Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Take Five: Sharrarne Morton (BDPA Washington DC)

Many have argued that BDPA is the 'best kept secret' in the IT industry and within the Black community. Few have taken steps to shine the light on BDPA programs and services as well as Sharrarne Morton. Sharrarne began her BDPA career as a media manager for our local BDPA chapter in Washington DC. She supported the creation of a television show, 'Popular Technology' featuring local and national BDPA executives. BDPA is looking for corporate sponsorship to produce over a dozen episodes of that television show in 2013. Sharrarne is a faculty member at Prince George's Community College as well as the owner of her own company, Morton Media.

Sharrarne demonstrated her masterful public relations and marketing skills as the 'mistress of ceremonies' for the 2012 National BDPA Technology Conference held earlier this year in Baltimore.

We asked Sharrarne to share her insights as part of our 'Take Five' Interview Series.

Here is what she had to say:

  1. How did you get involved with BDPA? - I was introduced to BDPA by Perry Carter. He was at an event that I was hosting to celebrate the kickoff of a new show that I was executive producing called, "It Takes A Village." He told me about the BDPA organization and asked if I would be interested in interviewing a few BDPA members for the show. I told him that I would. Shortly thereafter, I invited BDPA Past President Gina Billings and Tec-Masters CEO Marvin Carroll as guests on the show. I've been involved with BDPA ever since!
  2. What do you see as the biggest benefit of your BDPA membership? - The biggest benefit of my BDPA membership is being exposed to some of the best and brightest African Americans in the country. I'm not a techie, so I was unfamiliar with the STEM world and the role that African Americans play within STEM. And, unfortunately, there are no news shows that highlight the incredible things that African Americans are doing in STEM. Thankfully, BDPA has exposed my family and I to a whole new world of Black scientists, chemists, engineers and mathematicians. Now, both of my children want to major in a STEM field when they go to college. I have also exposed my English and journalism students to the STEM world. It's been a win-win!
  3. What future evolution or change would you like to see in BDPA? - I would like to see BDPA increase student membership and do more to increase awareness for students who may not be majoring in STEM, but whose field will eventually coincide with STEM, e.g., media and technology. Many students (and people in general) are intimidated by STEM. Perhaps BDPA can implement programs that will help lessen the "scare of math and science" for students, and in turn, increase student membership.
  4. What would you like Corporate America to know about BDPA? - I would like Corporate America to know that BDPA is the best place from which to recruit and hire the best workforce in the world.
  5. Any advice for people considering a donation to the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF)? - My advice would be that if you want the best return on your investment (ROI), as well as a sound investment in the future of our children and their success, a donation to the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation beats any stock or bond, hands down!

Please contact us by email (corpsales@bdpa.org) if you want to learn more about being a sponsor for the Popular Technology television show! Also, feel free to reply to this post if you have anything you want to say to (or about) Sharrarne's interview.

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