Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Top 10 BDPA Chapters (Membership, July 2017)

The lifeblood of any nonprofit association is its membership. We have a chapter who leads the nation in BDPA members.... BDPA Cincinnati.   The chapter ... led by its president, Shawnda Peterson ... continues to amaze others by its consistent growth.  The chapter recently hosted the 39th BDPA Technology Conference in downtown Cincinnati and it was a remarkable event and everyone appeared to have a great time! 

Judaea Lane
The largest movement came from BDPA St. Louis chapter who moved up to 4th place as a result of the agreement they came to with Daugherty Business Solutions.   Malcom Mathis is the president of the chapter and they are doing well.  We continue to operate under the leadership of acting National BDPA VP-Membership Management Judaea Lane.   Her team now includes Chad White (Dallas).  Her efforts have allowed BDPA to continue to grow.   She realizes that we need to work hard to keep membership growth and retention higher.

BDPA believes in the management maxim -- you get what you measure.  Let us assess the numbers in order to honor those local BDPA chapters who are demonstrating success in their efforts to recruit and retain members.  Let's take a look at the ten largest chapters in BDPA-Nation:
  1. Cincinnati - president, Shawnda Peterson
  2. Detroit - president, Loraine Stewart-David
  3. Chicago - president, Reggie Rush 
  4. St. Louis - president, Malcom Mathis
  5. Atlanta - president, Victor Montgomery
  6. Indianapolis - president, Delano Robinson
  7. Philadelphia - president, Cedric Edwards
  8. Washington DC - president, Perry Carter
  9. New Jersey - president, Goldie Bonney
  10. Triangle - president, Carl Hill 
The number of chapters now belonging to the 'BDPA Century Club' currently stands at two.  The benefit of having powerful leadership is obvious when we see that Cincinnati and Detroit each have over 100 members. One of the common denominators for each of these chapters is that they place a high premium on the delivery of quality programs and services to their members. These chapters work hard to ensure that there is a strong return on the $100 investment that each member makes thru annual dues.

National president Mike Williams recently touted the value that organizational re-branding has made on BDPAWhat are your thoughts about the value of BDPA membership? What can your local chapter do to improve the value-proposition for you on a personal or professional level?

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Deja Lindsey Uses Her Eli Lilly Scholarship at Georgetown University

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Eli Lilly awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to three (3) students. One of those students is senior Deja Lindsey from Chicago, IL, who will use the scholarship to support her study of computer science and sociology at Georgetown University. She has been involved with BDPA since her freshman year of college, and by attending chapter events and national conferences, she has secured a summer internship and made lifelong connections.

On campus, she is a member of the Georgetown Cheerleading Team and works as a technology specialist. She is also a recent inductee of the Alpha Kappa Delta International Sociology Honor Society and the current president of Georgetown’s chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers.

Deja Lindsey * Eli Lilly Scholar
Besides technology, she is extremely passionate about giving back to her community and spends most of her free time volunteering with elementary school students in the DC Public School system and working with Girls Got IT!, a program she founded that works to introduce young, underprivileged girls to technology. She aspires to work as a technologist that creates or improves applications to better the lives of humans around the world.

We asked Deja to share her thoughts on BDPA:

"Being a member of Black Data Processing Associates has had a great impact on my personal and career development. From membership in the BDPA I was able to network and make connections with employees from Johnson and Johnson, JPMorgan Chase, and Eli Lilly and Company, all of which I have spent summers interning. Last year’s national conference in Atlanta actually showed me a new potential career path that I plan to pursue in my post-grad endeavors."

Deja Lindsey * IT Showcase Winner
"This year’s national conference specifically has meant the most to me. Not only did I participate as a Youth Technology Camp workshop presenter, I also competed in the IT Showcase and won first place! While this conference was much busier for me than any of my past conferences, it challenged me in a variety of ways and helped me make many new professional connections. Being a member of BDPA has exposed me to more Black IT professionals, empowering me to continue my path into the information technology career field. My most memorable moment in BDPA is winning the IT Showcase because I worked very hard throughout the school year and summer and it was very rewarding to see my hard work pay off."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Eli Lilly Scholarship for BDPA Students. We look forward to supporting Deja's career as he seeks to advance his career in the technology industry!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Long Story Short: Malcom Mathis II (BDPA St. Louis)

Mr. Malcom B. Mathis II works at Monsanto, a fortune 500 Agricultural Technology company, as an IT Business Architect for North America Supply Chain IT. Malcom has worked at Monsanto since 2011 and has taken on increasing responsibility each year. His work has taken him to numerous places in North America like Illinois, California and Iowa as well as Hawaii, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Malcom is an active contributor to the St. Louis community. He currently serves as President of the executive board of BDPA St. Louis chapter, a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing diversity in Information Technology. He volunteers in the Science and Agriculture Education Outreach program at Monsanto, chairs the Monsanto-BDPA scholarship committee and is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

Malcom Mathis (BDPA St. Louis Prez)
Malcom received his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. He went on to receive a Master’s in Analytical Chemistry from Kent State University in Ohio.

This blog wanted to get a more personal look into the personality of this rising BDPA leader. We asked Malcom to give brief answers to some odd questions. We hope you enjoy this new feature that we simply call, 'Long Story Short...'


  1. Simple things that make you happiest? - I get a flutter in my heart when my children playfully interact with each other.
  2.  
  3. Who You'd Like to Meet? - I would like to meet someone from the distant past and someone from the distant future (preferably of my lineage). It would be great to discuss how far we have come and where we are going.
  4.  
  5. Favorite Way to de-stress after a long week? - Play a round of golf. There is nothing like getting out and enjoying nature while playing golf; however, if I’m not hitting the ball well, it can add to the stress.
  6.  
  7. How you kill time in airports? - I try to time my arrival so I won’t have to wait long to board the plane. However, I will bring a book to read or spark up conversation with a random person. Many times I end up talking on the phone with my wife.


Malcom is an outstanding leader for his chapter! He is doing all the right things to grow his chapter and I hope that other chapter leaders around the country look up to Malcom for support.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Daniel Powell Uses His Johnson & Johnson Scholarship at Jackson State University

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Johnson & Johnson awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to nine (9) students. One of those students is Daniel Powell from Jackson MS, who will use the scholarship to support his study of computer science at Jackson State University (JSU).

Daniel Powell * JnJ Scholar
Daniel Powell is a senior working towards his bachelor of science degree. He is currently employed as a Big Data researcher and has experience working in cyber security at the JSU e-center. His future plans include earning a masters in Computer Science and having a successful career as a game developer.

We asked Daniel to share his thoughts about BDPA:

"My most memorable moment with BDPA would have to be receiving the notice that I was selected to receive their Johnson & Johnson scholarship. It will definitely help my academic career and I am grateful I was able to be part of such an organization."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Johnson & Johnson Scholarship. We look forward to supporting Daniel's career as he seeks to advance his career in the technology industry! 

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Ashley Shorter Uses Wanda Everett Scholarship at Florida A&M University

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Daugherty Business Solutions awarded a $2,500 college Wanda Everett scholarship to Ashley Shorter.  Ashley is a member of the BDPA St. Louis chapter who will use the scholarship to pursue her computer science degree.

Ashley Shorter
Ashley Shorter is a second year computer science student attending Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University. My career goals include becoming a software developer to increase the diversity pipeline at major technology companies. While she is in school, Ashley works in the ITS Department as a Web Developer, and she is currently a Web Development Engineer Intern at Express Scripts.

We asked Ashley to share her thoughts on BDPA:

"I began my involvement with BDPA during my junior year of high school in the High School Computer Competition in the St. Louis Chapter. Since then, my personal network and knowledge of the IT industry has expanded immensely. What I learned during HSCC enabled me to get a job at my university as a Web Developer as well as a summer internship on the Web Optimization team. I continue my involvement with BDPA by competing in the Mobile Application Competition this year, and I will continue my participation with BDPA for many years to come."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Wanda Everett Scholarship for BDPA Students. We look forward to supporting Ashley's career as she seeks to advance her career in the technology industry!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Yaw Asante Uses His BCBS Scholarship at Princeton University

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that BlueCross BlueShield Scholarship awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to Yaw Asante. Yaw is one of the BDPA Cincinnati HSCC students who will use the scholarship to support his education at Princeton University.

