Expo inspires tech women to ‘grow better together’

Knoxville Technology Council’s Women in Tech presents its inaugural expo event from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 10, in Lighthouse Knoxville, 6800 Baum Drive in Bearden.

“This year’s Expo theme is ‘Grow Better Together’ and is an exciting opportunity for women to step away from their day-to-day role and invest in personal and professional growth,” said Lisa Atkinson, managing partner with Zelvin Security in Farragut and communications chair with KTech Council’s WiT.

“The WiT Expo offers an opportunity to network with a diverse group of talented women across the technology environment ranging from entry-level to seasoned technology professionals,” she added. “Together, generations of technology professionals will learn from each other and grow professionally through a series of motivating workshops.”

“Some of the best things about Knoxville are the culture, the history and the deep connections that people have with each other and this city,” said WiT Committee chair, Stephanie Flood, CIO with Clayton Homes. “I am thrilled that our first Knox Women in Tech Expo is going to help to build and strengthen these connections for so many people in our area.”

“We hope to have 125 to 150 attend,” said Holly Armes of Zotec Partners and event committee member.

Tickets, which cost $10 for students, $25 for WiT members and $50 for no-members, can be purchased through Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/women- in-tech-expo-grow-better-together-tickets-435742707167

“This is sure to be the WiT event of the year,” Atkinson said, pointing out advance sale tickets are required, and lunch is included.

“Our general goal is to reach women in technology and their allies,” she added. “We expect there will be women who are educators who work with K-12 students in technology and also people who work in the tech field … as a profession.

“There are many people who work with technology and support individuals who work directly in technology and are considered an ally to the field.”

“We’ve even had some dudes show up, and that is fine,” said Stephanie Alexander, co-chair of community outreach.

Atkinson said keynote speaker Julie Wilkes, North American wellness lead with Accenture, will “bring energy, motivation and inspiration with her award-winning style of speaking on building resiliency.

“Wilkes has spoken and presented globally, including at the Tower of London, the White House, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, TED Talks, National Business Group on Health, International Women’s Day and the U.S. Department of Defense,” Atkinison said. “She was previously selected as one of the ‘25 Remarkable Women’ from Role Model Magazine and one of 12 ‘Women You Should Know’ by a Central Ohio Women’s organization.”

Local thought leader Dr. Angelique Adams will lead an interactive workshop based on her book, “You’re More Than a Diversity Hire Women in STEM: The Five Keys To Unlocking Your Full Potential.”

“Dr. Adams is known for helping businesses build diverse STEM leaders and motivating people to overcome challenges,” Atkinson said. “In 2022, Dr. Adams was named to the list of Top Ten Most Influential People in Leadership Consulting by CIO Views Magazine.”

Other featured speakers include Dr. Cynthia Hackney on emotional intelligence and Lindsey Clark on networking strategies and other topics. Participants will receive a LinkedIn profile review, free professional headshot, networking opportunities, an Expo T-shirt, lunch — and the first 80 registrants will receive a signed copy of Adams’ book.

Event is made possible through support from such local businesses as Patriot Talent Solutions, Accenture, CGI, Cigna, Clayton, Covenant Health, Ahead, Optiv, Solomon Page, Perfect Serve, Pilot Flying J, VMWare and other partners, JTV, Pure Storage, UDig, Zotec Partners and Zelvin Security.

For more information, visit https://www.knoxtech.org/women-in-technology/