When the Google manifesto grabbed headlines last week, several women in Philly tech went in on the doc and Google’s accountability.
Yasmine Mustafa, cofounder of ROAR for Good, had an additional thought: is there a way to connect with local companies who want to demonstrate that they care about these issues?
She of course already had the answer — Athena.
As announced by our sister site, ROAR recently started shipping the Athena, its wearable personal safety device.
To help celebrate, the social enterprise partnered with Houwzer, the real estate platform founded by Benjamin’s Desk cofounder Mike Maher to provide Athena devices to its agents.
Given the safety concerns surrounding real estate agents, the partnership was a no-brainer for both Maher and Mustafa.
“The sense of awareness is higher among real estate agents because most of them are women,” Mustafa explained. “Most of them are meeting a stranger for the very first time in a secluded area, in an empty house.”
While thankfully none of the Houwzer agents have reported safety incidents, Maher told Technical.ly that he saw this opportunity as a great way to be proactive.
“Athena will help Houwzer provide a support network for our agents, even when we can’t be there physically,” he said. “Athena is another layer of protection that shows our employees they are valued.”
It’s a sentiment that also seems to be shared by the agents themselves. We reached out to a pair of Houwzer agents, Allison Dubovsky and Scott Hicks, and both seemed quite pleased with the device’s utility.
Since we last visited him, Justin Siebel has pushed forward with his design company, Exit Velocity Design. Now he and Ashley Hudrick have started a new venture that takes a deadlier turn.
Siebel and Hudrick will set up shop in Siebel’s space in the Bok Building, the former South Philly school that’s being converted into a massive hub for artists and makers, for a series of three-day courses on different techniques in special effects (SFX) makeup.
Day one focuses on demonstrations, while the remaining two days see participants paired up and testing out their newfound skills and techniques on each other. They catered to the “at-home” artist, and amateurs to professionals are all welcome.
“I don’t believe in natural talent,” Siebel confidently told Technical.ly. For Siebel, it’s crucial that artists understand exactly what they’re putting their models through to improve their form.
It’s not enough to identify and rally around the young rising stars in our communities, we must also “want to handhold [them].”
That’s what technologist Jumoke Dada said at Leading into the NExT Century, a leadership conference hosted by NExT Philadelphia, the Urban League’s network of young professionals.
By “handhold,” Dada and her fellow panelists — women from the finance and healthcare industries — emphasized the importance of taking a personal touch with young people. It’s a sentiment that resonated deeply with attendee Zarifa Roberson, who believes in the importance of supplying young people with the opportunity to “see life outside of Philadelphia because so many don’t get [that] chance.”
Hosted last Saturday, Leading into the NExT Century focused on equipping young Philadelphian professionals with vital leadership skills for their careers and highlighting industry growth in several key sectors in the city. To better understand the future of business trades for young African Americans in the area, NExT hosted an industry specific panel that featured Dada, cofounder of Project ALOE and founder of Tech Women Network; Dixieanne James, VP of strategic planning and business development for Albert Einstein Healthcare Network and Jasmine Richards, lead international equity analyst at FIS Group.