Yaw Asante * BCBS Scholar (2015)
Yaw Asante is a student with the BDPA Cincinnati Chapter. He is a native of Cincinnati, born to an Illinoisan mother and a Ghanaian father, and a graduate of Walnut Hills High School. He will start this fall at Princeton University where he plans to study molecular biology and computer science. As a student, he has varied set of interests. In class at Walnut Hills, he came to be in 11 AP classes, including high-level chemistry, physics, calculus and computer science courses. Outside of class, he promoted an environmentally conscious school campus with his school's Sustainability Club and argued policy in diplomatic with its Model United Nations Club. He maintains a firm belief that information technology is the most paramount field of our time and that understanding computers is the best way to improve the efficiency and precision of any system. He finds this especially pertinent in his summer position as a research intern with Cincinnati Children's Hospital in which he builds software tools and collects data to helps doctors better understand the nature of rare diseases. By actively seeking out opportunities to expand his technical abilities through both work and programs like BDPA, Yaw hopes to continue on through college and into the workforce to use computer science to analyze and improve systems that affect how we all live.

We asked Yaw to share his thoughts on his BDPA experience:

Yaw at BDPA Computer Camp
"For me, BDPA provided real-world experience in what it meant to be an information technology professional. Saturdays spent at BDPA were like forays into the professional world, with experiences that far exceeded my expectations. I began with BDPA in the spring of 2014, hoping to expand my knowledge of the world of computing. I had already had some experience with computers simply from use. However, with BDPA, I have been able to expand my knowledge even further. I learned about not only technical aspects of working in IT, like programming languages and software design skills, but also the professional aspects of IT. Our adviser, Mr. Frank Hill, would often take time out of the day to discuss with us the importance of group cooperation and time management. Many of these skills would be crucial as our team prepared for the High School Computer Competition.

Yaw (2nd from left) and other members of 2015 HSCC Team
Of my three experiences with HSCC, I remember the pre-competition practice session of the 2015 BDPA Technology Conference held in Washington DC. During that session, our full team of members, ranging for 10th to 12th grade, meticulously went down the list of programs required for our .NET application and began to formulate a game plan what we would do first, debate who would be at the computer first and go over what our timeline would look like. It was in this rehearsal that I saw poignantly how Mr. Hill's training could come together and just how much software development can depend on a well managed team.

I greatly appreciated the opportunity, afforded by BDPA, to get an early glimpse of the professional IT world and I now more eagerly await my chance to enter it. Armed with the lessons BDPA has taught me over the years, I hope to not only survive but thrive at what is to be the challenging yet rewarding experience of concentrating in computer science at college."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the BlueCross BlueShield Scholarship for BDPA Students. We look forward to supporting Yaw's career as he seeks to advance his career in the technology industry!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Pierre Cireus Uses His Johnson & Johnson Scholarship at FAMU

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Johnson & Johnson awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to nine (9) students. One of those students is Pierre Cireus from Tallahassee, Florida, who will use the scholarship to support his study of computer science at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU).

Pierre Cireus was born in Haiti in 1998, but he moved to the USA with his parents in 2007. He graduated high school with Honors in 2016 while I was enrolled in dual enrollment at Polk State College, a local community college.

Pierre Cireus * JnJ Scholar
Over the summer of 2017, Pierre interned at Ion Media in Clearwater, FL. Later that summer Pierre was in a study abroad program in Brazil, Sao Paulo. He is a growing linguist with fluency in four languages (English, Creole, Spanish, and Portuguese). He plans to graduate in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in computer science, and then study abroad in pursuit of a masters in international business and interpretations.

We asked Pierre to share his thoughts on BDPA:

"My involvement in BDPA chapter is not very extensive. My University does not have a chapter of its own (hence I could not participate in all the activities), therefore I was simply adopted by BDPA Orlando a few months ago. Although, I have to say, the BDPA chapter offers a lot of opportunities for young African American men and women to learn and pursue an education, and that is how the BDPA chapter has impacted me."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Johnson & Johnson Scholarship. We look forward to supporting Pierre's career as he seeks to advance his career in the technology industry!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Priyanka Jain Uses Her Johnson & Johnson Scholarship at Notre Dame

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Johnson & Johnson awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to nine (9) students. One of those students is Priyanka Jain from Albuquerque, New Mexico, who will use the scholarship to support her study of chemical engineering at the University of Notre Dame.

