What a year it has been!
For startups, it has been a challenging one, as investor funding has contracted. But founders are admirably tenacious, and we saw many of them successfully doing more, despite fewer funding opportunities. The 52 tech startup companies in our incubator truly exemplify inspired perseverance.
For tech executives, 2023 has included a return to in-person events and programs. A lot of them. The metro tech and innovation ecosystem continues to collaborate and grow, and with that growth comes an ever-greater number of programs, conferences, and other opportunities to learn and network. It’s exciting to see the vast array of tech and innovation-related offerings now available on a daily basis. Tech Alpharetta alone hosted more than 30 in-person, tech-related programs and events this year, serving 2,000 Alpharetta and north metro area tech executives.
In 2023, incubators, accelerators, and community supporters/leaders were excited to collaborate and launch InnovATL2023, whose diverse event offerings over a three-week period this fall showcased the influence of the region as an innovation hub. I was honored to volunteer with a group of more than 50 area leaders, who rolled up their sleeves and worked with the Metro Atlanta Chamber to help develop this new initiative. The extraordinary level of collaboration across organizations was an inspiration.
Tech Alpharetta continued to successfully grow our brand, programming and reach in 2023. We’re grateful for the dedication of our hard-working board of directors and staff, our partnership with the City of Alpharetta, and the support of our sponsors and tech community.
With the additional help of our Tech Alpharetta Women’s Forum, we also doubled the size of our STEAM Mentoring Program at Innovation Academy High School in Alpharetta. Today, we have 25 highly accomplished female tech executives mentoring 25 high school girls from the school, as part of our effort to inspire more girls to pursue careers in STEAM. We’ve recently incorporated our Women’s Forum and applied for 501(c)(3) status to help us continue to grow our STEAM Mentoring Program successfully. Technology careers offer tremendous opportunities and significantly better-than-average salaries, and we need to encourage and guide more girls and other disadvantaged groups to pursue these career paths.
And, speaking of our STEAM Mentoring Program, we’re very excited to announce that our Fourth Annual Tech Alpharetta Golf Classic, in partnership with Stellar Consulting, which will take place on September 30, 2024, will be donating 50% of its net proceeds to our Women’s Forum STEAM Mentoring Program.
We’ve recently released our 2024 Master Calendar of Events. Check it out at https://techalpharetta.com/events/ and let us know if there are other topics or events you’d like us to consider. As always, we’re here to serve you, our tech community.
Wishing you all a very happy holiday season and a healthy, happy and prosperous 2024!
Karen Cashion, President & CEO