By Ellen Long
The room was abuzz with a type of nervous excitement. A group of women from the farthest corners of the Wilmington business community had joined together to be apart of something new, a different kind of Wilma initiative.
The moment I entered the room I realized I had stepped into a world I knew existed, but had never seen gathered in one place. It was a network of courageous, intelligent women that defied the odds by living and thriving in a male dominated sphere: the world of technology.
I entered TekMountain’s impressive space with intrigue. Considering myself quite the able networker, I moved about the room to gauge the type of conversations inherent, anxious for a chance to jump in. Instead, I was left with a bemused smile for what I was witnessing.
It was unlike any networking event I had ever been to. Ladies were munching on crackers and dialoging about HTML code, database engineering, and Linux settings. Gone were the smooth pitches and business card handouts. In its place were genuine, unrehearsed and authentic offerings – some figuring out for the first time how to simplify the complex, just to explain what they did everyday!
Their fearless leaders, the graceful and poised Audrey Speicher – partnership manager at CastleBranch and a recent finalist of Wilma’s Women to Watch - and the elegant, intelligent Emilyanne Atkinson – senior database manager at CastleBranch and a member of Wilma’s elite leadership program – moved about the room to welcome new attendees and foster the collaborative spirit embodied by all members of Cape Fear Women in Tech.
But this group wasn’t about to spend the whole evening in small talk. At its core, the group comes together for strategic learning, self-development, and a collaboration that arises from mutual, intelligent connection.
Tonight, the event was moderated by PR mogul and CloudWyze Communicator Ann Revell. The topic? A fireside chat with Julie Thomas, CEO and co-founder of DocsInk, a local tech start-up. As Julie shared her successes, challenges and wisdom, the ladies laughed and fired questions, eager for knowledge and courage to chase their own dreams. By its finale, CFWIT members were left with solid advice for their own entrepreneur path, and an extra shot of energy to fuel their creative spirits.
So to all the Wilmington women interested in the technological sphere, I urge you to become a part of something new, something different. I promise you will not find a more interesting, welcoming group of women that challenge and encourage one another to be better than their yesterday selves.
Don’t miss the next event! We’ll offer FREE website coding instruction during the Cucalorus event on Tuesday, November 10th, Union Station from 4-6pm. All female beginners welcome! See you then!