Priyanka Jain
Priyanka’s high school accolades include founding a science bowl club to spread STEM awareness, captaining a Model UN team and several Science Olympiad events, serving as an ambassador to the National Society of High School Scholars, and being a member of several national honor societies. She is a Class of 2020 Hesburgh-Yusko Scholar and a National Merit scholar. She was a finalist for AXA Achievement Scholarships and was the only finalist from the state of New Mexico for the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation. She has a Minor Planet 33580 named after her by LINEAR Program of MIT Lincoln Lab. Priyanka has also been the JV Tennis team co-captain and loves to play piano and violin.

Priyanka has over 5 years of research experience in the field of Biomedical Engineering. She hopes to develop the next generation of cancer treatment and has been honored for her work at several national science fairs. Her recent project, focused on developing a novel cancer treatment, placed second in the Biomedical and Health category at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

At Notre Dame, Priyanka is a rising sophomore with a hope to startup a Biotechnology company. She continues to do her research during the school year and volunteering work to make a lasting impact on her community. For summer of 2017, she volunteered for 9 weeks in clinical medicine and public health in remote areas of Peru, at an elevation of 8000 feet and areas impacted by recent massive flooding. She was involved in different surgeries, general patient care and checkups, as well as medical campaigns in remote areas to bring supplies and care to highly impoverished areas.

We asked Priyanka to share her thoughts about BDPA:

"Last year, I participate at BioGENEius competition and was honored by Ms. Seema Kumar, Vice President of Innovation, Global Health and Policy Communication, Johnson & Johnson, when I placed 2nd for my project on Cancer research. She had a quite an influence on me. Winning BDPA scholarship moment was really special when I found out the morning I was supposed to go to deliver medical supplies to a remote area in Peru. Winning BDPA has motivated me to do a summer internship at Johnson & Johnson and to double my research efforts in the field of medicine and community work to make world a better place."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Johnson & Johnson Scholarship. We look forward to supporting Priyanka's career as she seeks to start a Biotechnology company!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Jalil Peterman Will Use Bemley Scholarship at Coastal Carolina University

Jalil Peterman
BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Jalil Peterman will use the Bemley Scholarship awarded all the members of the BDPA Greater Columbia High School Computer Competition (HSCC) team with a $1,000 college scholarship to support his study of graphic design at the Coastal Carolina University. Jalil is a 2017 graduate from Dutch Fork High School. Regarding career goals, Jalil plans to study graphic design at Coastal Carolina University to gain better knowledge of this field and become a Graphics Designer for a shoe or clothing company.

We asked Jalil to share his thoughts on BDPA:

"The most memorable moment from BDPA that I can take with me would of course be the experience of the HSCC competition. From the day we left for the conference until the day we got home, we had a very unique experience. I remember our instructor coming over to our room to give us presenting tips and reviewing key words with us. The day of the competition had my mind everywhere, being in a room full of other competitors that possess the same skill as us but only few could come out on top. On the day of the award ceremony I was very surprised when they called our name for coming in third place. Knowing you worked hard on something and it paying off like that is something I will never forget.


BDPA Gr. Columbia (Braxton, Briana, Jalil)
Participating in the BDPA program has left me with a more open mind about how to solve problems and most definitely how to interact with others and present myself to others. I have also taken away 'how to plan out' and 'how to get certain task done' is a much better use of my time."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Bemley Scholarship. We look forward to supporting Jalil's career as he seeks to advance in the technology industry!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Jordan Brown Will Use Monsanto Scholarship at University of Missouri

Jordan Brown
BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce that Monsanto awarded a $2,500 college scholarship to three (3) students.  One of those students is Jordan Brown from St. Louis, MO who will use the scholarship to support his study of graphic design at the University of Missouri.

We asked Jordan to share his thoughts on BDPA.
"Receiving the Monsanto/BDPA Scholarship has lessened my financial burden thus allowing me to focus on my academic pursuit in addition to balancing financial goals and academic acuity. Although my current major is Graphic Design, In the near future, I see myself with a career in the coexisting fields of Architecture and Information Technology. Currently a student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, my overall career goal is to master and educate others on the process of critical thinking and problem solving through operational systems and other conceptions in both the Information Technology and architectural fields."

BDPA is blessed to have such a young and talented student as a winner of the Monsanto Scholarship. We look forward to supporting Jordan's career as he seeks to advance in the technology industry!