One quick look around an industry event is all you need to conclude the digital signage industry is like almost all tech-based industries – lopsidedly male in overall headcounts, and particularly at executive levels.
I don’t think the gender seesaw will get balanced in my working lifetime, but it is s l o o o o o w l y changing. You have, for example, the industry’s primary trade show being directed by Andrea Varrone, and several companies, like Wovenmedia, Enplug and ClearLED, being run by women.
Varrone is one of the co-founders of a new organization – Women of Digital Signage – that at least starts as a networking group. The just announced bunch will host an inaugural event during DSE in March.
“Women are making up a growing percentage of the digital signage community,” says Varrone. “I wanted to create a comfortable space for females to celebrate each other, and to encourage other women to join the industry. After speaking with colleagues and friends, we decided now was the time to launch this valuable networking group.”
Varrone and co-founder Megan Dutta, the content director of Systems Contractor News, have an advisory board that includes Brandy Alvarado of rp Visual Solutions, Jennifer Hetzel of Creative Realities, Ann Holland from BrightSign and Gina Spatafore from NEC.
“As in active participant in other female networking groups, I am thrilled to launch this initiative in the digital signage sector,” says Dutta. “This group will create many connections for women and I am particularly excited about the mentoring opportunities this group will generate.”
I would assume this is inspired, at least a bit, by the Women in AV group that has been running in the U.S. for several years, with events that seem to happen around InfoComm.
The Women of Digital Signage Breakfast will be held from 9 – 10 am on March 29 at the LVCC. Registration will be available after Jan 2, 2018 here: http://www.womenofdigitalsignage.org/events.html.
The group is offering free charter membership until April, 15, 2018. Those interested in joining should visit http://www.womenofdigitalsignage.org/membership.html to register.
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for more than 13 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia.