consider all applications and will request more information if required. All applicants will receive a written notification regarding Go Daddy’s decision about their request.

Please keep in mind that Go Daddy receives a large number of requests. Accordingly, please submit the Go Daddy Charity Application Form well in advance of your need for funding so as to provide Go Daddy sufficient time to fully consider your application.

BETF is willing to partner with any interested local chapter or national business area VP to seek funding from these folks. I imagine it would be best if your chapter registers its domain with Go Daddy, huh?! Anyhow, we operate on a first-come; first-serve basis. So don't procrastinate in your response.

Payroll Pledge: Microsoft Employee Giving Campaign

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) would like to see a much higher level of individual giving via payroll deductions. We estimate that only 2% of BDPA members make donations to support BETF via United Way, employee giving campaigns or Combined Federal Campaign. It would be nice to see that number rise significantly over the coming weeks and months.

As such, we are very happy to see that Kevin Robinson (Microsoft) made a payroll deduction pledge via the Microsoft Employee Giving Campaign to support BDPA programs and services in Charlotte, North Carolina.

There are scores of Microsoft associates and Blacks at Microsoft (BAM) members who know about the good works of BDPA. I'm hopeful that other Microsoft associates will follow the positive example set by Charlotte-based Kevin Robinson.

Learn more about payroll deduction options here.