Barnard College’s Campaign to Boost Women Entrepreneurs

The Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College in New York City has established the Athena Pledge program in an effort to promote women entrepreneurs. The program asks the nation’s thousands of accelerator and incubator programs to take the Athena Pledge, which states that at least one third of the start-up firms that receive support have at least one women founder as an equity owner and have women in their top management teams. Signers of the Athena Pledge also agree to divulge statistics about women in the start-up firms they support.

kolbert_kKathryn Kolbert, director of the Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College, stated that “there is a dearth of women in the start-up world, particularly in Silicon Valley. The Athena Pledge recognizes that making a conscious effort to be more inclusive of women entrepreneurs will improve performance, spark innovation, and open markets. The bottom line is that women add value.”

A number of influential tech leaders have already signed the Athena Pledge, including: Eric Grimmelmann, president and CEO of the New York Technology Council; Joanne Wilson, angel investor at Gotham Gal Ventures; Adam Quinton, partner at Lucas Point Ventures; Jeanne Sullivan, founder of StarVest Partners; and the venture capital firm Bowery Capital.

More information about the Athena Pledge can be found here.

Filed Under: Gender GapWomen's Colleges


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