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learning about career paths from others

Leaders in Higher Education: Three Different Paths to the Same Presidency

Please join us for this very unique, first and only panel presentation by the most recent presidents of Foothill College located in Los Altos Hills, CA (5 miles from Stanford). Foothill’s 5th, 6th, and now 7th presidents will be sharing their personal and professional experiences and how they ended up becoming president of one of the most highly rated community colleges in the country, with a student body larger than Stanford’s. These presidents all are women, from Asian-Pacific Islander ancestry, and from 3rd generation, 1st generation, and recent immigrant backgrounds, respectively.

Backstage Capital founder and managing partner Arlan Hamilton @ ETL

Arlan Hamilton is a remarkable entrepreneur who built a venture capital fund from the ground up, while homeless. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of Backstage Capital, a venture capital firm dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT. Started in 2015, Backstage has now invested nearly $5M into 100 startups led by underestimated founders and has been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, Fortune, Wall Street Journal, CNN Money, Inc., Entrepreneur, and Quartz.

Cowboy Ventures founder and managing partner Aileen Lee @ ETL

In 2013, Aileen Lee coined the term “unicorn” to refer to the growing field of startups with $1 billion valuations. At the time, she was a year into her role as a founder and managing partner of Cowboy Ventures, and her team was preparing a now-influential internal report examining how (and how often) companies with these massive valuations tend to emerge.

Accomable founder and accessibility advocate Srin Madipalli @ ETL

After travelling the world for six months in 2011, Srin Madipalli quit his job as a lawyer and joined the MBA program at the University of Oxford’s Said Business School. A power wheelchair user living with Spinal Muscular Atrophy, Madipalli was particularly attracted to tech and startups, and quickly focused in on the power of technology to transform the lives of people with disabilities. While earning his MBA he taught himself to code, and soon co-founded Accomable, a web app that grew to list accessible accomodations in 60 countries around the world. 

LaunchDarkly CEO and co-founder Edith Harbaugh @ ETL

“I started off in engineering, was frustrated that smart people kept building products no one wanted, so became a product manager to build what people wanted,” says LaunchDarkly CEO and co-founder Edith Harbaugh in an interview published last year on Medium. “I then saw that you could build the right thing, but if no one knew about it, it didn’t exist. So I also got into marketing.”

Computer programming pioneer and MIT Institute Professor Barbara Liskov @ ETL

Barbara Liskov was already breaking new ground in 1968, when she became one of the first American women to earn a doctorate in the emerging discipline of computer science. 

After receiving that PhD at Stanford, she went on to design several influential programming languages, including CLU, an important precursor to Java. More recently, as an Institute Professor at MIT and head of the institute’s Programming Methodology Group, she has undertaken crucial research on distributed systems, information security and complex system failure issues. 

PagerDuty CEO Jennifer Tejada @ ETL

Not long after landing at PagerDuty in 2016, Jennifer Tehada embarked on that harrowing rite of passage for CEOs of fortunate young startups: the pursuit of an IPO. 

The company’s goal was to build and scale a new kind of incident management platform for software developers, one that wouldn’t just monitor technology infrastructure, but also deftly manage real-time alerts and on-call responsibilities, and even proactively recognize and flag emerging opportunities. 

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