Founder City Project wants to teach entrepreneurs how to execute on diversity policies


When Susan J. Fowler published herfrank account of experiencing sexism and harassment during her employment at Uber, it reignited a conversation on a culture that’s common in many tech startups.

While many founders are public about the fact that diversity is important to them, Fowler’s story — and so many others before hers — has forced tech companies to think about what they’re actually doing about it.

On March 29, the Founder City Project, a collective meant to provide support to Toronto and Waterloo Region-based entrepreneurs, wants to train over 500 founders and employees about what it means to actually encourage diversity within a company through an interactive web-based Q&A session.

“We’re using the same ‘experience-sharing’ technique that’s grown The Founder City Project, where leaders share their own real stories, rather than forcing best practices down your throat,” said founder Ben Baldwin.

Hosted by Baldwin, people leaders at several local companies will share their thoughts on what it means to “execute” on gender diversity. Leaders include Wave’s Ashira Gobrin, OMERS Ventures’ Sara Cooper, Klick’s Michelle Gorman, Communitech’s Heather Galt, and MaRS’ Daneal Charney.

“There’s some confusion around diversity and its ‘execution’, in particular gender diversity, as we’ve seen via Uber,” said Baldwin. “Is it a ratio? Is it someone calling you out for bad practices? What happens if I make a mistake? Does ‘committing to diversity’ make our companies more competitive or less competitive.”

Entrepreneurs interested in participating can hit this link when the webinar starts on March 29, between 2 to 3 p.m.

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Freelance tech writer. Former BetaKit News Editor.

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