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City Meetup: Madrid Spain, 2014

About

Switch is shaping the future of our global innovation economy. One built and run by founders, capital allocators and ecosystem players that are truly and fully representative of the challenges they tackle, the solutions they scale, and the humans they serve.

ally watch
“We’re laser focused on where we can create action forward, and, for us, most of that will be figuring out how to scale and create access to solutions.”
the gauardian
“We still have a long way to go to acceptance. There’s definitely a movement to say that, to make a successful startup happen, you don’t have to be working a hundred hours a night.”
forbes logo
“The general mindset and actions of traditional venture capital players ignores the well-documented lack of capital being allocated to underrepresented founders.”

Shift mindsets. Break things. Build new systems. Switch the future.

Switch, formerly Women 2.0, has built a robust space that invites tackling heavy topics like gender and race inequality and calling for and creating pathways to action, having proved our ecosystem strength with a bounty of accessible programs and resources for founders, investors and the broader tech space.

Our History

We’ve always been squarely focused on equality and equity, intersectionality, allyship and inclusion.

2007

First PITCH Competition
for women-led startups

2013

Community reaches over
25 cities worldwide

2020

Fully virtual Accelerator
and capital access
programming

timeline mobile

2006

Founded in
San Francisco

2009

Launch of Founder
Labs and
accelerator model

2016

Allyship program launched,
now REWIRE

2022

Women 2.0 becomes Switch!

Our History

We’ve always been squarely focused on equality and equity, intersectionality, allyship and inclusion.

2007
First PITCH Competition for women-led startups

2013
Community reaches over 25 cities worldwide

2020
Fully virtual Accelerator and capital access programming

timeline mobile

2006
Founded in San Francisco

2009
Launch of Founder Labs and accelerator model

2016
Allyship program launched,
now REWIRE

2022
Women 2.0 becomes Switch!

Team

Kate Brodock

Kate Brodock

Kate is CEO of Switch and General Partner at the W Fund, a venture capital firm investing into women and underrepresented-led tech startups.

She’s lived in the tech startup world for almost 20 years, and has played an active leadership role in the women in tech and entrepreneurship ecosystem throughout, having previously led as President a global, 60+ chapter organization focused on the issue for several years prior to coming to Women 2.0 (now Switch) in 2016. The two decade combination of her operational experience in startups, her active work with thousands of early-stage founders, and her deep expertise on and central commitment to gender and representation in the ecosystem has positioned her as a expert and leader on the creation and development of a more equitable future for our innovation economy.

She’s also an EIR at LaunchNY, and a long-time mentor for Techstars. She’s held prior roles as CMO of untapt, an AI-driven tech talent marketplace based in NYC, COO of Atribute, a next-gen scaled learning platform, and Adjunct Professor in PR and Marketing at at Syracuse University.

Kate has keynoted, spoken at and been featured in 100s of places, including SXSW, Collision Conference, Fast Company, Fifteen Seconds, UNLEASH, Microsoft, IBM, MSNBC, Techcrunch, IBT, the BBC and Al Jazeera.

She holds BAs in Political Science and African American History from the University of Rochester, an MBA in Entrepreneurship and Marketing from Goizueta Business School at Emory University and an MA in International Relations from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

When she’s not doing all *that*, she’s a very non-professional (but adventurous!) athlete, an equally as non-professional musician, can be found outdoors in any weather — skiing, biking, hiking, sailing — loves a good meal with bubbly, craft beer and good friends, hilariousness and life. Her husband is a startup-web-developer-turned-beer-guy and they live on a hops farm in Upstate New York with their two boys.

CEO of Switch & General Partner at W Fund

Corey Ponder

Corey Ponder

Corey Ponder is an empathy practitioner and educator who works with innovative companies and individuals to build empathetic spaces for inclusive and diverse experiences.

Corey believes in the power of human connection and how that drives real impact.  Over his 11 years of professional experience as a policy analyst in the public sector and a program manager and policy professional in the private sector, Corey knows that an emphasis on emotional intelligence—self-awareness, empathy, and interpersonal skills—leads to a more committed, productive, and engaged workforce creating a real impact in the workplace and spaces they occupy.

Corey has scaled diversity initiatives across several companies, including with CIA and Facebook, and has spoken on allyship and empathy for several organizations, including Google, Chan Zuckerberg initiative, Fitbit, Expedia, InnovatorsBox, and General Assembly.  He has also developed and facilitated many workshops on empathy, allyship, bias, privilege, and race.  He continues to publish on these topics as well — essays, podcasts, and articles — being featured in Fortune Magazine's raceAhead newsletter, Women 2.0, and Change Catalyst's Leading With Empathy Series.

Corey holds a Master's in Public Policy from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Bachelor's in Political Science from Vanderbilt University.

