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Women in STEM - Leanne Pittsford

Leanne Pittsford is a serial entrepreneur and activist for Queer Women and their allies in technology.

Growing up in a very conservative family in San Diego, California, Leanne did not come out until she was almost ready to graduate college. She attended California Polytechnic State University where she got her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science, and then went on to San Francisco State to get her Masters Degree in Equity and Social Justice in Education.


One of Leanne’s first forays into entrepreneurship was through the founding of an organization called “Start Somewhere.” It was a digital agency that focused on helping nonprofits and social enterprises share their messaging with a larger audience.


In 2012, Leanne went on to found Lesbians Who Tech. What started out as a small coffee gathering for about 30 people has evolved into one of the most prominent tech diversity advocacy groups in the world. Now hosting tens of thousands of members and multiple conferences throughout the year, Lesbians Who Tech has established itself as a major networking group for those who are out in tech and looking for support and their allies. In fact, this week LWT is hosting their 3rd Annual Pride Summit and virtual attendance is free!


In 2015 the San Francisco Business Times named Leanne one of their ‘40 under 40,” and in 2019 she was recognized as one of the most powerful LGBTQ+ people in tech by Business Insider. Most recently, Leanne has founded another startup called “Include” (include.io) which is a job matching board for diverse candidates in tech.


If you’d like to learn even more about Leanne Pittsford, please take a moment to check out her Wikipedia article:



And then watch this talk she gave at one of the LWT conferences a couple of years ago:



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