Senior Director of Empathy & Allyship

Hilliary Turnipseed

Hilliary Turnipseed

Hilliary Turnipseed is a talent acquisition executive, with a rich background in early-stage technology startups, media and social impact organizations. She seamlessly integrates diversity, equity and inclusion strategies into her work, with an emphasis on improving team performance, creating frameworks and meaningful employee engagement. Hilliary has supported recruitment efforts for notable organizations such as Discovery, Axios, Black Girls CODE, POLITICO and CuriosityStream. 

In addition to her work with us, Hilliary leads talent and DEI for Washington, DC-based creative firm, Subject Matter, while also running her talent advisory consultancy, Hill Street Strategies. 

Director of Talent Initiatives and Employer Branding

Jen Tacheff

Jen Tacheff

Jennifer Tacheff is an award-winning coach, leader and strategist, who helps companies and entrepreneurs to grow and scale their impact.

CEO & Founder of Manifest Advisors

Kali Hailegiorgis

Kali Hailegiorgis

Kali Hailegiorgis is a Bachelor of Law Student dual-enrolled at Duke University and its Sino-American counterpart Duke Kunshan University. She studies Ethics and Leadership with a track in public Policy where she is exploring how the confidence gap affects women’s representation in decision making. Originally from Ethiopia, Kali is a true global citizen with her education spanning the US and China, a career spanning the US and EU, and currently calling Ghana home.

The desire to positively affect the world around her, with less bureaucracy, led Kali from public policy to the world of impact-driven business! Her dynamic background includes sales, business development, marketing, social media, public relations, community development, and partnerships management. She is passionate about scaling impact-driven businesses through strategic partnerships and marketing. 

Kali has always worked to encourage diversity and inclusion around her. From having difficult conversations around inclusion with people in her everyday life to organizing a workshop series to educate and incite her diverse school community into a conversation about inclusion and acceptance. She is the organizer of the Diversity Series at Duke Kunshan University, a workshop series inciting dialogue around race, gender, sexuality, and what it means to create a welcoming and inclusive community. Her personal, academic, and career interests have converged at the intersection of women’s empowerment and education, which is what she plans to pursue her long-term career in. Her work at women 2.0 allows her to further evolve her understanding of women’s issues and what it takes to move the needle forward in the work towards equality. She researches and develops meaningful content to share throughout the Switch network, with a focus on scaling and nurturing our community.

When she isn’t writing research papers and analyzing social media insights for Women 2.0, you can find Kali organizing book swap events in her home Accra to connect people over books and good conversations!

 

Community Management Associate

Florence Luna

Florence Luna

Florence Luna is a first-year Cornell Johnson MBA student excited to help support underrepresented founders and solutions that impact traditionally underserved communities. She is currently a Fund Associate at Big Red Ventures and Investment Fellow at Purple Sage Ventures. She is thrilled to help support the Women 2.0 mission and looks forward to connecting with you!

MBA Intern, Investments & Capital Access

Board

Shaherose Charania

Shaherose Charania

Senior Director at Nike's Valiant Labs

Senior Director at Nike's Valiant Labs, Angel Investor, Advisor at Eniac VC & Republic, Former CEO & Founder of Women 2.0 & Founder Labs.

Brittney Cunningham

Brittney Cunningham

Head of Partner Education at Shopify

Head of Partner Education at Shopify, Founder & CTO at Atribute, Former Education Modernization at Facebook.

Jenny Fielding

Jenny Fielding

General Partner at The Fund

GP at The Fund, Adjunct Professor at Columbia University, Former MD at Techstars NYC.

Monique Woodard

Monique Woodard

General Partner at Cake Ventures

GP at Cake Ventures, Founder of Black Founders, Former Partner at 500Startups.

Paul Zikopoulos

Paul Zikopoulos

VP of Big Data Cognitive Systems at IBM

VP at IBM, Award-winning professional speaker/author, being the best dad he can.

Anne Flannery

Anne Flannery

President of Out Loud Ventures & Director of the Syracuse University Sport & Human Performance Initiative

Sports entrepreneurs, Founding team of the WNBA, Founding member of the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame

Christie Houlihan

Christie Houlihan

Family Office Executive

Investor in female-founded early-stage startups, LP at The W Fund, and former MD at single family office and commercial real estate firm.

Charles Hudson

Charles Hudson

Managing Partner at Precursor VC

GP at Precursor, Lecturer at Stanford University, Board of Venture Forward

Nikki Barua

Nikki Barua

CEO & Co-Founder of Beyond Barriers

CEO of Beyond Barriers, EY Winning Woman, LA Lakers Women of Entrepreneurship, Board of Women in Innovation.

Elisa Miller-Out

Elisa Miller-Out

Managing Partner at Chloe Capital

GP at Chloe Capital, EIR at Cornell University, Advisor at NYSERDA, Co-Founder & CFO at Singlebrook